Robyn Cohen, the Sports, Fitness & Wellness Director at the JCC is rock solid, and a rock star. She was the ultimate in mindfulness Sunday, setting up the tables and making sure everything looked beautiful. She is magnificent at guiding me to manage my expectations and have patience as the Center builds slowly into a sustainable and healing resource for the community.

The three instructors that had the opportunity to teach demos were terrific. Amanda Rignalda, teaching The Mindful Spirit of Dogs was unique and wonderful. All the humans and their dogs loved her mini class, and based on the happy faces of dogs and their human companions, I know her program will be a hit!

Barbara Metz, teaching Qigong, was fabulous at teaching a few techniques and explaining the ancient healing art of Qigong, which she has been teaching for over 25 years. Twenty minutes of her guidance was enough for me to know that her hour-long class is important for me. I’m setting the intention to wake up and learn from her from 7-8 am on Tuesday mornings!

Jennifer Opaka, creator of the Opaka method of roll and release moving meditation had one of her capable teachers represent her Sunday. The class was completely engaged lying on mats with balls placed in various positions under their bodies in order to release pain and stress. There were also people sitting in chairs using smaller balls under their feet, releasing fascia to ease pain and discomfort in their bodies. Jennifer already has a devoted following so I know her classes will be well attended. I’m going to try to make the Thursday 10:45 a.m. class a part of my weekly routine!

Our three teachers trained at the UCSD Center for Mindfulness were generous with their time Sunday. Lorraine Hobbs, Merry Woodruff, and Jacquelyn Schwartz willingly donned the Balanced Mind Meditation T-shirt so we could look like the cohesive team that we are building. They answered questions and were stellar ambassadors for the BMMC. Each one of them has so much to offer and I wish I could have highlighted a fraction of what they do for their clients and the world. I’m happy that we will have a space in the BMMC for their literature and offerings. We will also be scheduling free intro sessions to their evidence based courses so that the community can learn what each course is about and how they can benefit themselves by learning these practices.

Two of our work out trainers who are also substitute teachers for the drop in classes at the BMMC, Rebecca Tenant and Susan Sange, looked awesome in their BMMC t-shirts as they toured guests from the outside event space in to see the studio.

It is amazing to me that we pulled this off. When I think back to how it started, and how we rolled with it, I can’t believe it. Seeing my Dad and my sister Jody sitting in the BMMC Sunday for the dedication of the room in memory of my mom was heart swelling and heart hurting. My sister Jan was on a plane but I felt her with us, and I felt my mom’s spirit and her absence.

Balanced Mind Meditation Center Grand Opening
I had already done the dedication outside because I thought there were too many people to say words in the room, not knowing that there was family and close friends waiting in the room for the dedication! (That’s the difficulty of having the event in two locations; outside on the field under tents and inside in the meditation studio!) When I got to the room and saw my Dad, sister, husband, twin daughters and really super close old friends, I plopped down and did another dedication. I should have had someone check the room while I was leading meditation out on the field! Oy, I did not do that as well as I would have liked! People from the field that enjoyed my meditation and dedication came to the room but someone had closed the door to block the noise and it inadvertently locked so they couldn’t get in! The president of the board and the Executive Director of the JCC and his wife, people whom I love, were locked out of the room!

All in all, the day was a success, and I feel filled with gratitude for everyone involved. And filled with gratitude for everyone that gave up an afternoon to show up. Now that we built it, hopefully they will come!

Please share your thoughts. . .