Asstanga Yoga

Before the year ended, I took a 7 am Ashtanga yoga class from a woman teacher I’d never met before at the yoga studio I’ve gone to for 15 years. The fact that the class is only an hour as opposed to the usual hour and a half and is at 7 am in the morning really gives it a different feel. For the first time in 15 years, I was willing to change my habitual 15 year old downward dog stance to one which stretches my sacral/sitz bones area by pulling my hips further back and not allowing my heels to touch the floor.

This change has done some interesting things to my lower pelvis fore and aft. I have had both the back sacrum and front of my hips become something I’m way more aware of, get tighter and more open at the same time. I’ve also begun finally doing the chatteranga part of the vinyasa the way it’s supposed to instead of doing a flapjack sort of reverse vinyasa, though I skip planking and drop my knees down.
My Warrior 1 poses are crap, but I’m not worrying about them being good as I am re-introducing my body to classic Ashtanga, and I’m patient because I am not maintaining a strict daily practice.

I’m grateful to be able to be as active, flexible and out of pain as I am. And yet I sure would like to change my stuffed sausage torso and release all the excess flesh I’m carrying which is at least 50 lbs.
I can’t imagine my sanity or my health without yoga, and yet I forget almost all the time that it is there, and how much I have used it. I’m wondering now if a candida cleanse I have heard about for many a year and wanted to do will actually help me shed the excess pounds I’ve had for too many years. I wish I knew for sure. In the meantime, I’m feeling my ass end like never before.

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Can You Say Puborectal Muscle?

Today I watched a very detailed visual representation on why squatting is the way to defecate, as opposed to sitting on a toilet. I’ve known for about this information for at least 5 years, having spent years trying to deal with a sagging and swollen fat body, chronic constipation, overeating, food allergies and spending quite a bit of time and money getting colonics. Yes, that is one of those situations where you get a tube stuck up your anus and have water flushed in and out to remove stagnated poo and toxins.

I have a “Welles Step” I bought from the colonic hydrologist, which puts the feet up higher when using the toilet to put the body in the right squatting position. I haven’t been using it for years, partially because I live with someone who is so obsessive about germs and fecal matters to the point of hysteria, and partially because this unfamiliar position was awkward and foreign, despite the science behind it.I’ve known I should be squatting for some time, having suffered from constipation, varicose veins in my inner knees, two hemorrhoids,and having a distended, puffed up upper and lower abdomen. My torso looks like a balloon animal. I’m 50 lbs overweight and my upper arms, thighs, armpits and other areas are puffed up as well as my front guts and buttocks.

Now there are plenty of yoga and mobility teachers exhorting us all to do squats and stay in them for numerous reasons, yet I’ve found them hard to do. An overweight body literally impedes movement like that and it can be painful and cause injuries, something I have actively avoided a lot in the last 10 years. Now it’s 2 days I’ve begun using the Welles Step or another way of being in the proper position and I’ve experienced minor soreness in my hips and glutes that can only be from how much I’ve been squatting. By making a point of squatting some off the times I go to the bathroom, I am accomplishing what has seemed impossible. So now I’m breathing and squatting, and I feel good, though I look fatter than ever. I’ve also been eating a diet much higher in good fats and my elimination has gotten better than it’s been for years.

Yesterday in yoga I had the surprising experience of feeling two matching internal areas in my lower sacrum open up. It was strange and awesome. I’ve been doing my downward dogs differently, pushing back into the sitz bones more, after never for 15 years. Today I did 10 sun salutes in an Ashtanga yoga class without feeling icky, though the B ones were no where near what they are sposed to be. I’m still in “remembering to breathe 1A.” My hips are far from open and my ankles never seem to like me sitting on my knees, no matter how much “toe breaking” kneels I do. My knees are not in pain the way they used to be, but I’m careful of them, well aware of the varicose veins and broken capillaries I can see at the crease of my knees.

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See the Little Pufferbelly

My parents taught me a song when I was a kid while we were camping that went as follows:

Down by the Station, early in the Morning.
See the little Pufferbellies all in a Row.
See the station master turn the little handle
Puff Puff, Toot toot, off they go!

