Friday, February 29, 2008
Aqua Man and I still disagree, five years later, on the labor time frame. He insists that I was actually-from the first moment of labor to when The Kid was delivered-in labor for 78 hours.
For whatever reason, I just can't handle adding on those extra six hours, although he may be right. I have the exact moment of when my labor began somewhere in a journal, but I've blocked it out (Where I put the journal, and the time frame!). I just don't want to internalize more hours, so I've conveniently rounded it down to a mere 72 hours, which apparently, my psyche can handle, thank you very much.
So at some point, five years ago, and 72 hours worth of labor, I gave birth to our beautiful baby boy, The Kid. And now, on this coming Sunday he turns 5 years old. Yes, that's right. Five years ago, I went into labor very early on a Friday morning, and The Kid was born on a Sunday evening. Do I know how to party, or what?
Thursday, February 28, 2008
done-person. So today may be all about annoying myself. Hooray! Although intense pain has a way of making a person mellow, just a leeetle bit, and I take the pain in my neck, back, and shoulders very seriously, in that I listen to it and know not to push it. It's been so long since I've felt this shoulder/neck/back pain that I actually forgot what it was like before I started practicing yoga three years ago--it used to be frequent and intense, and often my back would "give out." I am so freakin' grateful that I don't feel like that all of the time, anymore. I know with some restorative and gentle yoga stretches and breathing today that I'll be able to loosen up the area and get some relief.
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Although I don't frequent spas, (but, hey, I'm not opposed to them. I'm just saying, you know, in case the universe wants to send me on an all inclusive spa-trip.) I am starting to learn more about Ayurveda approaches, and thought this was an interesting article. The author gave a web address to Yoga Journal's on-line site, which will lead you here where you can take a quiz to identify your dominant Dosha(s). You'll also find other links on that page where you can learn more about Doshas and yoga.
So, I took the quiz and my dominant Dosha is a pitta with vata as a close second. I wasn't too surprised to discover this. Although, honestly, I didn't realize I was so intense most (read: all) of the time. Aqua Man assures me that I am. That must be why he's always like, "Hey, are you going to yoga class/getting ready to practice yoga at home? You are? THAT'S GREAT!"
How about you? What's your Dosha?
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
After dropping The Kid off at school this morning, I drove straight to the river park and walking path to sneak in a quick walk before I went home to get some things done. I needed the stress relief, big time. This Friday will be a day which will give Aqua Man and I more information about whether we will be staying here, in this city, or whether we will be relocating to another state, all together. And if the latter is the case, that move could happen very, very fast. I am excited and nervous; he is excited and nervous.
In the midst of all of the reality, I've made the choice to hold off on pitching new freelance work until the end of the week, but no matter the outcome, whether we stay here, or we move, I'll have to pull in more work. Either way, though, my work will shift, but each place will require different ways in which this will happen, almost all of which, I have no idea what that will really mean until I'm in it. I fully support this move, and believe that equally exciting opportunities will open up for me as a result of it, but it still leaves a lot of big details to come together. It's just a lot of unknowns, maybes and possibilities, right now. All of which are equally exciting and scary. Also, The Kid is turning 5 years old this Sunday. 5 years old! This is just blowing my mind, and giving me plenty to reflect on, as well. Knowing that these "big days" are approaching at the end of the week makes for some interesting ups and downs.
So, with all of this on my mind, I walked until I was eventually able to loosen my grip on my thoughts, and to just enjoy the surroundings. I didn't plan it, but when I eventually tired of walking, I was drawn to the end of the pier. And once on the end of the pier, I was drawn to do some light yoga and stretching, which then led me to a 20-minute sitting meditation practice.
At first I held back a little-a bit self-conscious of who might be looking at me-but slowly I got over that, and it was awesome to be outside practicing. The birds were flying and diving into the water, a rowing crew rowed by, the wind was steadily blowing, leaves were swirling at the end of the pier, and I could hear metal chimes ringing from across the other side of the river. And I felt intimately a part of it all. I was in my own little space, breathing my own mantra in and out, while connected to every ripple of the river, every bird, and every gust of wind. It was just a divine moment of unexpected peace.
The hardest part was coming out of meditation and leaving the outdoors. I truly felt like I could have stayed in meditation for the rest of the day, just breathing and sitting in stillness at the end of that pier. On my walk back to my car, the serenity and peace I had felt was quickly followed by a bit of sadness at leaving that space. I didn't want to go back home, be by myself, sitting inside, and face my work, my tasks, my to-do list.
