OK, it's taken me a while to write this because I haven't fully reconciled it yet.
So. You're leaving. Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!!!!
(For all of you just tuning in, Dolly is my favorite, and currently, my only yoga teacher. She is the teacher who I did my yoga teacher training with. She is the one who helped me realize what yoga is, what it means, that you can practice it and still be yourself, that you don't have to practice anyone's yoga but your own.)
Again, you're leaving. I'm genuinely happy for the promise your future holds, and I want all the citizens of Oregon to know how damn lucky they will be to have you in their midst. I know I will not be alone in feeling the gaping hole your absence will leave here. There will never be another Dolly, and though I am deeply grateful to have had the opportunity to practice with you these last couple years, I am distraught about you leaving.
I know what you'd say...there are great teachers here! You'll find another! Perhaps. But none like you. You have the unique ability to blend just the right amount of traditional yoga with a more modern, challenging, and creative practice. You have this way of making Om accessible for even the tough guys in the back row. You make the newbie feel as comfortable as the long-time practitioner. Week after week you switch it up, challenge us, console us, inspire us, encourage us, keep us guessing, keep us laughing—and no matter what state we were in at the beginning, 90 minutes later we're all nicer, kinder, sweeter, happier, gentler, and calmer. Because that is your magic. That is your calling. That, my dearest Dolly, is your undeniable gift.
I just want you to know what an impact you've had on my life in particular, how appreciative I continue to be for your guidance, knowledge, example, and friendship. I broke through a lot of personal barriers because of you...all because one day I had this insane idea to get up at 4:30am so I could go practice yoga. Good thing I'm a morning person, right? As they say, the early bird gets the worm. I got a hell of a lot more than that. I learned to face my fears, to get outside of my comfort zone, to play my edges, and it's all because you gave me a place where I felt safe enough to do it. Thank you so very much, Dolly. I am practically a new woman today because of what I learned from you.
I could go on and on about what you mean to me, how much you will be missed, what a fantastic teacher you are, how cool you are, and all that. Easily. For reams and reams. But in closing, I will simply say Dolly, I love you, love the spirit you are, I thank you, and I wish you nothing but all the very best. You are a gem of a being, a one-and-only, the brightest star I have ever encountered.
And to the rest of you who are reading, if you will please, in your way, send love and good wishes out into the universe for Dolly, I would also be most appreciative.