As the new year begins, I am all too aware that I have a Pufferbelly. I am definitely NOT a steam locomotive, what I have is a balloned out gut, despite endless attempts to de-tox, juice fast, get colonics, change my diet,exercise and whatever. I started doing the Bulletproof coffee, which jumped my weight up and down for about 2 weeks, but then I couldn’t do it for awhile and began eating flour out of the insanity of the triple whammy of 3 holidays in a row: Thanksgiving, Xmas and New Year. I knew somehow New Year’s was going to be risky, could feel it.

And it was. I went to 4 12 step meetings, one part of an alkathon, and a 2 hour yoga class, and the man I live with got blackout drunk and got himself arrested. The arrest was not a shock, but the aftermath has been the same old same old limbo I live where focusing on what I need to do is difficult to near impossible. I had a real attack of anxiety after the dust settled from the arrest. It dawned on me that the big A is what has been going on since forever in my life, undetected in my earlier years and blithely ignored in the energetic and vibrant life energy of my teenage and young adult years, but THERE none the less. When I fell through the cracks of a supposed to be achieving life of my thirties, despair and confusion began ruling things, and my forties saw me sliding down into an abyss I’ve never quite left, though amino acid therapy changed my mental health significantly for good. I’ve never been able to fully grasp WTF was wrong with me besides the usual ignorance and flaming immaturity.

A few years back, and I can’t remember exactly how many, I dragged the guy who was drinking at the time and suffering from YEP, ANXIETY, to an Art of Living course after reading a book on how yoga and breathing can alleviate depression and anxiety in people. The centerpiece of the workshop was the Sudarshon Kriya, a set of slow breathing while you count, bellows breathing, where you flood your lungs, and some pranayama fire breathing to three different meters: slow, medium and fast. It works if you do it everyday, just as all the other forms of breathing I have repeatedly studied do. Chi Kung, Astanga Ujiac breath, Rebirthing, Reichian breathing, the list goes on. And FINALLY I know I can get myself to do it. EVERYDAY. I have been doing it, and throwing in some sun salutes, mixing it up. I seem to have arrived at BEING ABLE TO PRACTICE. Drums and Breathing. At 60, all I can say to myself is better late than never.

It has also occurred to me getting outside, walking barefoot, and getting an Earthing pad for my bed will add to the effect of my grounding, which has been deficient all my life. Without it, I have been a ship adrift, and I’m excited to finally have a clue what has been wrong. I don’t imagine the breathing will take away my pufferbelly or solve all my problems, but it is a start. And it’s start that I can do, right here, right now, everyday, no matter where I am or what I’m doing. And I think I’m going to look up a local Art of Living teacher and do a refresher. I might as well, having wasted so much time running in circles and relearning the same thing in zillions of forms but never keeping it up.

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Merry Choppa Christmas 2014

The sun is shining, and a cold little breeze is blowing off the Maverick’s Bluffs. My conga drums are sitting in my little backyard with a chair. I’ve had a good morning. I was woken up this morning by my guy, who is still stuck in the idea he can drink a couple of beers and be OK. He managed to not be completely nutso and said a few good things before I got up and made it to a meeting where I was invited to read something and share. I’m grateful for all that as last night was nearly a night having to be somewhere else besides home for me.

After the meeting, which was well attended and congenial, I headed for a coffee shop I’d heard was open and picked up a couple of croissants. I called the guy and he wanted a chocolate filled one, and I got a plain one. We snarfed them down and then I made a real breakfast for me of sausage, hash browns, and 2 soft boiled eggs. The guy has four days off his stressful job, which has become a problem for him after 12 days of hard work with no breaks and a boss who’s ways of communicating suck. Though he is trying not to, he is unable to stop obsessing and negging about it all, and dump/yacking it at me with all it’s poison periodically.

I’m learning something new now, which is not to hang around and take it without going to war or trying to stop it. Last night, after he came home raging and ranting about how the bank had ripped him off( i.e, he was overdrawn), I left, because he was in the mode where nothing, especially me hanging around to listen and then have to say stuff he doesn’t want to hear, like “Calm the fuck down” works. The more I leave and the more peaceful I get, the more some part of him comes forward and has to handle things on it’s own.

