JUST A NUMBER

I turn 40 in a couple of weeks & to celebrate am traveling to Spain at the end of June.  I’m not one of those people who dislikes getting older.  I found sobriety at 31 & ever since then, my life gets better & better.  I was a pretty unhappy lady in my 20’s (which I spent a fair amount of time in rehab), so there’s no wishing to go back for me, only forward.  I do however stroke into a big cringe upon remembering what it was like sometimes.  As it says in the “promises” portion of the Big Big on page 83:

We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it.

I’m not there yet.  I’m good with the door to my past staying cemented shut UNLESS it will help someone else.  Maybe I’ll get to a better place with the cringe worthiness of what happened, but for now I will be consoled that at least if I share in a meeting or with a newcomer the mess I was compared to what I am now, it will give them hope.

I did steps 3 & 4 this past month.  Our sponsorship group had to compress them because none of us could meet last month.  I had never realized before how well the two steps intertwine.  If I manage to trust my HP fully I will turn all of my resentments over faster.  If I turn them over faster with more willingness my pain decreases leaps & bounds.  Step 4 is all about the work for me, the writing out of grievances.  I dislike the thinking about doing it, but I start to feel relief & am delivered of resentments right when I start writing about them.  It is both an Ahhhh & Duh moment.

I’ll meet with my sponsor next month to tell her all about my resentments, big & small.  When you do the work in the steps in AA life only gets better.  When we meet we’ll talk strategy about resentment patterns (most of them don’t change at least with me).  She’ll thankfully offer solutions that I’d never think of.  My HP will work through her.  I’m excited because I’m doing a little extra work on a subject I really have a hard time with.  I feel ready.  Well to be honest, I actually feel scared, stubborn, AND ready about it.  So we’ll see where it actually goes.  It takes what it takes.  I heard someone say in a meeting, time takes time.  I thought I’d heard all the sayings but I had never really heard that one before.  Works for spiritual growth so well.

We went to the Gilbert House in Salem a couple months ago, pics below.  We have to get very creative with stuff to do with all of this rain!  This rain lover is so ready for a big block of sunshine.

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My newest set of gentle yoga classes that I recently started teaching are going really well.  A year ago if someone would have asked me to sub a gentle class I would have either said no or panicked.  It feels really good to have done the hard work of sequencing, trial & error, asking for help (from teachers & students), & just showing up.  Now I am experiencing an ease with teaching the class although I’m not 100% comfortable.  Today I taught a free mini class & noticed that many of the people seemed more of the gentle variety & it felt pretty damn good to give them what they needed instead of only teaching whats in my comfort zone.

H & I are in a good spot, I feel comfortable turning 40, I’m looking forward to bright sunshine & Spain, yoga teaching is going really well, I’m in a really good place.  Oh yeah & I celebrated 9 years sober.  I can’t believe I remembered to mention this until the end of the post, but for me sobriety is a miracle each day although I do love to gather a couple of chips & speak at some meetings.  I’m just really, really grateful today for my whole life.  I don’t think I could say the same if I would have kept drinking for the last 9 years.

Wishing all of you & the world a sense of ease & forgiveness with your own pasts no matter how old you all are.

~Namaste.

 

 

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DIFFERENCES OF OPINION

It has become evident that a reduced yoga class load (center where I teach has been closed for 3 weeks) has renewed my own yoga practice.  I’ve been doing yoga on my own (with help of the internet) almost every day.  I’ve found some particularly challenging sequences that have led me to see inversions differently & have renewed my effort with them.

So much so that a couple days ago I kicked a hole in the wall.  Oops.

I was attempting to press up from a wide legged fold into a half head stand (just barely putting pressure on the head for more balance) half shoulder stand.  Something always goes wrong once my legs are all the way up & I lost control.  My heel plunged into the dry wall.

I don’t wait days, weeks, or month to tell the truth anymore.  Telling the truth after a week & coming clean to my sponsor used to be major progress.  For the most part I can be prompt.  I waited till after dinner.  Thank goodness for AA!  It taught me how to have better timing & how not to make everything about me!

Me to my step dad:  So you know how you just filled in the holes & patched up the wall where those light fixtures used to be?

