We want to celebrate all the amazing humans and their unique stories that make us this wonderful yoga community. So, we've created the 'Yoga Community Spotlight'. A monthly feature highlighting your fellow students and their journey with yoga, so you can get to know them better.
We're very excited to announce our August Student Spotlight- Cheryl Boehm.
Cheryl's been with us since November of 2019. From the beginning of her journey at HARVEST, Cheryl has shown up on her mat every practice with this gentle soft and courageous energy. It's been a joy to watch her use that energy to grow and thrive as a student.
Learn about Cheryl and her journey with yoga below.
What does HARVEST mean to you?
For me, HARVEST is a new beginning. As a plus-sized woman, I’ve struggled to find somewhere I can work on myself without judgement. A few weeks before my first class at HARVEST, I went to a nearby gym where several young men pointed and laughed at my size, making no effort to hide it. HARVEST is nothing like that. It’s a community where everyone is welcome and individualism is celebrated. There’s no finger-pointing. No judgement. Just endless optimism and encouragement.
How did you start your yoga journey?
I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disorder in my mid-twenties. I was taking nine prescription medications to manage it. I knew it wasn’t sustainable, so I started exploring alternatives, including yoga. I slowly weaned off the prescriptions and haven’t taken one regularly for years.
What does yoga mean to you?
One of my favorite movies growing up was The Goonies. There’s a pivotal scene where the main character Mikey says, “Down here it's our time. It's our time down here.” That scene goes through my head every time I step on my mat. Yoga is “my time.” It’s my time to set aside worries, fears, stressors, chores, to-do lists … It’s my time to focus on my physical and spiritual self.
How do you fit yoga into your everyday life?
My favorite way to practice yoga is a HARVEST class. But if it doesn’t work with my schedule, I try to sneak yoga in where I can. Sometimes it’s a simple tree pose while I brush my teeth. Or four figure in bed before I go to sleep at night.
What advice would you share yogis just starting out?
With yoga—just like every other part of life—it’s so easy to compare yourself to others. Look how strong she is. Look at her balance. Look how great her butt looks in those yoga pants. Lol. Don’t compare yourself to others. Yoga is a journey that’s uniquely your own. Be patient with yourself, listen to your body and go at your own pace.
If you were a yoga pose, which one would you be?
Tree pose. A strong foundation with limbs going every which way but always reaching toward the sky.
What’s one interesting fact you want to share with our community?
Yoga is about connection. Connecting with yourself, the community, our universe … And I believe it’s important to embrace that mindset on and off the mat. To give back, I foster rescued mama cats and their newborn kittens until they’re old enough to be adopted out to their forever homes. Believe it or not, it’s not all fun and games. Fostering kitties has its own unique challenges. But in the end, it’s super rewarding and brings me joy to care for mamas and their kittens.