I'm taking this feeling of being psychically separated from my serenity as a challenge and a lesson. The challenge, I think, is to find this serenity even when I'm not at the end of that pier-even in the face of to-do lists, and things that I might not want to do. I know this serenity always lies within me-as I believe it's in each one of us.
Sitting in my home office right now, typing this post, I can suddenly hear my neighbor's wind chimes ringing, birds chirping, and the blowing leaves, and I am transported back to the end of that pier, when I felt at peace and a part of everything. I wonder, was that chime ringing the whole time I was writing?
And there in lies my lesson, I think: I choose my focus. I can focus on the chitta in my mind, or I can just acknowledge it, and let it go. I can choose to bring myself to calming thoughts. Over, and over, and over, again, (yup, sometimes, its just like that), I can come back to the calm that already lies within.
Monday, February 25, 2008
I walked down our street and wound around the corner to discover an opening slightly covered by bushes and trees that then revealed the riverfront. I stepped from the street onto the grass walking path and the feeling instantly changed; it was a bit darker, and the air was slightly cooler. I could see birds flying and sitting on the water, yet there was a strange stillness to the overall atmosphere. I instantly noted the change, but was still mostly thinking, la, la, la. I'm taking a walk, and chilling out. This is so cool to live somewhere so different from where I've lived before, and... whaaaaattttt??!! ALLIGATOR??!! A-l-l-i-g-a-t-o-r???? No, for real. An alligator?!?! Holy Shit!
Now, for those of you who have lived in places where alligators are commonplace this sign would, of course, not be a shocking discovery. But, having previously lived in places that have no alligators nearby--zip, zero--I couldn't believe that this sign was for real. I mean, alligators living in the water about four blocks away? Yes, yes that's right. Well…that’ll put a new twist on outdoor activities such as swimming, boating, and just talking a walk along the water. Wow.
This sign makes me wonder though, what if all potential dangers or repercussions were posted as clearly and prominently in life? Would you take the warning of potential danger or repercussions into consideration before entering into a situation, or making a decision? Would a sign so blatant as this, warning of potential dangers, keep you from traveling down a certain path? Do you think that there are times when warnings have been given to you this clearly in life, but you decided to tune them out and go down a certain path anyway?
I know that in the course of my life, I've ignored some blatant warning signs in different areas of my life. I can look back and see that, although small at first, warnings were often present, and I might have missed them at first. Sometimes, over time, those warning signs would grow larger and more frequent, if I continued to ignore them. And on many occasions, I still choose to ignore them. Live and learn, is how I view those experiences, and I take them forward into my life today.
But when it comes to this sign? Sure thing! No, problem. You got it! This is one warning sign that I will definitely heed.
Saturday, February 23, 2008
Friday, February 22, 2008
So, lets try this again.....a happy Friday to all!
Now, let's see where this post ends up.
Thursday, February 21, 2008
Learning to observe and just let go of resistance rather than engaging its essence, is really where its at, me thinks. Much easier said than done though, for sure.
Earlier this week, while flipping through books and on-line journals, I found an article at Yoga Journal about overcoming resistance. A few ideas in this piece resonated with me, so I thought I'd pass it on (I have a "Take what you like and leave the rest" attitude when it comes to reading articles, books, etc.). Perhaps someone else may find something interesting, useful, or helpful in this article, as well.
Wishing all a happy Friday, free of (negative) resistance!
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Friday, February 15, 2008
Thursday, February 14, 2008
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
I'm not very good with stress. I mean some stress? Sure, okay. But an onslaught of it? Um, yea, that's not my trademark for being in the zone. Generally speaking, I like to keep things even keel whenever possible, but circumstances don't always agree with this. (Damn circumstances.) Right now, some of the stress is coming from negative sources and some from positive sources, if you will. Overall it just gives me a general feeling of running a bit on the high side and feeling, well, stressed out.
During times of concentrated stress and much to do, I usually end up shortening my home yoga practice. But during stressful times, I also like to focus on balance poses during the time I do practice. Balance poses help me, literally, get in touch with how balanced or imbalanced I may be in the face of said stress.
So, today I focused on this pose. I've been working on this one for over two years. Originally, it took me about one year to get to the place where I could get myself up and not fall over. (Several face plants were part of my early attempts, for sure!) Over the two years time, I see that the "quality" of my pose reflects the quality of my inner mind frame.