SD:  Nervously replies, Yes…?

Me:  While getting a weird smile/very unpoker type of look on my face, Was it hard?

SD:  Getting wise to the situation now, No, why???

Me:  Explaining current obsession with inversions to two blank faced parents & concluding with, So I kicked a hole in the wall...

They were completely cool about it.  The hole will be repaired eventually, it’s a funny story, & also let’s me know that I should maybe chill the eff out with the handstanding/headstanding/shoulderstanding stuff.

Learn new ways, go slower, scale back a bit.

BALANCE THAT STUFF OUT, right?

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Thinking about kicking up one more time…?

 

My heart was heavy the day after election day.  That statement alone tells you most of what you need to know about my voting preferences, right?  I feel like I am on one side speaking a different language than the other side.  It’s maddening.  I am so sad for so many different reasons.  I cried.  I took a break from Facebook, I had to.  Thoughts still spilled onto my Instagram feed, a public account where I mostly just follow yogis.  Some ranted.  Some said don’t pay any attention.  Some said there’s no point in getting sad.  I had friends cut me off mid-sentence.  I felt very alone.

So strange to get so affected by a election!  New experience for me.  I have always voted Democrat since right before I got sober.  Obama came into office the same year as my sobriety date.  The Big Book (AA’s main piece of literature) speaks of SECURITY as being one thing that really fries our character defects.  I don’t feel secure so I get fearful.  I get fearful so I act out.  When I act out a whole bunch of unnecessary drama unfolds.  This election really brought that up for me.  I freakin love Obama.  He makes me feel safe.

& what’s so obviously polarizing is that he’s not everyone’s cup of tea.  People dislike him.  I have family members & many friends that think very differently from me.  I have had to really let that sink in.  Some of the fundamental beliefs I have aren’t shared by so many other people.  Wouldn’t be scary if we were talking about liking croissants instead of donuts.  We’re talking about way bigger & more important issues.

& I love these people.  There’s the rub.  They are filled with value.  They are good.  I have spent time with them.  I know their hearts.  WE JUST HAVE DIFFERENCES IN OPINION.  There’s much more I could say about the election here, but I question if it’s helpful.

The Big Book says:

The grouch and the brainstorm were not for us. They may be the dubious luxury of normal men, but for alcoholics these things are poison.  Page 66

&

Acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. When I am disturbed, it is because I find some person, place, thing, or situation – some fact of my life – unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person, place, thing, or situation as being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment. Nothing, absolutely nothing, happens in God’s world by mistake.  Page 417

So I’m going to frost AA all over my life like I usually try to do.  I’m not going to try to figure shit out.  I’m going to agree to disagree with those that think/feel differently than me.

I’m going to show respect.

I’m grateful that I feel happy, joyous, & free just for today.  I have yet another yoga audition manana, yikes!  I was telling my parents how I’ve never gotten a gig from an audition, that really stings!  But I’m glad for where I’ve taught this past year, it’s been right where I needed to be.

Ah, wishing/sending so much love out to you all & the whole earth this holiday season.  That those that feel lack will feel very full.

Xo & ~Namaste.

 

GRACE OR GRIND

Little guy & I took a quick road trip to the ocean a couple of weeks ago.  I had been planning on hitting the Oregon Coast Aquarium in Newport later during our June trip, but I got crazy cabin fever suddenly so we just took off.  I grabbed toothbrushes & pajamas for him just in case.  He was more into the digger outside than the actual aquarium.  We left after I got tired of saying, Look at the fish, over & over again.  He knows what he’s into & I have to respect that.

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JUST POINT ME TOWARDS THE DIGGERS.

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And to his amazement the city of Newport happened to be doing some construction at the foot of the hotel we were staying at (you may be able to barely make out the construction site in the picture right below).  Who needs to look at the ocean when there are excavators to view???

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Staying beach side is the way to go, especially if one is in care of a toddler.  Much easier than getting in the car & schlepping to the beach.  The next day we drove North through Tillamook to Rockaway Beach, destination of a train ride we will take in a couple of weeks.  Train station below, yes he was all over it.

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I AM CURRENTLY OBSESSED WITH ANYTHING THAT HAS A STEERING WHEEL.

