Thursday, January 29, 2015

Why?

This morning during my run, the question "why" came up.  Why in the world did I agree to a half-marathon?  Why in the world am I devoting a lot of me time to something I don't particuarly enjoy all the time?  Why am I adding to my stress by continously pushing my body?   When I started walking and taking some deeper breaths, I stopped asking those questions and began paying attention to my body, not my mind.

I am currently doing interval training, which means I walk for a minute and run for a minute, I enjoy this more than straight running because I don't get bored and I get these mini "breaks"  to change that chatter in my head.  

I changed the chatter in my head, not by answering the questions, I left words and just paid attention to how my body was feeling.  I could feel the warmth circulating through out my body, the little stabilizing muscles in my feet, I could feel my tight calves, and I was breathing.   I know it seems like I was using words to describe how my body was feeling at the time, I am just translating the moment for you all.  In short my body was alive, it was showing me gratitude for using it, and also telling me where I need to be gentle with it.   

I am getting to know my body in a different way when I run and that is one reason why I am doing this.  

Question to consider: Does your mind protest your exercise routine?   What do you do in those moments?  

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

A teacher's joy

On Saturday night, I had the pleasure of seeing my friend, Jason's first solo performance on the Tablas.  It has been amazing to see him dedicate himself to this performance since I mentioned it to him a couple of months ago, he worked so hard on the pieces he was presenting.  That doesn't include the years of dedication before that moment.

One of my favorite parts of the performance was watching his teacher's joy, hearing him explain the skill it takes to play this instrument, and watching him continue to teach.    The relationship between a student and teacher is very beautiful to me and to watch that relationship as an observer was spectacular!    

It was also amazing to watch the diverse audience, consisting of Tabla players, and people who were unfamiliar with the instrument just enter the space and absorb the music.   Jason's passion for the instrument is obvious and he really invited us in to the experience.  

Question to consider:  What do you do that brings out your passion?  How do you display your spirit in your life?

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

"Okay"

I ask the question "will it be okay?"  a lot.  I would like some certainty that everything will work out for the best, I tend to feel fear whenever something changes. The oterh day when I was talking to someone about an issue, I figured I don't really even have a concept of what "okay" is.   

What am I looking for in the moment when that question comes up?  Is it the same as what everyone is looking for when they feel afraid, intimidated, terrified ect....   My guess is that people want comfort, which seems like a simple answer.

What does comfort look like?   Is it a hug, is it space, is it a cookie, is it a favorite meal, is it time to do a yoga practice, read a book, watch TV or ten thousand other possiblities?

I guess the best we can do, is keep offering the comfort to others and learn what it is they want.   Just because we offer the "wrong" thing has nothing to do with us, it just means they need something different.  Keep going and see what happens!

Question to condsider:  What are comforting things in your life?

Friday, January 16, 2015

The Sun

The sun came out yesterday!  It was this magnificent moment in yoga class, when things brightened up and everyone let out a sigh of relief, basking in the sunlight!   It was feeling pretty cold and gloomy here in Houston, and my energy was super low.   Desspite that fact I continued to push myself and continue to set up meetings with people and work on yoga classes.  However as the sky darkened, I had wanted to stay home and curl up in bed with the pup and rest.

I started to feel stressed, as my planner continued to fill up and my energy dropped.  So I walked out of class this morning at 8 AM, not really wanting to drive downtown to look into teaching classes at an outreach center downtown.   I sat in my car for a while, mapping the drive and attempting to figure out what the parking situation might be like.   Then I simply decided I was being a little silly, I would find out the parking situation when I got there, I just needed to dive in.

All of these meetings and requests are exactly what I asked for, I asked to be more involved in the community, I asked for people to help, I asked to learn how to be a healer.  Now I get to figure out what programs are a fit for me and which ones are not.  The only way I will figure it out is to get out of my head and get out there.

So I introduced myself in class today and the instructor immediately spoke up and asked me to lead a guided meditation at the end of class.  (That was the moment, the moment I could chose "yes" or "no.")   I said "yes,"  then immediately the butterflies started in my stomach, and I quickly decided to enjoy those butterflies, and still do my work.   

I am talking to a group of about 30 people next week about what I do, to see if they want me to teach them qigong, yoga and meditation.   Those butterflies are small and everyday they get a bit biggger.  Mostly I hear them say "you are not enough."  Time to make friends with those butterflies too and let their wings carry me through that talk as well!

