This past weekend as I was filing away a few books (Nick is notorious for loaning his male friends a good read or two), I came across the Richard Hittleman’s Yoga: 28 Day Exercise Plan. Completely old-school style, copyright 1969, hippie in leotard and tights kind of a guide. It’s fabulous. But what I found inside felt even more vintage. Hidden in between the pages was a postcard mailed from my Uncle Will-Bill in Ely to his sister and nieces in the “cities” in July 1998.
Hi, ya’ all. An after thought on the yoga book – 1) Read + follow all the instructions everyday. 2) Set aside a 1/2 hours to do each day’s program. 3) Don’t push yourself to extreme positions, let your body find the point where it’s comfortable. 4) Go slowly through each posture. 5) Be patient with yourself. Love – W
An instant smile appeared on my face, and flashbacks of my Uncle demonstrating his yoga moves on the sunny porch of his log cabin filled my head. He was persistent with the idea we all needed to integrate yoga as a daily practice. At the time, there was no need for yoga in our lives (pre Blooma for my sister, I simply ran and rarely stretched, and mom’s more of lifetime speed walker). Not only did Uncle Will-Bill hand over his yoga “bible” he’d been carrying around since practicing in the Moab Desert in the 60’s, but he followed up with a handwritten card, so we would remember his recommendation, his poses. I hear of few people these days who take the time to advise or reach out to a friend on a meaningful topic through a handwritten note.
15 years has passed and my Uncle is not stretching as much as he used to. I wonder, if I mailed him back the book and included the postcard (although it might need to be a photocopy because the original is a keeper!), would he start the practice up again? Looking at his own writing, it might hit a chord. He might even strike a pose or two.