Even though he managed to call me, apologize and hold himself together enough to do dinner because he didn’t want to be alone, he drank while I was getting the food( and I knew he might} The anxiety bullyragging continued somewhat after dinner. I told him I was going out for a walk, left, went for a walk I enjoyed, saw Christmas lights, and came home refreshed.It’s really slow, like a drop of water on a stone, but some inner part of him is getting the message I am not going to take it anymore.

I’ve sat down now and played my 20-20 cuban rhythm bits outside.I do 20 times with each hand leading for 20 minutes and today I really enjoyed it. I haven’t been doing it lately and I can feel the names fading, so it’s time to remember to practice more often. It’s only 20 minutes, after all, and the satisfaction I feel being able to do it is enormous.

I opened my Christmas gifts and got a charming little plaid fleece throw from my niece, a little white zip bag with an S on it from her also, and the requisite jammies from my oldest sister. I have to wonder if she’s actually read my blog, because she sent me a large, non flannel set, red, with crazy animal skin pattern colored coffee cups on it. They are quite jazzy, and now I will have to get some pictures taken wearing them with my Bulletproof coffee in hand to post on FB.

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I have had a very painful, but fruitful morning. For 3 days now I have been trying to accomplish some necessary tasks and experiencing a failure to launch. I’ve been like a plane that’s stalling before it takes off. I finally sat down and deliberately entered my inner turmoil, confusion, shame, and fear. I started calling people and leaving messages after 33333333333ing tons. The 3 is the “erase and re-record” prompt. It’s a way for me to hear myself and what is trying to emerge emotionally. Underneath the shame and fear was my hurt, and I’m hurting still, but I’m glad to be feeling it.

Not three days ago I got accused of deliberately smearing fecal material on a fan switch in the bathroom of MY house, as if that could EVER be true. Whatever was actually on the switch was microscopic and IT WAS NOT MY SHIT. I told him: “Call County Health. Get a Restraining Order. Call the Police. I never,ever, want to see you again.” I left for hours,called people, went to a meeting. I missed my “safe house” connection and by the time they called me, I was at my house and didn’t want to be anywhere else because it was dark and quiet.

I want to be able to leave and not come back without losing my home. I do not want to get a restraining order to forcibly evict a man I’ve tried to nurture for 30 years, despite his insanity. I know why and where it comes from. I had a man tell me he was glad his wife divorced him or he would never have gotten sober and found out who he really was. Now I have the pain of realizing everything I have done has contributed to him not having to change for his own sake. I’m worse off because I haven’t allowed myself to feel the pain of 30 years of hell. Now I’m feeling it, and it really hurts. I know there is a matrix of grief in there which has never been let out.

I’m discovering that when I allow the hurt in, it leads me to withdrawing from everything in the fear I will be obliterated and not survive.
I don’t trust that the people who have already been supporting me will continue. If my blood family didn’t care, they why will they? I’m sure that they despise me, and there is a silent wall of unpredictable need and a compulsive desire to not show vulnerability to them and risk rejection and abandonment for good.

Now I’ve broken through the enormous, heart wrenching lie of my deep unworthiness. I’m still hurting, but I’ve spoken to people who know me and know the truth about what is happening that are willing to continue encouraging and supporting me. I’m absolutely stunned at how much I have used distraction to avoid feeling it, and stayed disconnected from ever getting anywhere in my life.
I have left messages or talked with the people I have been shunning internally in order to avoid being shunned. Wow. Feeling is very tiring work.

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Back to a 38

A few months back, I got a white Bali “Flower” bra, size 36C and I wore and wore it and wore it, until one of the small figure 8 keepers that adjusts the length of the front straps cracked. The strap came apart and I couldn’t wear the bra. The strain of it being smaller than I am really is what cracked it.

I stalled on dealing with it, and was wearing a black and green striped cup bra I got for bellydancing that was thin elastic-wise around the ribcage. It certainly created cleavage but didn’t have much support, and I began to feel too “Boobalicious” for my own comfort.

I then tried to repair my original bra going to a fabric/DIY craft store and trying to find the the figure 8 keeper. They had some, but not the right size. I tried to re-thread the strap loop onto the cracked keeper. NOT happening. After roaming through another craft store, which didn’t have anything remotely usable, I gave up, went to Sears and bought myself another brand-new, white, “Flower” Bali bra on sale, size 38C. And I feel supported, gooshy,hanging fat and all.

