LAUREN RISING
            I joined Jessica Depew's Master's Path when I decided I wanted to grow as a  yogi. I knew that I wanted to share, but felt even more so that I needed to share the gift of yoga. I knew learning to teach was the next step. The name Master's Path could not be more appropriate. With struggles, challenges, trials, and sweat comes "aha" moments, little victories, and new perception. This path is not easy and the road seems long, but isn't that the point? After all, I came here to seek growth, wisdom, and a specific skill set. I know I am on the right path because the world around me is changing as I change. I am still just an acorn, grateful to be in the guiding knowledge of my teacher. Thank you, Jyoti, for teaching me how to breathe in the light!

 
KAILEE VIATOR
            My name is Kailee Viator, I am a SETX native, and have been practicing yoga at GTY for almost two years. I have established myself as a mixed media visual artist in the area. My career as an artist has been exponentially strengthened by my yoga practice. “They” say that an artist must be swallowed up by grief, only coming out of their brood to apply paint to a surface and then hang it on a wall. I have believed this for the majority of my young adult life, however, through yoga and my wonderful teacher I have been taught that it simply isn’t so.
            Reality check: we all, each and every one of us, create our own suffering. Whatever experiences life presents us with, it is up to us alone to determine our reaction. We can wallow, and wallow, and wallow. Or, we can rise up like the phoenix and turn it into something positive. I like to think that my work reflects this; spiritual imagery and religious icons in my work help to portray a sense of peace. Peace is something I think everyone wants, yet appears to be so unattainable, an abstract concept never to be known by humans. This is a fallacy.
            In the last year or so at Golden Triangle Yoga, I have faced this challenge time and time again. I will continue to face it. The key is to lean into that resistance. When you don’t want to go to yoga, when you don’t want to get out of bed.. when you didn’t even wash off your make-up the night before. When the sadness wanders in to find its old cozy spot in your mind, that is when you go to yoga. That is when you get up and go to work. My paintings, ceramic sculptures, and wax assemblages of the last two years would not have seen the light of day if not for my practice at GTY. Through asana, breath control, and meditation I have not only found the inspiration necessary in cultivating my soul’s calling, but I have learned tools in how to quiet the beast they call depression. It really works. Almost like magic.


 
MELISSA WATKINS
            My name is Melissa Watkins and I’m the studio manager for Golden Triangle Yoga. I also teach some of the group classes during the week. My journey, however, did not start out that way. I started my training as a student of the Master’s Path Teacher Training at Golden Triangle Yoga in 2013. At the time I was working as a retail manager, chronically stressed and having panic attacks pretty regularly. My first intentions were just to become a teacher because I loved doing yoga and wanted to help heal others. I had always loved the physical aspect of yoga, and knew there was more to the practice but had
no idea how healing it can really be. That was just the tip of the iceberg.
            The modern world is almost designed to constantly pull us away from our own happiness. Billboards, Facebook, commercials, everything is making you think, “Oh... When I have this… or when I look like this… then I will be happy, then I will be good enough.” A true practice of yoga and meditation teaches us that we are already enough. Happiness is not a checklist; it already is there if you are willing to see it.
            Jessica Depew’s Master’s Path Program did way more than teach me how to teach yoga; it helped me discover more of myself. It healed wounds I had shoved way deep inside of myself. It gave me the confidence and courage to follow my dreams to become a yoga teacher (and studio manager!), and live
my life the way that I want to. Happily. Her teachings are so in depth, interactive, and engaging. Her dedication to learning continuously and sharing with her students is apparent and admirable. I was amazed to find a teacher of this quality in SETX.
            This journey has not been easy. There have been many obstacles I have had to overcome. I can say it has been 100% worth it and will continue to be. I am a huge believer in the programs at GTY, which is why I still attend workshops and students see me often. The benefits of my practice have rippled through not only my own personal life, but through my relationships with my family and friends. It is truly amazing. This is my lifestyle now. I choose happiness, do you? It’s time to clear away the cobwebs and let your light shine!


 
DARCY HENRY
            I cannot say enough good things about the training I have received Golden Triangle Yoga. It was so much more than what I could have expected. We are so fortunate to have this level of yoga education in our area. I did a lot of research before I enrolled in the program and this was by far more comprehensive than any other programs I evaluated. Now, I can pass on this excellent body of knowledge to my own students. This training has forever changed my life.

 
MICHELLE WEBB
         Ever since I was a child, I’ve dealt with anxiety and depression. I can still remember intense, specific fears on which my mind ruminated relentlessly. Without tools to process these emotions, I usually became inconsolable, filled with anger and hopelessness. Every minor struggle I encountered became a disaster, sending me careening into self-created chaos. Eventually, I was diagnosed with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, which only got worse as I got older.
        I began my yoga journey when I was 17 and severely depressed. I was living in Louisiana at the time, and found a restorative yoga class through a friend. After my first class, I knew I had stumbled upon something life-altering. I felt a peace that I hadn’t felt before; like I had been thirsting my whole life and finally found a sweet sip of cool water.  After I moved to Beaumont, I searched entire area for a yoga class that had the same nurturing quality as the one in my hometown.
          In the doors of Golden Triangle Yoga, I found everything I was looking for and infinitely more. The classes provided the priceless opportunity to silence the mind, to connect with oneself, and connect with something greater. Jessica Depew embodies the true spirit of yoga and passes on her wisdom eloquently. I had finally unearthed a safe space where I could learn to dwell within myself.
          I began the Master’s Path Training to become a Registered Yoga Teacher in 2013. I hoped that one day I would be able to pass on the gift that Jessica had given to me. I learned more than I could’ve ever imagined from Jessica, gained precious friendships, and delved even deeper into my self-discovery.
I can say, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Golden Triangle Yoga has beautifully changed my life.