Special Yoga For Special Children In Peru

Landing In Lima.

I arrived sunday night to teach Special Yoga For Special Children, after a looooonnng flight,  something like 13/14 hours.  I was picked up at the airport by a sweet young guy in his creaky jeep with an smile, an envelope with some local currency and a bag of fruit!  Felt good though to be back on the road again after so long, well a few months, but quite long for my wayward free spirit!

As we drive down the coastal road away from the airport there is a big cross lighting up the ocean and I feel like I am being blessed for this journey. I am held – no doubt about that and i feel deep gratitude.  Arriving at the small apartment i am staying in is a statue of Maria. Again with deep gratitude i am reminded that i am safe and taken care of.

Special Yoga For Special Children

Day One.

The first morning i decide to navigate my way to the studio. I’m really yearning for a coffee and it’s only 8:30; nowhere that serves coffee seems to be open until i get to the roundabout next to the studio where theres Nescafe on offer in the shopping mall.  I like really strong coffee and clock to myself, “We have to do something about this tomorrow!”

The group are lovely and the course starts well. Having a translator proves some interesting new experiences; I am having to remember to slow down and remember what I last said, while she translates,  this is not so easy with jetlag, lol. The translator, who took the training with me last time I was here is deeply passionate about the work, however it does mean she’s so wanting to be part of the course that she sometimes forgets to translate. Her English is also slightly lacking, but with the goodwill of some of the students who speak english we navigate our way through the day. 

I ask to see the schedule of children coming and there are literally 20+ kids due to arrive this week, with no timings or schedules around this,  and we are doing a trip to an orphanage as well! Lets see how it works, it’s quite possibly too many children but I’m trusting the Divine flow.

The team at Lima Yoga have arranged a massage for me for my first evening, always a great way to shift jet lag. The woman who is treating me has the most beautiful energy and I surrender into her hands.  I found a cab to take me to close to where I am staying. I try and find somewhere to eat or buy food, not so easy. What I do find on my way home is a Starbucks around the corner from where I’m staying, so now I know where my morning coffee is going to come from; definitely better than Nescafe until I find a peruvian solution!

Day Two.

The second day of training starts with a very early wake up, so lots of time for my practice.  The day unravels beautifully, we have a new translator whose english is perfect and two gorgeous children come in the afternoon – one four year old who has just been diagnosed with autism – not sure about that – she makes eye contact with me, curls into my body, and starts singing ‘Hari Om’ with me. She keeps bringing my hand back to her feet to keep guiding her body. Her mum had given up on her, so this was fantastic for her to see what could be possible for her. The second child is a gorgeous three year old with downs syndrome who smiled the most happy and joyful smile and followed me through the practise – happy mum – happy child- happy students – and happy me!

Getting back to my apartment and am literally asleep by 8.30 (very unusual for an ex-insomniac!)

Day Three.

Focus today on Cerebral Palsy.  We have three children – first is a 14 year old boy who is both blind and with CP. He is such a beautiful and happy young man and he responded really well. Raised by grandma (mum left 4four years ago never to be seen again) and she now has more tools to work with him to help him. 

The second child is four years old and has ataxic CP – anxious but sooooo beautiful and he did really well with the practise.  Mum left knowing that she needs to learn to breath both for herself and her gorgeous son.  The last child arrives asleep and eventually is able to wake briefly.  He is so uncomfortable in his body that he screams a lot.  Mum shares with me how much patience is needed to manage his constant crying, he’s clearly in pain.  For a few moments he stops and I am able to work with him and he smiles.  He is supported to eliminate some of the trapped wind and that really helps briefly. Eventually after lots of crying he falls asleep; mum is desperate and I offer to see her again later in the week.

No jet lag tonight so decide that i have to find some ‘life’ (where i am staying there are virtually no shops, no cafes no bars – dead part of town despite the sweet apartment.) So i head out.  I realise today that i have a strong soul call to be here.  While chatting to my translator she affirmed to desperate need for this work in the indigenous communities, where they have no money, no resources medically and these special children are simply discarded.  The few doctors have no idea what to do with them.

Day Four.

I’m woken up feeling even more committed to supporting the special children in this sacred land, my soul feels pulled here.  I wonder how and if the universe will open this up. The NGO connection has not opened its doors yet.

Lets see how today goes, I trust that all will be revealed in its right time.  There is much to do here and it will require me to spend longer periods so the timing may not be right just yet.  Another reminder to let go – let God and trust.

Today we had a group of children with autism from a local school. A very well-heeled and beautiful hearted woman came with them who told me that she volunteers at the school and that her husband and her fund it, and that she has to give back to feed her soul. I was so touched by her and by the group of kids and I managed to teach a group with no language!  I definitely have to learn spanish!  The lovely students that are training have now taken on the idea of yoga as seva (service) and are planning to go into the school and serve there.

Day Five.

Another beautiful day with this amazing group, and lovely vegan dinner with a new friend in town.

Posted by Jyoti Jo Manuel on Saturday, September 22, 2018

Day Six.

A trip to the orphanage for children with special needs.  I was there two years ago and was amazed at how many more facilities are there, wheel chairs, a medical unit, volunteers etc. I got the group working directly with the children. I think we must have had around ten kids in the space at one point today, some blind, some severely disabled, some with Downs, trauma, autism, the whole spectrum. My heart was really blown open today. This group are amazing, the love and commitment and passion to serve these children is extraordinary.

When i leave tomorrow i feel my job for this trip has really been done. Grateful beyond belief. Lets see where this journey in South America takes me, i have absolutely no doubt that i have a deep mission here and that i will be back.

If you’d like to join the growing Special Yoga team, you can view our trainings here.
Special Yoga & Mindfulness For Autism & ADHD

Special Yoga For Cerebral Palsy & PMLD

Special Yoga For Children & Young Adults With Hearing And/Or Visual Imparment

Posted in ADHD, Autism, CP/PMLD, Special Yoga, Uncategorized

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