Yup, it’s true, I just don’t sing enough any more. I used to sing all of time. In high school I found choir and musical theater and performance in general. I always felt so alive whenever I was on stage. Just being centered in the vibration of voices, harmonizing to a perfect symphony of sounds sent chills up my spine. It was amazing experience and it felt like home.
When I went to college, it wasn’t that I stopped singing per se, it’s that I lost confidence in my voice. I’ll be honest, it took me two years to find my way back to theater and by the time I was done at school, I had only just started taking voice lessons. A little late to the game I think. Move on to my adult hood where I moved across the country and back again, bad relationships and handful of other early twenty-something dramas and singing (or anything joyful really) took a backseat to everything else going on in my life.
Then I really started to practice yoga, including chanting and singing mantra, which helped me find my voice again. For a very long time I had forgotten that I even had a voice. Well, let’s be honest, part of the problem was that I was in an unhealthy relationship where my partner continually told me that I couldn’t sing, despite what my ears and heart told me. The sad thing was I listened and I allowed my voice to be stifled. But yoga practice helped me to find my voice again, not only in getting up in front of people, but also with singing.
Listen, I’m not saying I’m the next Christina Aguilera or something–that’s a level of talent that I cannot even imagine reaching. However, I can carry a tune, hit on pitch and get swept away by the music and experience. I really love to sing and dance and truly love to express myself with my voice. My heart starts to beam and expand when ever I allow myself to get into a groovy singing session, whether it’s in my car, in the shower, with friends, or at a Kirtan event.
I have been thinking about this post since this weekend, preparing my words as I drove around town singing my heart out and then this Monday I received my weekly newsletter from the Dharma Yoga Center in NYC. Wouldn’t you know, this quote from Sri Dharma Mittra was headlining the whole thing:
“Most adults don’t sing anymore. We have to break that, and start singing the name of the Almighty One, try to cultivate the emotions. We have to elevate our emotions to the maximum, to the limit, and that then turns into spiritual bliss.” ~Dharma Mittra
Perfect timing! It’s true. I really don’t sing enough any more and it’s about time I fix that. Singing is an emotional release as well as uplifting, cathartic experience. I think it’s time I stop letting other people and my self-doubt stand in the way of my self-expression. Sometimes I think that I’d really like to have an album of yoga music one day, not for anything more than just to do it for myself. Who’s to say it won’t happen? Anything is possible really when you use your imagination and follow your heart.