So said Sir. This morning. At the shala! Bright and early, in time for the mantra, I was.
And yes, he was referring to Supta Kurmasana.
As I was driving down to Shala X this morning, I asked myself, as I often do, “What are my intentions for my practice today?” My mind’s first response was “Gotta bind in Supta K. Must bind in Supta K. That is my intention.” Usually, the next step is for me to tell myself to have the intention but to let go of the results. Passion and discipline tempered with non-attachment. But today, I dared not even have that particular intention. I decided that my intention would be to simply do my practice with a minimum of breaks in flow. I set the intention, and then I let go of the results.
I arrived just in time for the mantra. Sir was welcoming, asking me when my surgery was, which meant that he had remembered the email I had sent him about my vacation and surgery plans (i.e., why I would not be in the shala much until September and then after September). And that helped. It’s kind of nerve-wracking coming back after a six-week absence. Mantra began. Practice began. Many new faces. A few familiar faces. Mostly, I kept my eyes on my driste, except at one point as I watched an incredibly bendy student set herself up for Supta K. I noticed that her arms were reaching BACK the entire time, instead of straight out to the sides, as mine usually are in Kurmasana. I made a mental note to try that method, myself, later on when it was time to do the turtle.
Practice was mainly uneventful, save for my newly having to get re-used to sweating like a teenage boy dancing with his crush at his first school dance. That did make for a couple of continuity breaks, as I ran for the bathroom to get some tissues since even my beach towel was sopping wet by the time I got to Mari B. Nevertheless, as I said, uneventful.
Reach. Balance. Twist. Jump. Bend. Bind. It was all happening.
And then there was the Turtle. The moment of truth. The place where the rubber hits the road.
I rolled up my capri-length pants into shorts-length and I pulled my tank top up to reveal my abdomen. If I was going to be covered in flop-sweat, then at least I was going to make the most of it.
OK, I thought, just jump your legs around your arms….now walk your feet a little closer together and press your chest forward towards the mat….okay, now let your arms slide back along your sides as you lower your butt to the floor….try to keep your feet grounding as you sit…oh!…lost contact between feet and mat…okay, no problem, just let the heels slide forward now……now bring the arms slightly away from your sides but try to keep the shoulders under the legs…..
Sir made his way over just as I sunk into Kurmasana. He held my back down a bit, but mainly, I’m good to go in that posture. For some weird reason, it’s always been cake for me. My heels float, even my butt floats…so, it’s like my entire lower body is balancing on top of my upper body.
And then it was time for Supta K. But even before Sir started to pretzel me up, I could feel that my arms were reaching further across my back than they had in the past. I could feel that my arms were reaching higher above my hips and closer to the smallest part of my back, my waist, for a more efficient bind. And then there it was:
TWO HANDS FOUND EACH OTHER. HANDS. Not fingers. HANDS. Goddamned sweat made it really hard to hold on, but I also know that when I am even looser, the sweat won’t matter as much. Sir switched the hand-to-hand grip for hand-to-belt when he crossed my legs over my head. I know I have made progress. That’s what I really needed to know. That progress was possible. My hard work has paid off. All may be coming.
And afterwards, I did some really sweet backbending and then I did my own drop backs and stand ups. And it was good to be back at the shala. It was good to say hi to my shala friends. It was good to chat with the Gorgeous Preternaturally Youthful Mom.
And now, because I have nothing else to say other than I might have Lyme Disease thanks to my outdoor adventures in either Fire Island, Canada, Vermont, Lake Placid or Eco-Hampton, but it’s cool because I am already on anti-biotics and feeling like a new chickie, I will do what has always been inevitable, what has always been merely a matter of time. I won’t be the first. That was accomplished already this week. And I hope I won’t be the last. What is it that I am talking about? I am talking about parodying a yoga blog, perhaps pretending to somehow be above it all and yet still somehow deeply involved with it all, perhaps using big big words that even I don’t understand, perhaps using the word “cock” in the middle of a word for no apparent reason, like the way Mr. Big said “Abso-fuckin-lutely” in the final scene of the very first episode of Sex and the City. Or I could try. But it would be difficult because the yoga blog of which I am thinking of parodying is really quite funny in quite a masculine way, in a way that I could never be, without risking sounding obscene or perverse and losing my “one or two readers”, which include my seventh grade homeroom teacher and my ex-boyfriend’s second wife’s personal shopper. Maybe instead, I should just work, “See you next Tuesday” into my text and see who notices. See who even cares. The answer to which will probably be no one, seeing as I have (cleverly)embedded this text in a post that addresses Supta Kurmasana and Lyme Disease, two far more compelling topics than the internal debate of whether or not to engage in the sometimes hilarious and sometimes buzz-killing art of skewering a yoga blog, and by art, I mean, it takes talent and guts, neither of which I believe I posesses in sufficient quantities.