About one year ago I was entering into the summer of my dreams. I was registered to play in two hockey leagues, a soccer league and a basketball league. With some very light dry land training, I was sort of ready. My first event in this amazing summer was basketball. I found a league with a great group of guys and was ready for action. To prepare, I did my usual shoot around for a warm-up and waited for the whistle to start the game. About 30 mins into the game, I was running down the court and felt a sledge hammer hit my leg. At that exact moment, I also heard what sounded like a champagne bottle exploding. After about 10 seconds of trying to figure out what happened, I realize I had a complete rupture of my Achilles tendon. I considered this to be the worst new guy performance of all time.
So there I am at the hospital, wondering about surgery, recovery time, money lost, what my summer would look like, my leg strength and what I am going to do about work (I have an amazing job teaching Phys. Ed). Not once did I think that this moment would change my life, make me better, stronger and more physically fit.
One of my friends came to stay with me and my wife. He had some time off and wanted to come down to help. He lived with us for a month driving me to physiotherapy, to the gym and keeping my spirits high. When I got the soft cast removed, my wife had just joined Power Yoga Canada. She went to a class and came back radiating, excited and joyful. She kept telling me, “You should come. You should come! Everyone there is so amazing…”.
Always wanting a new experience, I decided to give it a try. And this is where my transformation occurred, from the worst day of my life to one of the best decisions I have made.
I went in to yoga wanting to rehabilitate my leg, but what I did not expect was a rehabilitation of mind, body and soul. I have now been practicing for 6 months, once or twice a week. I have made a full recovery and am having more success at hockey than ever before (I don’t think basketball is in my near future). But more importantly is the gratitude I owe everyone at Power Yoga. It is so rare to be surrounded by so many wonderful and inspirational, instructors and people practicing. The energy is so contagious. With the full support from everyone, we have taken a leap of faith and are now going to Kenya to build a school through the Africa Yoga Project.
One year ago it was all about my summer, and what was taken from me; remember, the worst day of my life. Today thanks to Power Yoga it is now the best time of my life. I am truly living. I have not left for Africa yet and still need to raise a lot of money, but I am already excited about how we can help by building the school and help the next group going. My wife and I are fundraising for AYP, meeting amazing people who are so helpful and loving the challenge. This experience so far has taught me several lessons. One is that there are amazing people in this world. The other, is that changing the world is a next to an impossible task. But if you change your own world, then the world around you changes.
– Jonathan Gardner
Block Party: July 8 from 1-5pm
AYP Website: www.africayogaproject.org
Jessica and Jonathan’s Fundraising Page: https://www.z2systems.com/np/clients/ayoga/campaign.jsp?campaign=135