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ROCKAWAY BEACH

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I WILL CLUTCH CARS, TRAINS, & TRUCKS ON EVERY OCCASION TO BE STRIPPED FROM ME ONLY WHEN I SLEEP!

The weather on the drive up the coast was mystical, sunny perfect weather, I felt like I was in the center of a perfect blue diamond looking out.  I canceled our hotel for the June trip & booked a camping spot walking distance to the beach.  I’m looking forward to it, but also placed an order for a portable dvd player, Curious George on my side to help in a pinch or while I build a fire.

I believe that both AA & yoga are a sort of oral tradition.  You can read about both, you can YouTube yoga videos, but most of the stuff said in meetings & in yoga class is parroted by people who heard it from their friends & sponsors who heard it from their friends & sponsors all the way back & up (& new stuff made up along the way!).  I’ve heard so many good things in meetings that have blown me away.  Those tools that come in handy at the tightest of moments.  I also hear amazing cues in class.  Last week:  Rest your right footprint down on the mat.  Footprint.  Ah, I loved that cue.  Anyone hearing that cue would get it.

Back in Long Beach a woman said her sponsor told her, grace or grind.  You can be led to do the right thing the hard way or the easy way, it’s your choice.  True, many times I bumble around wondering, why is this so hard?  Until I get it.  Other times I know the right thing & I choose the wrong thing on purpose.  I suffer.  I pick back up & start over again.  H is at an age where he knows what he wants (diggers, mama not fish), but many times I find myself pointing at another child saying, see how much fun she has swimming?  Don’t you want to swim like her?  Finding myself forcing him into situations he’s not into.  I’m grateful for the awareness of this.

Grace or grind.

Doesn’t he have his whole life ahead of him to embrace swimming & fish?  Grace comes when I let him choose his own path.  I’m sure I will have moments still of trying to engage him in an unwanted task, isn’t that one of the golden burdens of parenthood?  Wanting your children to experience life & sometimes forgetting to just let them be.

Life is good today.  I’ve subbed for other teachers in the past week & have other classes lined up to sub this Summer.  The first Free Yoga on the Green was today, woo-hoo a bunch of people showed up!  I love being able to facilitate a outdoor space to practice yoga!  That was such a big part of my practice, I hope many people can find the peace I found in it.  I’m grateful for AA & the years I have spent being sober one day at a time.  I would have no good thing in my life if for that.

Wishing/vibing graceful actions & thoughts to you all out there.

Xo & Namaste~

 

I AM ENOUGH, I HAVE ENOUGH

I had forgotten last post to write about how I have been randomly (and not so randomly) gifted three pairs of yoga pants!  One kind of ‘silly’ thing I let go of in 2015 was an old black pair that fit me just right until they didn’t any more.  I had been sewing all the holes in them for a while.  When my friend came to visit a couple weeks ago (she reads the blog and saw my post about the pants) she brought me a brand new Lululemon pair which I have since only taken off after sternly reminding myself that they will last way longer if I only wear them to yoga.  The are soft.  They are comfy.  They fit perfectly.  And my other yoga buddy gifted me two pairs she had outgrown, one I am wearing below.  Thanks friends & Universe!

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NEW PURPLE PAIR ABOVE.

In other news, we have all been S I C K (we are now all better).  Sickness is the worst as a mom because you do that instant mental scramble of wondering if it’s worth it to go to a place where you know people are sick (which is always pretty good odds!), or who will take care of your kid if your normal babysitters are unable to.  I don’t want to be shut in all day because I’m scared of getting sick and then I hate being shut in all day because we are sick.  I definitely fail when it comes to slowing down for a while.  I refuse basically to slow down.  But when your kid ONLY wants to lay on you 24/7 what other choice do you have?  We were pretty much camped out on the couch for DAYS:

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WE EAT HERE.  WE SLEEP HERE.

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TEA & CARTOONS.