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Death of a Seagull

Two days ago I killed a big, beautiful, seagull. I pulled into a large parking lot behind a fast food chicken joint in my town and ran over it. The bird had been just landing, wings flapping, on the pavement between a hedge and the other cars, when I came along with my monstrous and heavy car, not fast but too close for reaction time to hit the brake. It tried to fly up but I was too close. I hated watching it rolling into a crushed, dead heap in my side mirror behind me.

I sat there and screamed and cried for some time. I was already distraught from a fight with my partner. I called my sponsor. I left sobbing and yelling messages for someone else. Then I called my guy to tell him I was going to come home and get a shovel, gloves and garbage bag to bury the bird I murdered. He offered to come help me bury the bird despite previous things said to me. I said yes, and we did it.

The seagull I killed was incredibly beautiful and large. It’s thick, soft grey plumage, danging neck and head, strong wings, perfect feet, along with strings of orange intestines hanging out broke my heart. In the parking lot where we used a flat shovel to scoop up the bird’s body, there had been a bit of red organ tossed into the bushes which had been driven out of the seagull’s body when I drove over it. I made myself look at the whole bird, place it into the large hole we dug carefully, memorize everything I had destroyed. My tears flowed onto the bird’s body and into the soil. I don’t remember when I have cried as fully as I did then. I tried to layer the soil carefully over the bird, put some sea snail shells and a delicate little white and yellow mushroom that had popped up nearby on top.

Seagulls are scavengers, and I’m sure they eat a number of things alive. They have sharp beaks which tear apart whatever they eat, and, beautiful as they are, aren’t known for being nice. They are as ruthless as us humans when it comes to eating. I wonder now if I would be able to stop eating animals if I had to witness the torture and murder they endure being slaughtered for human consumption. I don’t know how I should feel, think or be with this, but I’m clear on one thing: I hated killing the seagull just because I wasn’t paying enough attention.

I’d like to believe this somehow represents how much I have not been aware of and not paying attention to some aspect of myself, but I avoiding becoming attached emotionally to that conclusion. I know I was actively mourning and grieving more than the bird’s death.

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Unsubscribing on Giving Tuesday

I have found myself online deluged by the usual tons of emails talking about “Giving Tuesday”. The tone is that I ought to donate to whatever it is because it’s “Giving Tuesday”. I guess this is the aftermath of “Black Tuesday” which I take to mean merchants put themselves “in the black” by the after Thanksgiving sales. I’ve been unsubscribing a lot today and yesterday. I don’t know why I haven’t done it a lot sooner. The interesting thing is that I’ve been tolerating tons of email crap daily for god knows how long. Years. I’m finally clear I don’t need them anymore.

My home situation has become unbearable. Ican’t live with alcohol and drug abuse.
All my suffering, the humiliation and fear, the Al Anon meetings, the floundering and trying to get past this have failed. All my women friends have passed through this getting rid of a bad or dangerous partner thing and survived. They went through a lot of pain and anguish but they are free today. I hate this, and I hate me. I want to UNSUBSCRIBE.

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Let Me See If I Understand You Correctly

I posted a comment recently on Facebook in regard to a man I follow. He trains police, military personell and firemen in mobility and fitness. I mentioned the city Swat team he would be training, the city where they would be training in, and said that he should give them riot gear made out of Nerf balls for peaceful protestors. His response was swift. He told me not to post “such inflammatory” remarks about the men and women he trains.

I was caught by surprise because this guy posts an enormous amount of material on tolerance. I deleted my remark, but have felt icky ever since. He’s a pretty big deal, and I am one of his fitness customer/consumers. I found it disturbing he would not take my remark well because we are living in an age where policemen are now shooting and killing unarmed people without being held accountable, and they are killing mentally ill people also, with lame excuses that they felt threatened. I am resisting the urge to debate anything with him, because it is a huge can of worms I don’t feel capable of opening. And yet, what makes him so righteous about this? Just because he trains them and knows them as people does not mean what they do is above question.

