My Youngest Daughter

Annaleigh Grilo.jpeg

Dear Practice Yoga Community, 

I am writing to you from Nicklaus Children’s Hospital in Miami. My youngest daughter, Annaleigh who is 16 years old, was admitted early Monday morning and since has been diagnosed with a malignant tumor on her left thigh.

As you can imagine, this is an email I never envisioned writing, let alone my first email to our community as we launch the opening of our new beautiful studio. 

When I envisioned Practice Yoga, it was a space that fostered community, where people felt supported, empowered, and connected. My vision was that this was a service that we offered and I never imagined that I would be the one who would need it the most. 

My commitment over the next several months is first and foremost for my daughter and my family. I do this knowing that I can count on you, the community that we have created together for support and love. 

The studio is in the very competent hands and leadership of Mollie, who has managed everything in the studio even before this happened, and our amazing team of teachers. Having them in place has enabled me to completely focus on Annaleigh, Juliana, my oldest daughter, and Pierre.  

I will not be on the regular schedule for now. I need time and space to understand and navigate what my new normal will be. You will see me on my mat and I will teach whenever I can. 

There is an Iyengar Quote, “Practice when you can, you will need it when you can’t.” These words have been playing in my head all week as I have experienced extreme ranges in emotion, I have laughed, cried, felt fear and sadness, and immense gratitude, and I have breathed through it all. This has been an extreme opportunity to use the tools I have spent the better part of my life developing. This is what it means to Practice and I am grateful for all the teachers/experiences I have had that have challenged me, because they prepared me for this moment.

So many people have offered support and ask how they can help. I have regularly been brought to tears by the kindness and compassion of those who have reached out. Know that your support helps bolster us up.

Please continue to show up on your mats, practice, connect to yourself and our community. I am grateful to have all of you in my life and as members of Practice Yoga. I know that my family will get through this because of all of you. 

Filled with Love & Gratitude,
Debi Grilo

Debi Grilo