Could it be the blankie?

April 30, 2006

It was one of those days when I just floated through practice, and it was just lovely! Something just was “right” today. I am wondering if it is a combination of my mindful eating and…get this…for the past two nights…I’ve been sleeping with…a blankie…

That’s right: a blankie.

I take a soft blanket and gather it up in my arms and fall asleep hugging it to my chest, the way a child hugs a bear (or in Adam’s case, a “Moomie”). I am not sure what precipitated this blankie thing. But I am pretty sure that there is an anatomical effect of holding onto something solid but soft while sleeping…my shoulders can’t collapse inward onto my chest. Thus, all night, my chest remains “open”, and I wake up refreshed, and that much closer to having the openness that I need for a nice, smooth practice!

YC


How to poison a child in 9 innings

April 29, 2006

Today was Little League for both of my boys. First, at 8 a.m., both Brian and Adam had games. Then Brian had a second game at ten. So, imagine my dismay when I arrived at Brian’s second game and saw a bright yellow sign posted prominently on the batter’s cage that said “CAUTION – Pesticide Application – KEEP OFF”. A photo of the sign is shown at left. Please take note of the children and dog pictured with a slash through them.

The sign was as clear as day that the field was OFF LIMITS until noon today.

My first instinct was to be angry at the city for violating the little league’s permit to use the field. But my anger quickly turned to confusion and concern: my child had just played NINE INNINGS on a dry dirt field that had been SPRAYED WITH POISON!!!??? Could this POSSIBLY BE TRUE???

In my moment of denial and confusion, I walked up to the Team Manager and was like, “Excuse me, but did you happen to see this sign?”

He was like, “Oh, yeah, that’s right. I noticed that. I was wondering about that. Hmmmm…” His voice trailed off. Amiable enough guy. But JEEZ.

Next, I found Brian and The Husband practicing throws in the poison dirt, and said, “Did Brian play on this field?”

I already knew that the answer was yes.

“Do you slide into base?” I asked Brian.

I already knew that the answer was yes.

“Did they wash their hands before eating their snacks?” I demanded of The Husband.

Why did I bother to even ask?

This is disturbing on so many levels:

  • New York City’s UTTER DISREGARD of our little league’s playing permit.
  • The Team Manager’s poor judgement in allowing the children to play on POISONED DIRT! (And consider this: each team has, not one, but TWO Team Managers! So, with two teams playing at 8 a.m., that makes four team managers that ignored the unambiguous warning sign!).
  • The parents’ poor judgment in allowing the game(s) to go forward.

And now, my OWN poor judgement in not dragging Brian home with me. As I write this, he is playing Poison Baseball, as his father watches, his father, who told me to stop going after the Team Manager like a pit bull. I guess I was embarassing him. Bitchy wife. Crazy mother.

May I scream now? ARGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!

YC

P.S. I lodged a complaint with the City’s “Citizen Service Center”, with the Little League and with Asa Aarons. Now I am so tired, I just want to go to sleep. Anger is exhausting.

Update: I have since calmed down. Showered my kids, took a long hot bath and then I felt moved to put myself into all four of the Marichyasanas. Happily, my binds were strong in every one of them. This helps me immensely because it tells me that I still have these postures – that they are not lost. They may be hiding during practice. But hiding is much better than gone.

YC


Only speak the truth that is sweet…

April 29, 2006

said SKPJ in Yoga Mala (I may not have gotten the quote exactly right; hence, no quotation marks).

Thus, I have nothing much to say about practice today other than that it went from awesomely good to horrendously bad somewhere between Marichyasana C and the moment that I began to obsess about another student’s practice (whatever it is that you are thinking, it’s probably the other thing). I became so distracted that I literally sat on my mat and watched her, all the while, churning up thought-sludge from the bottommost depths of my mind. These thoughts were not loving, not accepting, not kind. And I did nothing to corral them. I let them run rampant as if I had no choice but to let them do so. It was as if I was driving my car through a driving storm and forgot to put on my windshield wipers. At some point, I realized that I had brought my vehicle to a full-stop. And that was when I went back to Marichyasana D, approximating that that was where the storm began to brew, figuring that perhaps I could go back to where I had lost my way and go from there. But that didn’t work; time had run short, and I resigned myself to the fact that I just had to let it go. I sat in lotus and told myself, “This was today’s practice, nothing more and nothing less than what it was. Next time, let it be different.”

