Friday, April 10, 2009

Just be

As I left my chiro appointment back full of trigger points, Dr. K told me...I wanted nothing more than to relax into a session of yin yoga. I just wanted to relax into a pose, not thinking about how I should push into the stretch or how long to hold it, but just let myself be in the pose. As I haven't done yin yoga in months, I set my interval timer to two minutes per pose, so as not injure myself in a pose held too long. I also made sure to avoid certain poses like twists or cobra that I though could have stressed my back.


Afterwards I felt emotionally tender. Yin yoga can do that. Today, though, I feel great. My mind clear and intelligent, my emotions hopeful and positive, my back more at peace than it has been for days.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Working on it

I meant to go to meditation last night, I really did. The last couple of times I've gone the hard plastic chairs have irritated the trigger points in my back. Lying on the floor does the same thing. Obviously I should cultivate the ability to meditate sitting on a cushion, without a chair. But...not there yet.

I did, in fact, pack an armload+ of soft cushy pillows in the car, intending  to meditate resting against them, then leave them in the meditation room so I don't have to carry them in again.

But it didn't work out. I think Wednesday is just a bad back day for me. I do PT at the chiropractor's on Tuesday afternoons, and by the end of Wednesday I can be feeling tight and sore. At least that's how I was last night. I decided not to do anything that might aggravate my back further, and went home instead. I was disappointed, but I can certainly meditate at home where I will be more comfortable.

On the plus side of life, I have consistently been doing my morning pranayama practice for the past week, and I'm loving it! I am not a morning person by nature. It often takes me a while to get going in the mornings. But with just 15 minutes of energizing breathing before my morning shower, I feel awake and  clear-headed. I feel less need for caffeine to get going, and my energy level remains high for the first half of the day. That's a habit I really want to continue to make time for, if I can.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Making alterations

The pranayama class I gave two weeks ago seemed to go well enough. The new person who was there has come back to the weekly meditation classes (led by the usual teacher, not me) for the past two weeks. So at least I didn't scare her away! I still have a few nerves when I teach, though. It's not nervousness that I don't know what I'm talking about or what I'm doing - I definitely do. I think it's more that I'm a strong introvert, more used to listening than being the center of attention. Teaching takes a different kind of energy than I'm used to. I want to keep at it until it feels comfortable to me.

What's really not being comfortable for me right now, though, are the hard plastic deck chairs in the room where we meditate. My back is still very sensitive. When I meditate at home I sit on a soft cushy couch with multiple soft pillows behind my back. (I have been sitting on an exercise ball at work, which takes pressure off my back and helps a lot). Yesterday I took one of those big cushions with arms into the meditation room, set it against the wall, and sat on the floor with a pillow under my butt. I still couldn't get comfortable! I couldn't meditate. Lying on the floor isn't good, either. Anything hard against my back hurts.

I have one more idea. If I could bring some sort of soft cushion to lie on, I might be able to meditate on the floor in Savasana. I do have such a cushion, a twin matress topper, that just might work. As long as I can carry it tucked under one arm. I draw the line at carrying multiple armloads of cushions and pillows, as I end up just feeling silly. I can meditate perfectly well at home, though I do like meditating with other people, so I hope this works out for me.


My schedule has been a bit wonky the past couple of weeks, leading me to need to get to work a bit earlier. As a result, I have stopped my morning pranayama practice. I am not a morning person; I find it difficult to get going in the morning. The past couple of weeks it has been particularly difficult to get going. Well, this morning I did a bit of energizing pranayama, and what a difference it made! I hadn't realized how much my morning breathing practice was helping me to be awake and happy in the mornings until I stopped. It may make me an extra 15 minutes later to work in the mornings, but if I can afford it, that extra 15 minutes is really worth it.