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SICK:  THIS IS ALL WE DID ALL…DAY…LONG…

I broke down one day with my mom and cried.  I still have such a hard time when things come out sideways.  I don’t like crying.  I don’t like not having it all together.  I’m not only dealing with complete inactivity, I thought, but now my desire for perfectionism is rearing it’s ugly head!  I was grateful to meet with my sponsor the next day and unravel to her.  Seasons, times, set-backs, up hill, down hill, it’s all tiny, medium, or large chunks of life we reside in.  How I choose to deal with life varies.  I know it helps if I live just one day at a time.  I got better, I went back to meetings.  Some people came up to talk me after the last meeting I went to.  I thought, am I in Long Beach?  It felt good.  I felt a part of.  I leave meetings early sometimes so I can put H to bed.  I received texts and calls, are you okay?  I saw you leave the meeting early.

And H and I were able to start taking our walks again.  Just taking a short walk really resets our day:

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STICKS!  I LOVE STICKS!

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EVERY TIME:  DUMP POPCORN ON HEAD.  WEAR CONTAINER AS HAT.  SCATTER POPCORN WILLY NILLY.

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SOME AFTER HOURS POSING AT THE WOODBURN AQUATIC CENTER.

I’ve come up with a new mantra for now:

I’m enough.

I have enough.

It’s been giving me a lot of peace.  Take it if you need it.

Yoga is awesome!  People come to my classes!  I am a yoga teacher!  I love it.  I am grateful for it.

Oh yeah, and I got on the sub list at Escape to Yoga in Sherwood, OR!  Woo-hoo!  I’m so excited to teach there and be a part of that studio!  I’m already signed up for some March dates.  Very exciting, a lot of work I put in, and now it feels goooooood.

Sending out peaceful vibes to you all.

~Namaste.

YOGA, PARTY OF ONE

I’ve done lots of things alone in life.  Most haven’t bothered me, like I have seldom thought, having someone with me would make this so much better.  I’ve been single for years.  I’ve lived alone and enjoyed it.  I’ve gone to my fair share of movies alone.  I’ve sat at plenty of meetings alone, apart from different cliques (yes, there are even cliques in AA!), on the outside looking in, and kind of liking it most of the time.  I’m a loner and I isolate by nature so you could say this comes easy to me.  Well, folks if I know one thing yoga teaching wise, teaching all by yourself doesn’t work!  You need people in order to teach.  Double duh, right?  (And please read the end of this post to see what I really believe about being alone).

The last three weeks I have been flying solo at my recent yoga gigs.  Sadly, the studio in Milwaukie (east from Portland, OR) closed.  The same week it closed I got a new yoga gig at a swimming center that has a yoga studio about 20 minutes south of Wilsonville.  Great timing and totally my Higher Power I know, but my first three classes were empty.  After researching this strange phenomenon (being sarcastic there) I learned that it’s pretty common for a new yoga teacher with new yoga classes to have slim to none attendance.

Strangely enough I do believe I have made progress on not having the sing-songy voice while teaching.  I started building my sequences around a theme, more alignment oriented than philosophical.  When I speak from the place of the theme the sing-song voice vanishes.  When I say something a bit more rote like, lift your straight right leg into the air, the sing-song is back.  So if I’m passionate and interested in teaching about a theme I speak in a natural voice!  Yay!  I’m not worrying about the voice during the rest of the time (for now), I’m just going to trust that it takes care of itself.

And, yay some people showed the last two days of my first week at the aquatic center.  About a third were my Oregon friends, I am so thankful for them.  It felt so good to teach.  It also feels really good to have an emerging stronger sense of confidence with my teaching style.

A friend posted this picture on her FB feed last week and I though it was appropriate:

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Besides, we have stopped fighting anybody or anything. We
have to!

~BB page 103

 

And pictures of our basic early December lives:

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I will sweep.

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Christmas wonder.

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It’s always a good day when you make cookies:

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Pre assembling a new chair from nana & papa:

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The truth is that I don’t just need people to teach yoga classes to.  I need people period.  This has been a huge struggle for me since I got sober.  I was experiencing some stress one day last week and I left to Target to go get some things we needed.  I thought about how I needed to get back to relieve my step-dad.  I sat down in the eating area and called my sponsor instead.  I felt so much better, like I had let go of huge weights I had been stubbornly pushing along.  I have been not been feeling a part of again here in Oregon AA.  I’m praying about it.  I know the solution lies first in my Higher Power and then second in action I will need to take.  Isolation leads to drink.  This is a fact for me.

