If laughter is the best medicine, then goat yoga can cure all of the world’s ailments. I’m not lying when I tell you that goat yoga may be my favourite challenge to date and we just finished having a food fight that had taken the pole position. Goat yoga is not for the squeamish or the true yogis, but it is for the playful at heart.
Ozzy was my goat friend. He started our friendship with pee on my mat forcing me to flip sides. Ozzy then took over the other end of the mat for his nap, and finally took stature on my back for a pose of his own. He was everything I need in a goat and everything I need in a friend.
Friends should pee on your mat occasionally. If they always think you are perfect, they are lying. They are not perfect either. On a girls weekend, I was sharing a bed with Liz and must have been farting up a storm in my sleep because it actually woke me up. You know how you don’t notice the smell of someplace if you have been in that air for a while? This was not like that. The atmosphere was rancid, and I found my friend on the couch instead of at my side when I finally woke up to pee. I tried to go back to bed, but even I couldn’t stand my smell. I joined Lizzy on the couch, and she has never forgotten when it comes time to choosing bed mates on our weekends that I can’t have onions and still be fun to sleep with. She doesn’t let anyone else forget either as she pisses on my mat to remind me to change something.
Friends should make you flip your mat too. A group of us were on a ski day, and I was nervous because I had previously had a ski accident and now I thought the hill was out to get me. When I fumbled off the lift, I blamed my friend Deb for getting in my way. It was not her fault. I knew that, but it took Deb’s look in my eye and stern, “I didn’t do anything wrong,” for me to admit fault and flip my story back to me being a nervous moron on skis. Deb forgave me, I think, long before I forgave myself for that misstep.
Friends also take over your mat when you need them too. When I was in bed with pneumonia, and later with depression, my friends would bring over meals, pick up kids, or snuggle on the couch with me (not so much when I was contagious). Even when their physical presence wasn’t taking space on my mat, their spirits were with me in phone calls, emails, texts, and silly GIFs they thought would make me smile. I knew they were there if I needed them and they were a short reach away to give me the calm I needed.
Great friends also take stature on your back on occasion. My friends are always doing human pyramids for our group shots. I’m always the bottom because I am far from the smallest in the group. So my friends, literally, take pose on my back. They also do it figuratively. They have my back. I know that if I need them, they will be there. They had held me when I’ve cried and celebrated with me when the circumstances called for it. They are the family I chose.
I am fortunate that all my friends are like Ozzy the goat. They keep me grounded, breathing, laughing, challenging myself, and they have my back.
My Turning 50 Like a Boss Pro Tip: Choose your friends like you would choose a goat.
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