At 34.5 weeks I think it is time for me to abandon my “regular” yoga classes, and I figured this very dramatic song was a fitting sendoff. Or maybe this one?

This is a very sad day for me.

But I think it’s the right decision — I’ve become a lot more uncomfortable this week and between the contractions, the baby’s position (very low but not dropped), the simultaneous sensation that my stomach is being jammed into my lungs, and my overall awkwardness, it’s probably better for my body if I stick to my prenatal and home practice.

The nice thing about yoga in general is that I can tailor my practice to my abilities. I may not be able to keep up with the class’s sun salutation pace, but I can do them very slowly at home. I can also spend the hour on a flow that is designed specifically to alleviate my pregnancy symptoms — lots of side stretching, hip openers, and restorative poses. (I can recreate my beloved yin yoga without actually twisting my uncooperative body into a pretzel!) I don’t have to give up my yoga practice at all — just continue modifying it. One of my 2012 intentions is to stay active and fit while listening to my body, and here is my first challenge.

Admittedly it is much easier to back off from the things I love knowing that I’ll have my baby in my arms within the next six weeks (or seven), but this does mean that, aside from the remaining prenatal sessions I have left, I don’t know when I’ll be able to take a class again. I plan to focus a lot on my home practice, but man, I want to learn how to do a headstand! And I’ll need a class for that. Still, that’s something that Mommy Amy is going to have to figure out, not 8 Months Pregnant Amy. It’s tempting to keep insisting that I can totally do it and to keep showing up at class, but I know I would just be trying to arbitrarily prove something — and that is not very yogic at all. Instead, I’ll continue feeling good that I was able to keep up with my regular practice until I literally got too big to be able to do it!