It’s funny because physically, my practice was perfectly fine. And yet nothing felt fine about it once I let my mind swirl.

YC


Three Immutable Truths about Being a Dogwalker

April 27, 2006

(to be taken with the grain of salt deserved by the fact that the writer of these immutable truths has spent approximately four hours of her life as a “Professional Streetwalker”).

1. Apparently, dogwalkers are the very low on the domestic service-provider food chain. If you arrive at an attended building to walk a dog, you are treated by the doorman/super/porter like a convicted felon who has arrived to rob the residents at gunpoint.

2. Corallary to Immutable Dogwalker Truth Number 1: While doormen will tolerate dogs that live in the building, and may even tolerate dogs who are guests of residents of the building, dogs that arrive with dogwalkers are canis non-grata. I am guessing that this is due to their mere association with the ersona non-grata that is the dogwalker.

3. Aside from the hostility of doormen and superintendents, dog walking is sweet and peaceful and rewarding.

Off to meet Boodiba and perhaps some shala-mates for some righteous vittles.

YC


My practice today was like a really great first date…

April 26, 2006

So good, so so good, that to talk about it would be, per chance, to jinx it. So, I’ll leave it at this: something is very right about a diet high in fruits and green stuff.

On other fronts, I was outed today by an Ashtanga mate, for better or for worse…thus, perhaps you are reading Yoga Chickie for the first time. If so, it won’t always be like this – usually, I can spend 1 thousand words or so obsessing over every posture, every bind. Usually I whine a lot about one of the Mari’s, usually not B, often A or D. And I am counting my adjusted Supta Kurmasanas: I think it is at 8 or 9 today. But that’s all I’m gonna say. Okay, maybe that’s not all I’m gonna say. I do want to say that Xtina rocks, I mean really really, and hello Jose! You rock too. And I miss Sir. Yes Sir, I miss Sir. Please come back soon. Friday? Probably not. But Sunday then. Okay?

And now, onto some other random stuff, just to fill the ether with something, anything (!) since I am not filling it with obsessive compulsive yoga talk:

  • Sean Preston on Britney’s Second Pregnancy: “Finally! Someone else my mom can drop on his head”…I saw in Susan’s blog that Brit is pregnant again. Then I confirmed it via Google. Scary. You need a license to get married (and if you’re gay, you can’t even get that license), to drive (and if you make too many mistakes, you get your license revoked), to serve liquor in a restaurant, to dance in a bar, to give a manicure, to cut someone’s hair, for pete’s sake. But there’s precious nothing to keep Britney Spears from popping out as many Federspawn as the wishes.
  • Let’s see…we’ve got lithe, long-haired women, scantily clad, posing in their undies, working with balls, rings and other props…Is it a “Yoga Journal” Photo Shoot? OR could it be … a Hanes Commercial?…Has anyone seen the Hanes commercial with the dancers from the Momix troupe doing yoga in their underwear? It is awesomely cool. If you haven’t seen it, click here and look for the“Women’s ComfortSoft video”
  • Distorted Body Image Defined. Keira Knightley is not fat. She is not double the size of anyone, except maybe the “anorexic” Olson twin (as if anyone could tell the difference between the anorexic one and the “merely ridiculously skinny” one) or this Top Model. Yet she claims to be “twice the size” of every other girl she sees at auditions. This is Keira; the photo was part of the “Thinspiration” section of an anorexic teenager’s “pro-ana” website.
  • NOT minimally invasive breast cancer treatment, thank you very much: After 9 months of cancer treatment, none of which was defended as “minimally invasive” (as in Cheryl “I had a little breast cancer but they cut it all out and it was no big deal” Crow), Kylie Minogue (thanks Vanessa for pointing out the typo!) steps out with her rocking chemo-sprouts hair. Here is a photo of Kylie Before (before breast cancer). And here is a photo of Kylie After (after breast cancer). I think she looks WAY better now. Sometimes you can look back at photos of someone long before they are diagnosed with breast cancer and compare them to photos of the same person after they are all done with their treatment, with their hair and eyelashes growing back, and you realize that something was not quite right before, even though it only became clear in hindsight. For me, the photos of me at my sister’s wedding in July of 2002 horrify The Husband. He can’t stand looking at them, made me banish them. I look at them now and realize he is right. I just looked, somehow, off. And I was. The camera doesn’t lie. Although sometimes it can be coaxed into tel.ling a fib.

