I was sitting in Dr. H’s office today, waiting for my bi-annual check-up, which I have been dreading for about two months now when the urge to blog struck. Writing about today’s sucky practice and blaming my sucky practice on the vrittis associated with visiting Dr. H allowed me to separate myself from the experience of said vrittis.
I had a lot to say. I talked about the fact that the appointment up at Columbia forced me to drive into the city, which meant facing the usual, awful rush hour traffic and not getting my lovely, relaxing train ride. I talked about how all the traffic put me at YS with only an hour and a half left to practice with the Good Doctor. How all was good with Half Primary, but that I hated missing out on Supta K and resented having to do so in order to get my Second Series poses in. How if I had had a good Supta K, my horrifyingly awful Pasasana and my Kapotasana bail-out would not have smacked my ego around so badly.
How I felt vulnerable to begin with today, all raw around the edges, and then insult to injury, a fellow student tried and failed to get me into Pasasana until I turned to her and said, “Ok, that’s enough!” I told her it was not her, it was me. But then she told me that she had never assisted anyone in Pasasana before. So, maybe it was her, and not me. (All I needed was someone to stand behind me for balance and hook my waiting hands together. But she was doing all sorts of stuff that just didn’t make any sense at all. I should mention that she is the Pasasana Goddess…perfectly flat feet, perfectly gorgeous bind. So, I guess the GD thought that her talents in the pose would trump her inexperience as an adjuster.)
Anyway, this should have been a non-event. But because of my samskaras, and the loudly chattering vrittis, hurling insults at me, telling me that I suck and then I suck some more, this was pretty devastating to the rest of my practice.
Yeah, yeah, excuses, excuses. Sometimes a bad practice is just a bad practice. And if you take the GD’s advice, you just breathe. Feeling vulnerable? Breathe. Feeling scared? Breathe. Feeling angry? Breathe. Feeling flustered? Breathe. Breathe. Breathe. Listen to your breath. And breathe some more.
I remember, vaguely, dimly, the times when the thought of getting assisted in Supta K would color my entire practice. When getting an assist would feel like my collarbones were being crushed, or torn apart. When getting an assist would inevitably end in my cursing into my mat because once again I couln’t put my damn hands into a bind. I hadn’t learned to breathe yet in that pose.
I have not learned to breathe yet in Kapotasana, and my fears are only increasing.
I left for Columbia a defeated yogini. Ignoring the reality of impermanence, I told myself to get used to it becauses this is where my body is at.
And then I got a clean bill of health.
I didn’t jump for joy. It doesn’t happen that way. I am just relieved and a bit hung over from the stress.
But my body expresses its joy at another six month visit down, only a lifetime more to go, in its own unique way. My body stops the car in front of my gate, takes one look at the detritus of last year’s (maybe the last decade’s) leaves strewn all around the property that sits in front of our stockade fence, and grabs a rake to tackle the job. Six bags of leaves later, and a pile of boulders I plan to use to hardscape a rock garden, I crawled into a bath with epsom salts and Martha Stewart Living and stayed there for an hour.
And now, I try to recreate a blog post that was really nothing more than the ravings of a sad, angry, vulnerable, cancer survivor masquerading as an ashtangini. That blog post disappeared when Dr. H appeared to usher me into her office. And that blogger went back into hiding when Dr. H opened the door and set me free.
For approximately six months, I mean.