February 20 2011

Lisa Agostoni

“People often speak of living a normal life, but normal is relative. What may seem unmanageable for one person is the routine of another. I know my purpose. I know my normal. Do you know yours?”

I was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis in the 1970s, a time when there was little in the way of advanced medical treatments and very little hope. My parents, both medical professionals, chose not to listen to the doctors’ negative prognoses but decided to make my life as normal as possible. They taught me to be compliant with my treatments and medications – to make them a habit instead of a chore – and encouraged me to be physically active. By the time I was twelve, I participated in gymnastics, jazz, tap, and ballet, and saw medical treatments as an average daily activity. Because of my compliance and my physical health, my doctors increased my “expiration date” to twenty-one years old.

Twenty-one is a milestone year for everyone, but was a bittersweet year in my life. I had to have aggressive medical treatment for a respiratory infection for the first time in my life. I recovered, moved past my “expiration date,” and continued living my life the way I always have – medically compliant and physically active.

After I moved to Atlanta is my early 20s, I added tennis to my list of sports I enjoyed and played to stay physically fit. Several years later, I discovered yoga as a way to improve my tennis game and to manage anxiety. I quickly discovered that the rhythmic flow of vinyasa and pranayama help increases my breathe capacity – an issue with which all CF patients struggle. 

My love of yoga has grown over the years and so has my commitment to it. I passed my 200 hour teacher certification and am putting it to use around the Smyrna, Georgia area. I love teaching other how to achieve inner stillness and to balance their breath. Yoga is now a part of my daily compliancy routine – my way to stay healthy and balanced.

I am an interactive marketing manager during the day, a yoga teacher and blogger at night and on the weekends. I am inspired every day and am grateful for every breath I take. People often speak of living a normal life, but normal is relative. What may seem unmanageable for one person is the routine of another. I know my purpose. I know my normal. Do you know yours?