I hope Lost is a new episode tonight! I hope the sun stays out! I hope I can take another day of Green Power, a/k/a the “Joint-Freeing Fast”. Or at least that’s what I’m calling it.

Bye Petri…have a wonderful world tour…thanks and Namaste…

YC


Cleanse Day 1 (of 1?)

April 25, 2006

Practice was slightly better today, although something is seriously amiss in my twisting. I can’t blame it all on my shoulders. My spine just is not making that extra little movement that I need it to make. And my backbends are also pretty sad. I think I squeezed out seven or so today anyway, hoping that ONE just ONE would feel okay. It was not to be.

Nevertheless, I will say that it was an improvement over yesterday. Supta K number…? I forget…8? 9? No progress. Jose tells me the progress is too gradual to note. And he assures me that Petri is pressing my chest down even though I don’t feel it. I feel as if all I need is someone to take my ankles and crank them up behind my neck. THEN I could bind. Until my ankles are back there, there is just no way that there is going to be room for me to bind my arms around my (sudden realization:) ginormous thighs. Or so it seems.

Xtina is so so so so so awesome. She knows exactly what I need – partly because I told her, but she listened, and she remembered. I told her that I really want my knee behind my armpit in Mari A and B because that feels like it mimics the energy in Supta K. She has been helping me with that, and today she helped me to get that going in Mari C as well. Still, the twist is not quite deep enough for some reason this week, so it is really hard to really close the gap between armpit and knee in Mari C and Mari D.

Shouldn’t I find the positive in my practice, amid the whining? Shouldn’t I recognize that my Uttitha Hasta Padangusthasana is really quite smooth and light and lovely? No dancing at all. Shouldn’t I recognize that Purvotanasana is no longer painful and out of whack? Shouldn’t I be happy that I can jump straight into Tirianga Mukha Pada and Janu Sirsa B? I should be happy that I can JUST about lotus my left leg without my hands (after getting my right leg lotused up – I can’t seem to slide it high enough into my hip crease without using my hands)? There is so much to feel good about my practice.

I feel sometimes as if I am letting myself get sucked onto some sort of Ashtanga Dark Side when I piss and moan about these postures, which by anyone’s standards (except perhaps an Ashtangi) are quite complicated and advanced. It is a miracle that I can complete roughly 50 chatturangas in a practice and not be collapsing on the floor. It is a miracle that I can even DO Mari C and D, however badly. I need to pull back from the Dark Side (I believe it is called Egoville) before it really sucks me in and spits me back into a vinyasa class, or worse….Bikram.

Oh yeah, the cleanse, almost forgot. Five cups of Green Power so far, and I am feeling full and full of energy. Not only did I practice but I did 2 1/2 hours of dog walking (I am Toni Collette in In Her Shoes!) and walked my own dog for 45 minutes. And I feel great. I think I might have some butternut squash at dinnertime, maybe, possibly. Or maybe I will just keep drinking this stuff. But my instincts tell me to go with the squash and possibly some protein powder in the Green Power.

I would like to try a homemade cleanse -with juices that I press myself. But for now, as I experiment with my first cleanse, it feels less daunting to use the premade stuff.

YC


I think I need a cleanse…

April 25, 2006

I’m thinking about a juice fast. But I don’t know much about it. I brought home some Naked – Green Machine this evening, and it’s all fruit plus a bunch of green stuff – spirulina, clorella, green tea extract, weat grass, blue green algae, etc..). I think I could probably manage a day on this stuff – I’ve certainly gone longer on less (like when I had to prepare for a colonoscopy….).

Susan, if you’re reading me…can I do this? I need a pep talk. I want to feel better than I feel now. I want to stop hearing my joints talking to me all the time. I want to feel like there’s nothing sitting there festering in my intestines…

Can I do this?

YC