Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Joy

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Sunday afternoon's yoga class was just about as close to a complete disaster as they come. I felt queasy all day, but knew that I needed to at least try to go to yoga class to do some relaxation and breathing.

I got to class, still a little queasy, and sat down to do some meditation before we began. Even sitting there, I felt like I wanted to run away. I felt like I was going to throw up right there, on the mat. The music was too loud; the voices were too many; and I could not calm my mind, no matter what I did.

I got about ten minutes into the class, and knew right then and there that if I continued, I was going to start gagging, or worse, throwing up, right there in front of the entire class. Not very conducive to relaxation and rest. So I quietly gathered up my things (except for my ginormous yoga mat), and went back to the van where I promptly burst into tears and cried the entire way home.

It was just all so frustrating.

I went back to yoga class last night because, damn it, I'm stubborn, and I'm not about to let this thing beat me. I'm just not.

I felt fine when I got there, and it was a nice, small class. I got settled again and we began.

Five minutes in, my stomach started gurgling. Again.

No, damn it, I thought. NO.

I pushed through it, remembering that I hadn't actually gotten sick on Sunday - I had just cried and cried and cried.

So, since we were all there with our eyes closed, when I pushed back into child's pose and downward dog, I just let it go and started to cry, very quietly.

Someone watching me would have seen my abdomen and my shoulders shaking. They probably wouldn't have seen my face. But I just let it all go, let it all out.

After a few more minutes, I felt well enough to gain my composure when we started our standing poses. My stomach gurgled a little bit, but I kept repeating my intention to myself: I am strong in my own body. I am strong in my own body.

About forty minutes into class, Robin decided we should have some fun and showed us how to do King Dancer pose. It's a balancing pose that looks a lot like the picture I have on this blog, and when I saw her do it, I thought, geez, that's the pose they use in all those ads in Yoga Journal magazine. There's no way I can balance like that!

But, okay, I'm a good sport, and I decided to give it a go.

For some reason, I love the standing balancing poses. Tree pose is a favorite of mine - I can always seem to find my inner stillness when I do that one, grounding one leg into the floor while the other foot is tucked up inside my inner thigh. I've seen people weeble and wobble with that one, but I love it, and I do it daily when I need a few minutes of standing meditation.

So, okay, back to King Dancer. I followed Robin - stood straight, put my right hand out, grasped the top of my right foot behind me, lifted my left arm next to my ear, and pivoted ever so slightly forward...and...

I GOT it.

I mean, I REALLY got it.

I wobbled a bit at first, but then I realized it was almost exactly like Tree pose - it all has to do with balancing on that one leg, and letting the rest of yourself go.

As I extended my left arm and pivoted deeper, I felt something bubbling up inside me again - but this time, it was joy. I couldn't help but smile when I found that stability in my left leg, grounding it down through my foot and my toes and right straight down into the ground. I wanted to laugh out loud. I wanted to jump up and down and giggle and say, "Hey! I GOT it!"

Instead, I just smiled big, focused my eyes on one point in front of me, and kept working on grounding that left leg.

It was amazing.

Again, I wobbled a bit when we switched legs, but it was just so much FUN. I smiled again, grounding that right leg down through the floor as I relaxed my entire body and pivoted forward.

I LOVED it.

I felt so calm, so serene for the rest of the practice. Even in shavasana, when I couldn't seem to really calm my mind again, I was still repeating that intention: I am strong in my own body.

Driving home, I decided something: if I'm going to beat this thing, and I *am* going to beat this thing, I'm going to do it without the drugs. If I'm going to kick the whole nervous stomach thing and the anxiety and the feeling that I'm withering in my own body, I'm going to do it with yoga. As of today, there's no going back. If I'm going to do it, I do it now, or else I just give up and let myself get washed under.

Speaking of giving up...

It's been nearly ten days since I started that last necklace design. And I need to figure out a clasp. Onwards and upwards...

1 comment:

Melanie Cappiello said...

You know what Jen, there are days when I am getting needled at acupuncture and I feel that overwhelming release. It feels so scary. Like I want to hold it in, but then I feel sick. My acupuncturist is so great and helps me get through that release.

My therapist today asked if my doctor prescribed anti-anxiety meds for me. I told her that I didn't want them. Now for my husband, he needs them. We might not be married now without them. Whatever works for you, my friend!