The Barn Doesn’t Care

I came across this poem and instantly fell in love. “Yoga doesn’t care,” is my mantra when a guilty feeling starts to crawl its way to the surface.

Yoga Doesn’t Care: A Disclaimer that Should be Posted in Every Studio. 

By Janne Robinson

(Abbreviated version)

Yoga doesn’t care what your hair looks like.

Yoga doesn’t care if you are vegetarian, if you eat meat or know what Kombucha is.

Yoga doesn’t care when the last time you practiced was—yesterday, six months ago, never.

Yoga doesn’t care what kind of mat you have, brand new or eating away at itself.

Yoga doesn’t care if you show up cranky or exhausted.

Yoga doesn’t care if you wear mala beads.

Yoga doesn’t care what the tag on the back of your pants says.

Yoga doesn’t care if you don’t know what yoga means.

Yoga doesn’t care how much money you have, what house you live in, what car you drive.

Yoga doesn’t care if you are flexible.

Yoga doesn’t care if you fall over in Trikonasana.

Yoga doesn’t care if you fart during practice.

Yoga doesn’t care if you ever make it into head stand.

Yoga doesn’t care if you feel uncomfortable saying Namaste and Om.

Yoga doesn’t care if you drink super food smoothies or drink coconut water.

Yoga doesn’t care if choose the back corner or the front row of the room to practice.

Yoga doesn’t care if you stay to meditate.

Yoga doesn’t care if you can put your leg behind your head, or lick your own ass.

Yoga doesn’t care if you know what Ujjayi breath is.

Yoga doesn’t care if you have a man bun.

Yoga doesn’t care if your monkey mind takes over.

Yoga doesn’t care how old you are, the color of your hair doesn’t affect your practice.

Yoga doesn’t care if you juice or cleanse.

Yoga doesn’t care if you shake the entire 60 minutes.

Yoga doesn’t care if you complete a 30 day challenge.

Yoga doesn’t care if you shop at whole foods.

Yoga doesn’t care if you remember to shave your armpits.

Yoga is just happy you show up.

Too often I mentally kick my self for not stepping onto my mat for days. I know that a simple fifteen minute session would make all the difference in my day. Instead, I’ll throw out some excuse about time and rush about creating more tension. When I finally find my self back in Tadanasna, if only for a few minutes, I remember “yoga doesn’t care.” It also couldn’t give two pennies about when I show up, how I look, what mood I’m in, what I ate the night before. It’s just happy that I showed up.

I believe “yoga” can be replaced by many words. Running, biking, blogging…. the list could run on. The “word” is what makes you happy when you show up, in what ever state. At first I wanted to replace yoga with my horse, but that didn’t seem to encompass the whole feeling. It’s more than just one horse, it’s the barn full of horses. It’s getting up early to the barn to watch the sunrise. It’s sipping a cider at the barn after afternoon chores. It’s sneaking to the barn late at night just to check in on sleepy ponies. The barn is my happy place.

The Barn doesn’t care.

The barn doesn’t care if your hair is in a ball cap.

The barn doesn’t care if you wear Tuff jeans or Kerrit breaches.

The barn doesn’t care if your horse is purebred or backyard-yard bred.

The barn doesn’t care if you’re eight or eighty.

The barn doesn’t care if you’re finishing a lesson, going on a trail ride, or prepping for a show.

The barn doesn’t care if there is an eight horse slant with living quarters or a two-horse stock parked in the back.

The barn doesn’t care if you’re Parelli, Classical, Cowboy, Ray Hunt, Julie Goodnight, or Self trained.

The barn doesn’t care if you can spend all day or just enough to finish chores.

The barn doesn’t care what car you pulled up in.

The barn doesn’t care how many saddles you have in the tack room.

The barn doesn’t care if your best friend has two legs or four.

The barn is just happy you showed up.

I’ve never regretted the time spent at the barn or on my mat. I have to remind myself that it’s ok to spend 10 minutes in Sun Salutations if I don’t have an hour for a class. It is ok to groom a horse for ten minutes if I don’t have an hour to saddle up. The moments that make us happy are always there waiting for us. Essentially it isn’t yoga or the barn that’s just happy that I showed up, it’s me.

I am just happy that I showed up.