Yoga for Families of Addiction Gala sold out last night! It is our first fundraiser. Selling out was a feat I am told is not easy.
We sold out in exactly four weeks.
We sold out because people believe in this mission. They know that addiction can affect so many in their world and the people around them. They want to begin to do whatever it takes in order to help themselves and their loved ones heal. They want to see the world of recovery grow and the wings of love begin to surround those that so desperately need it in times of crisis. Deep down, they know that this organization is at the very beginning of a huge breakthrough for addiction and those who love addicts.
But let’s take a moment to step back and see how we got here.
This photo was taken almost 2 years to the date.
When you love an addict, your world is often full of many promises that never actually came to fruition.
Everything in our world was falling apart, I was promised that for our fifth anniversary we would go on a tropical vacation. Continual promises kept coming even though we had just moved into our new home and it likely wasn’t financially responsible. Being naive, codependent and very much in love with my ex-husband, I believed that we were going on a vacation.
A few weeks before we were supposed to go, when I began to ask him about the trip, he told me that I was being selfish and it was my fault that I had gotten my own hopes up. It was our fifth wedding anniversary and we had been so through much. All I wanted was a moment to go away and celebrate. I didn’t care if we went to New Hampshire or New York City or to Jamaica as he had originally promised. All I wanted was a night or two with the person that I loved; fully present.
We settled on going into Manhattan for a night and seeing a Broadway show. This photo was taken moments before we had another big blowout. I had given money to someone in Central Park that was clearly a con. Instead of stopping me or helping me with my innocence in that moment, he berated me as we walked through the park and told me that I wasn’t smart enough to make any educated decisions. At the time, he was in withdrawal as he had promised (and stuck to) not having a drink the evening before.
I saw this mural in the park and knew that I just needed to take this photo. I took it as a promise and a reminder to myself that there is so much love and peace and joy in the world.
I promised myself that if he could pull it together for just a few more nights, if he could continue to prove to me that he could stay sober, then I could stay for one more night.
I left two days after our anniversary.
In the two years since then; I have learned the ins and outs the court system, raised my son as my own, and continued to build up Barefoot Yoga Shala, and created Yoga for Families of Addiction. (YFFA)
The moment I left I went into survival mode. I packed three bags and shoved as much of my possessions as I could into my dads storage unit. I moved in with my parents and began to create a plan. God laughs at plans, but at least I had a semblance of moving forward.
I was safe.
Fast forward to March. My girlfriend Leisl had gifted me a trip to Kripalu where I met Satya of Satya Jewelry. In her class on mediation, mantra and malas, I channeled the entire program for YFFA. I mapped out the teacher training and classes on a small green notebook in the silent room as I gazed out into the Berkshires. I cried as I could feel with every fiber of my being that this dream would come true.
Fast forward to June. I gave my first speech at Ayurveda Wellness Inc. My (now) board member Kim knew I had a message and she wanted to be the first to let me share. While I was telling my story, I realized we didn’t have our classes up online.
Fast forward to June. We hosted our first YFFA class at Barefoot.
Fast forward to October. I held my first teacher training and have since graduated eight teachers, with another training this coming November.
Exactly a year later. Lululemon gifted us the Here to Be grant.
In the last two months we have worked tirelessly to create our first fundraiser. Our board and I decided we needed a Gala. First to raise money. Second to PARTY!
In the yoga community, we literally live in black stretchy pants. That’s our job. We can easily run errands and live our life in yoga pants. It’s easy to forget to dress up and people are often shocked when I show up in jeans.
The idea for the Gala was born. A place where yogis can play and bring their spouses and partners and friends. A place where non-yogis can dance and support a mission they truly believe in. A place where we could include the entire community.
Tickets went on sale September 10th and we sold out October 12th!
Joyful. Grateful. Humbled. Honored. Shaking. Heart bursting. Eyes teary. On my knees praying my favorite prayer : THANK YOU!
For the first time in my life I feel speechless.
Thank you all so much for everything you’ve shared in the past two years. Thank you for coming to the event, for donating and for sharing our announcements.
I cannot find words for the gratitude I need to express, but I am bowing my head today. Thank you.
Namaste, xx – Jenny
P.s. Do YOU want to be involved in the event?? Or help our small organization grow?? You can donate to our 501(c)3 here!