Question to consider:  What gives you "butterflies?"  The good butterflies and the bad butterflies?  Maybe it is all related.   I love teaching, and am not fond of public speaking.  

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Worth

Recently I had a tiny little epiphany, and I am sharing it here so that I can remember.

I struggle with self-worth a lot.  I tend to self sabotage myself, as some sort of punishment because I don't think I am worth it.

This particularly comes up at times when I feel ill and don't feel like I am doing my "part" at home.  Since I left my job, I tend to do most of the household chores, cleaning, cooking, laundry...ect.   It makes sense, I am generally have more time at home and some of those things I truly enjoy and others create an environment I enjoy.   The problem comes up when I believe that me taking care of those necessities of life is the only thing that matters in Adam's and my relationship.  

So Monday when I was doing laundry a thought came up.  My role that I love to play in our relationship is to support Adam the best way I can.  To give him time and space to do what he truly loves.  Right now taking care of the household duties is the best way I can support him, when that changes I will change too.  

I confuse what I do for our home with who I am.  The reality is that I am a loving, supportive wife that happens to be unemployed, a volunteer for various organizations, a dog walker, a housekeeper, a cook....ect.   So on the evenings that I feel sick and didn't do my "job" and Adam decides to surprise me with dinner, he is bringing home that supportive, beautiful wife dinner, not the housekeeper.

We are all doing the best we can!  Go a little easier on yourself, especially if you need that extra dose of gentleness and kindness.


Friday, January 9, 2015

Oil paints

I got this brilliant idea of a painting i wanted to do and decided I wanted to experiment with some oil paints a friend got me.  (I know nothing about oil paints, I still know nothing about oil paints.)

This is not what I wanted my painting to look like, not really sure I even like what this is.  Here is what I learned.  

There is something wild about oil painting.
The brushes are a pain to clean.
In the future it might be helpful to know something about the medium I am using.
I do enjoy making a mess!

Question to consider: Do you have experience with oil paints, care to share some tips?

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

The Boulder

"Sometimes the boulder is your path..."   My teacher likes to point out that the course of life doesn't always go smooth or to plan.  Sometimes you can be walking your path and a boulder drops right in front of you, which now makes the boulder your path.   Complaining about the boulder doesn't help move it, sometimes you have to accept what is.

When I am working on a project or goal I tend to not slow down. So when I signed up for a half marathon and came up with my training schedule, I was determined to stick to making the long runs happen every week.  I was committed to adding time/distance to those weekly runs and to gaining comptence with running longer distances.  I like having a plan, and I tend to get upset when things don't go according to plan.

When I fell on New Year's Day, I ended up with some pretty bruises on my knee and foot.  I let myself miss one running day, mostly because there was no way I could get my shoes on.   Well one day continued to turn into the next day, because the swelling wasn't going down and the pain wasn't really decreasing.  Needless to say I have been very frustrated about not being able to run and Adam has gotten to see some dramatic meltdowns. 

Adam has been helping me a lot with seeing how it is still going to be okay.  How running on a hurt leg is not going to help my training and how taking it easy might be my practice right now.  

So instead of running, doing yoga, or going to work I have gotten to read, watch some TV, sleep and paint.   

I still feel this huge fear that I am not doing enough to meet my goals and come the day of the race I won't  be able to finish.  Then I remind myself I am not going to run a half marathon, I am going to spend time with Ashley.   

Question to consider:  What boulder is in your path right now?  

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year

I have heard that how one spends New Year's Day is a good predictor for the upcoming year.

If that is the case then I am feeling lots of gratitude and excitement for 2015.   Today was one of those days that didn't quite go according to plan and yet everything was wonderful and amazing.   We started the morning off with a fantastic yoga class, and since I have been nursing my right side a little bit.  I got to keep asking myself "what can I do?"  I got to explore poses, and figure out how I could make it comfortable, and be gentle with myself when the pose just wasn't going to be helpful.  

Then a last minute decision was made and we headed to a birthday party at a Chinese restaraunt.  Right as I stepped onto the marble porch, my shoes slipped and I hit the ground.   I was surrounded my friends willing to give me a moment to compose myself, tell a few jokes and work on my newly bruised foot and knee.   I have so much gratitude for those ladies, to take the time to take care of me.

After the party Adam and I headed home for some relaxation and rest.   

I am really looking forward to see how the present moments continue to unfold and see what 2015 has in store for everyone.

Question to consider: What did you find wonder in today?