So, today, I was amazed and surprised to learn that I was steady, strong, and able to hold Crow Pose for longer than I ever have before. It was a true revelation to learn that even in the face of lots of stress that I am maintaining my inner balance. And it was only through yoga that I was able to get in touch with this. Truly awesome. And I am very grateful for this surprising knowledge. Yea, Crow Pose!
P.S. I also believe my "inner balance" to be in better shape than I suspected because I recently had several lengthy phone calls with one of my best friends--who shall hence forth be referred to as BFF1--and my sis and bro, as well. Aagh, the sweet relief of venting. Thanks BFF1 and siblings!
Friday, February 8, 2008
But this morning, since The Kid was up so early he expected his morning snuggle. He was a bit taken aback that I hadn't thought of it myself (Um, okay, listen. You just walked out. It's still dark. Coffee is a distant thought. Work with me, will you?) Yea, what was I thinking? HELLO! You are awake, I am awake. There-fore I should be snuggling you, not practicing yoga in the dark . Of course, makes perfect sense.
So, we lay down together and after a few moments of quiet, The Kid turned to me and began a word game that we used to play when he was younger.
"Mommy, I love you SOOOOOO much."
"I love you, SOOOOOO much."
"Mommy, I love you one hundred-fifty thousand!"
"Wow. I love you one million!"
"Mommy, I love you fifty million!"
"Well, I love you to the moon and back. "
"Mommy, I love you to Kenya. And to Florida and Chicago and New York."
Thursday, February 7, 2008
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
Okay, we get it! You LOVE winning. And your number one coaching goal is to take our 4 and 5 year old children and turn them into lean, mean, winning soccer machines. You dream of us taking our kids home and speaking of nothing but the importance of winning--how great it is; how important it is; how good it feels. All right, already!
Poor guy. It's very comical, actually, as these kids can barely run without falling, tripping (themselves and each other), and talking the whole time. I think this coach might have been better suited to teach older kids who actually understand the fundamentals of the game, and can actually, um, play. Perhaps this would have helped lead him to his ultimate goal of coaching a winning team.
Yes, it was that ridiculous. Not to mention hilarious.
Monday, February 4, 2008
I kept The Kid home with me today in order to make sure things are all good. And now the "fun" begins...and that's all I'm going to say on that front.
Saturday, February 2, 2008
Friday, February 1, 2008
I couldn't sleep last night, which is very unusual for me. Those who know me, so know that I can ALWAYS sleep at night. I'm a morning person who pretty much has consistent energy all day until around 7 p.m. That's when my brain starts to shut down, and by 9 p.m., I'm done. I'm tired. And when I'm tired, I can't fake it. I try, though. I smile, I nod, I listen. But...sooner, rather than later, I go down like a ton of bricks. I pretty much have to go to sleep right away. At the extreme of it, I've been known to fall asleep in the middle of conversations with Aqua Man (and that was when we were first dating, way before parenthood, and for some reason he said "that's the gal for me!" go figure.); while talking on the phone with one of my closest friends (post-motherhood on maternity leave); and generally every night on the couch (just regular life. yea, I'm exciting like that). So to not be able to fall asleep is a very strange experience.
To pass the time, I decided to text message a friend in a different time zone to see if she had made it out of her snowy city and had arrived safely at her sunny vacation destination. We texted back and forth for a few minutes, but then our texts stalled. When I realized that I was still wide awake at about 1:30 a.m., I decided to embrace my lack of sleepiness and make it meditation time. I knew that the tension from my day was still coursing through my body, so I decided to stop avoiding it and to just acknowledge it. In the dark, lit only by faint moonlight streaming in through the blinds, I began some light yoga stretching and asanas. When my body calmed, I put a blanket down on the couch, settled in and focused on deep breathing. Eventually I was able to calm both my mind and body while repeating a favorite mantra.
I didn't know how much time had passed, but I awoke to the sound of my cell phone signaling that I had received a new text message. I sat up, totally disoriented, and realized...Joy! I had been asleep. My wee-morning hour mediation had done the trick. Happily, I was able to go back to sleep and stay asleep until this morning at my regular wake up time.
Although, I also realized that, now I would have to officially add falling asleep in the middle of text messaging to my list of rude sleep behaviors. Bummer.