I have heard of people who have been teargassed, tazed, hot pepper sprayed, arrested, hit with beanbags, beaten, and even killed. I don’t know anyone personally who has been badly harmed though I know of 2 people who witnessed some of the Occupy violence of police in San Francisco and Oakland. I don’t know what it means to be one of these people, but I do know this: They are under orders, and if they are ordered to forcibly remove or harm protestors, they must do it. And I know they serve me and everyone by risking their lives dealing with dangerous criminals. Further, these people are under the authority of politicians and officers whom they do not get to question or weigh. Their livelihood depends on their obedience to big city police departments well known for corruption.

I realize that these people also have to deal with not only dangerous criminals but abuse from common citizens, including protestors who may or may not be armed, throwing bottles and rocks, baiting them and so on. There’s not a whole lot of press about people quitting police departments because they believe what they are being ordered to do is wrong. But I do know Whistleblowers in many other levels of our society are being persecuted in this age in horrifying ways by our government. Many believe democracy as we once knew it is dead.

I can also see that I want to worship this man, have him on a pedestal. Perhaps it’s time I take a look at that and stop.
Now it is a couple days later, and I read a new share from the guy which is an article about how police die from the stress of their job. I left a couple of comments, one which recommended a book written by a police captain about the same subject and talks about new programs some police departments have to help fire and police personnel
recover from the horrible PTSD they get from overwork, the super being role they have to play on their jobs, and the toll contact with so much death and evil takes on them. I then left a paragraph about my father and uncle being military, and the fact I respect police, contrary to conclusions made. I said the remark was not meant to be inflammatory, only that I feel for police who are ordered to remove protestors forcibly. I got a smart ass retort back, saying that it sounded like I was making an indictment. I am glad I mentioned my Dad and Uncle on Veteran’s Day.

I found out I couldn’t answer back, as the original comment has been deleted. I’m glad I have no choice at the moment. If that is really him making these comments, then he ain’t the saint he paints himself to be. The good news is that it now doesn’t matter. I don’t have to like or approve of him, nor he me. We are not friends, nor is it likely we will ever be, even if I continue to study his stuff and get certified in any of it. I can be glad for what he has brought the world without having to give a damn about him personally.

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Lost in a Life of Distraction

Today I asked myself a question I have never asked myself before. It was what would my life be like if I was rarely or never in distraction. I’ve been putting off finding out how much money I have and dealing with several upcoming bills it would be advisable to pay and not ignore. Two are car insurance renewals, and two are for a traffic violation and traffic school enrollment.

I actually went to the library today and sat down at a table, deliberately DID NOT go online, where I have the habit of getting lost in emails and looking at Facebook. I was rewarded by discovering I have enough money to pay the most pressing of these looming disasters to be today. This was also a result of me finally looking at what has been plaguing me most of my life, which is an inability to focus on creating and receiving success on the work/job/life career and love level. God knows I’ve chased learning about it, but have remained lost, permanently at sea, drifting from one thing to another.

This morning, while fiercely persisting in silently meditating about everything, I felt a huge wave of an inner shout. My mind said “WAIT A MINUTE. Something is really wrong here and there must be a specific answer or set of answers as to what it is and how I can change it. All this endless never getting anywhere stuff is bullshit.” My guy, who is finally growing a little heart awareness, had gone with me to the beach and we’d gotten caught in the rain and had an actual bonding experience. We came home to a warm and secure house, stripping off our wet clothes. All was well until he started cooking one of his classic meals of tater tots, fried egg with cheese and toast. He started having toast/toaster and kitchen issues.

Everything was all wrong. The kitchen is too small. The sourdough bread is too small, doesn’t fit into the toaster right. What are we doing with this awful toaster that only toasts enough toast for 2 people? He hates cooking. He hates the house. The war with objects began looping into a self hating distorted mess of crazy, so I began contemplating fetching my car keys and leaving. He saw me going to that place amid the rain of super neggy distorted perceptual , snapped out of it long enough to say: “Don’t leave”. He said it twice.

I stayed, we ate, and he calmed down enough to leave angry nutbar land. Wonders will never cease. But there is something very wrong with me and I think it’s an addiction to confusion, aversion and distraction. This was because I have spent my entire life around unhappy, unconscious people who didn’t or don’t know how to find and face truth. I intend to break this situation for myself, come hell or high water.

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