This is as good an early morning as any to admit that getting up before dawn to breathe deeply as I contort myself into poses my body has no way of holding is just plain silly. Okay, well maybe not silly, but given that my eyes are at half mast and I’m drifting as I write there is the question as to whether I am hitting diminishing returns here. Yes, I got the junk out of my bones as I stretched and released — with the added benefit of giving the cat a place to scratch as I attempted the right hand on my outstretched left foot pose (that’s the donuty looking one — great on the tape, ridiculous on me!).
The gripes aside — it being Wednesday after all when these sorts of doubts hit my consciousness — I got to thinking that it is still my little bit of quiet including all this baby-bitching. Yep, let’s face it, sometimes we need some time to complain. We need that arrrghhh growl. That “damn-it nobody changed the toilet paper” grumble. Or my favorite, the loud as I can be empty out the kitchen sink plate slamming session where the object is to make as much noise as possible with nary a scratch to any of the pots, pans, dishes or cutlery. Where I draw the line is with the mucked up sponge which in my world just gets tossed out with a few under the breath curses to the moron who left it there to soak in the overnight potpourri of bacteria languishing in their special stew.
The point is the moments that are yours don’t always have to be pretty. Let’s face it, why else would you want to hit things? Punching a heavy bag does have its attractions after all. As does beating down a huge mound of clay, digging in the dirt to plant bulbs or running till your heart feels as if it is going to burst. And that’s okay. Release is not always a slowly modulated intake and outtake of breath kind of thing. Sometimes its messy and full of rage, and sometimes its plain old complaint city when for the 116th time in a week you plead, cajole and beg one of your loved ones to pahleasssseee open the hamper lid before stacking their dirty laundry.
I’ll admit it, Yoga at 5:15 AM this morning felt cold and lonely. Sure it was 9 degrees outside which had a lot to do with it, and yes, the cat had fun torturing my feet as I was in the downward facing dog position, but it was something else too. I felt the sense of being in the middle without seeing the shoreline on either side. Not exactly being adrift, but feeling dislocated.
A million odd years ago I took at windjammer type cruise in the Caribbean. The trip was on an old Maine Schooner (built in the early 1900’s), with about 30 passengers and crew. The attraction to the voyage was that the trip was an actual crossing: starting out in St. Martin’s making our way to such islands as St. Barts, St. Kitts and Saba Island towards the final destination of St. Thomas. At one point on the trip, we were a sea with no land in sight. I would cast my eyes about all 360 degrees and watch the shimmering waters as they met the horizon, catching the phenomenon of differing weather systems interacting: here a sudden squall, there beams of sunlight pushing their way insistently through the gaps in the clouds.
It put me in mind of the months and years that sailors would ply the waters of the Atlantic, the Pacific and the Indian oceans in search of whale or spices or for sheer exploration. Not that a vacation tour or a stint in the dark can in any way equate, but yet we do find ourselves in the momentary panic of being adrift when in fact is we are on course. It’s just that we can’t quite see it yet. Yes the light *will* eventually peak up and over the horizon this morning, as surely as the vessel I traveled on made its way forward till we saw land, still, I needed to feel reassured and finding it have gone on to embrace the day — whenever it wakes up enough to show itself.
There was no way I wanted to get up out of bed — and when I finally managed it, the eyes that looked back at me from the bathroom mirror had bags, carry-ons and huge trunks. I truly didn’t know that eyes could look that puffy without having gone ten rounds.
Once I got to the living room to start morning yoga, it was all I could do to unroll the mat. I knew I needed something different or I’d fall right back to sleep so instead of following along with my usual yoga routine, Sara Ivanhoe’s Candlelight Yoga (available on Netflix), I went on Hulu and tried two of the Yoga Zone episodes, Gentle Yoga, Part 1 (if that’s gentle, oy…) and Strengthen and Tone, Part 1 (*lots* of leg stretches and downward facing dog poses).
Well, the fact that I’m writing means I survived, and I must say that doing the change-up really helped me to wake-up! It also reminds me that whether one is boxing or doing yoga, changing up the routine with other exercises not only gets the body going, but helps focus attention on muscles that may not get much of a work out otherwise.