As I write this I am fast approaching the final week of this 10-week programme, and I cannot believe how the time has flown and how much has been packed in!
So much, that I am reading back through my journal and marvelling at how far the course has brought me, from cynicism and resignation, to feeling that it is all (life, I mean) an awfully big adventure.
I attended my iEvolve in September 2014, and it was very clear to me that, in spite of the fact that I didn’t really have the money to pay for it, and hardly any work (I am an actor!) it was a no-brainer; I was going to do the next Foundation Course.
Within a week or two of signing up, I had a temp job that took care of the immediate financial situation, and a couple of clashing dates gracefully resolved themselves. I was ready for my first Foundation Course weekend, or was I?
No, not really. Like one of the delicious meals we learned to cook with Françoise Auvray, that first weekend was a perfect combination of sweet and soothing bodywork, crunchy cookery and some pungent dialoguing! Throughout the weekend I felt elated, incredibly relaxed, I cried because I used the wrong frying pan in cooking class and burnt the turnips, and laughed until my sides hurt at the wonderfully generous sharing from my fellow Foundationeers.
And that pretty much set the tone of all the other weekends and the weekly evening sessions. The Foundation Course is elegantly constructed to fully ground into everyday life the opening in possibility that is created during iEvolve.
The course presents ways of really taking care of ourselves, and over the 10 weeks I learned how to listen; how to stop relentlessly doing and to listen to what my body really requires.
I thought I had a good understanding of the exercise my body needed. I would mechanically push myself through daily exercise routines and beat myself up if I missed a day. I was frequently quite achey, and worried constantly that if I missed exercising I would put on loads of weight. Throughout The Foundation Course I have learned to relax and be much less aggressive in my choice of exercise, but also much more inventive, and I can honestly say I am feeling better than I have in a long time. And I have lost weight! Without trying.
All due in part too, to the new cookery skills and ingredients that I have introduced to my everyday routines. As a long term vegetarian, I was quite smug about my eating habits, but have come out of the course with a wealth of new recipes and ways of cooking that really support my well being. I was very surprised, though, at the emotional baggage I have around food and nourishing myself; Christmas dinner was quite eventful!
But I haven’t even got to the best bit yet. Throughout all of this process you get to have a coach who you phone once every week and talk to, and who will stop at nothing to support your transformation! I mean nothing!
I want very much to emphasise how much difference this programme has made to my life. Also it has been tough and sometimes upsetting, as I saw things about myself I really wish I hadn’t. Sometimes I have wanted to run screaming in the opposite direction, but there is always someone in the group who will just say or do something very simple and reassuring, or who will share in dialoguing their own upset. Sheila Parmer said right at the beginning of the programme that we would all fall in love with each other and we have, and then out, then in, then …..
So now I am hanging onto my sling-backs in preparation for the final week, and I can feel the momentum gathering; wonder where I’ll land?
Oh yes, stop press… I just found out I’m due a tax return that is the exact amount of The Foundation Course.