Lindsey, Wichita, Kansas:

I’m a 30 something lesbian currently residing in Wichita, Kansa. Contrary to popular belief, Wichita is a city full of ethnicity and an ever growing population of LGBTQ. Of course there are still those that choose to reside in a place of fear and spew hate, but I have encountered this much less than people might think. As a lesbian I feel safe and accepted.

However, there is a different kind of judgement and discomfort that I feel here. The discomfort of being a muscular, ripped, fit woman…which in the middle of Kansas is much more obscure. People gawk, try to touch me without permission, assume I’m on steroids, and ask me things like how much I can curl, or how often I lift weights. I have found that most people don’t want to engage with me on any level because of their own insecurities. As a result, I spend most of my time alone and covered up when I’m out just to avoid awkward interactions, rejection and judgement.

Yoga for me is a community of acceptance and love. I found a place where I can take off my shirt, breathe and feel completely comfortable in my own skin. My muscles don’t matter and neither does what anyone else is thinking. Yoga has taught me how to see my mind, body and breath as a whole, and to be damn proud of it. It is my refuge, and in my own silly fantasy, where this Clark Kent, becomes Superman. And, just in case you are wondering, Yoga has played a huge part in sculpting this physique. It is a daily part of my regimen that has given me not only physical strength, but the mental and emotional strength to attain my personal goals and love every bit of myself.

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