I’ve experience many moments in the last weeks when I have asked myself, what am I doing?  I’m not sure if the yoga deal will pan out.  I know that I do love doing it.  I’m nearing my one year anniversary of blogging and yoga is what sparked this blog.  But is it enough, I wonder.  I’m going to just keep showing up.  I’m also looking forward to the rest of December and spending lots of time with loved relatives I don’t get to see that often.

I hope everyone out there can get closer to doing something career-wise that they kind of like or even (gasp) love.

I wish a bunch of Christmas love for you and your families.

~Namaste

 

ROAD TRIP

My master teacher in training used to say that the opposite of love is fear. I had presumed it before that to be hate, but I now agree that hate springs from fear.  My prayers for the upset and bloodshed in France and all over the whole world, those unknown hot pockets of darkness, is that those responsible for the violence (past and future) will have love instead of fear manifest.   There is a lot of noise about the issue all over T.V. and social media.  I’m choosing to ignore most of it and just pray.

We drove up to Mosier, OR last week to check out the digs my cousin rented for Christmas.  Minuscule town that packs a big view.

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After seeing the town we flitted through Hood River.  Since there wasn’t a chain grocery store in Mosier, we wanted to see what stores were in Hood River.  My cousin’s partner is a chef and she wanted me to report about fresh ingredients.  Then onto Troutdale to check out McMenamins Edgefield.  Whoa, have you been there?  It’s amazing.  A long, snake-like HOT soaking pool, restaurants, gardens, orchards, a little golf course, a movie theater, and a ton of quirk.  Everything is painted.  By everything, I mean just about everything. Electrical outlets, sides of barns no one really walks by.  Little mini murals everywhere. You have to just go there to understand I think.  The pictures are full of strange humor, reminds me to not take myself too seriously.  I didn’t like any pictures of the paintings except the balls on the railings and this door:

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I always feel like many forms of art and painted stuff has to be seen in person to feel the full amount of beauty.  H was only too grateful to get out of the car and run around.

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And back home to help papa out with the gravel:

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H is teething four teeth, is super snotty (teething or cold, we aren’t sure), and is very fussy/needy too.  I always have moments where I feel like a bad mom because then I feel fussy/needy, ha.  I have to remind myself about all of the good mom stuff I do when he is so fractious.  We spent some time before nap time balancing a hair tie on his big toe.  I am always amazed by what he thinks is funny.  Then I read a bunch of books to him before his nap.  It’s been nice too to have this little gig in Milwaukie to go teach at to take some time for myself.  And meetings.  When we were at the McMenamins I noticed the martinis.  I have never been one to say that the craving for alcohol has completely left me.  I don’t think about it every day at all, and huge chunks of time pass where I am not conscious of it.  But it’s still there and I always have to play the tape.  Playing the tape has always been a big save for me.  I will do a bunch of things I will regret.  Those little things are reminders to me of why it’s better for me and everyone that I don’t drink.

I’ve been living more in the moment lately too which have grown from some new discoveries.  At my last teaching session during the end meditation I had a flash of prayer, like my whole soul was asking my HP for help with my future and this yoga stuff.  I haven’t been doing that.  My funds are running low and I’ve been stressing out a lot.  A huge character defect of mine is trying to hash stuff out myself instead of relying on my HP.  I did some writing for a step study I’m in.  We’re on step 11 on prayer and meditation.  I wrote:  I am afraid that my HP can’t help me or won’t help me.  I’m afraid my HP won’t do anything.  That my HP is impotent and doesn’t care about me.

I was very surprised to see that.  These are old beliefs that I had thought I had gotten over.  So, it gave me some clarity.  It made me remember that I have a new HP.  It made me see that I may have to refine my vision of my HP more.  And I will pray.  I will focus on praying more.  Instead of always trying to steam roll my way through stuff.

Whew!  I’m so grateful for the steps, HP, the program, my family, my son!  I’m so grateful for all I have!  I don’t really need for anything.

I hope all of your needs (and some of your wants?) get met today as well.

Xo & namaste~

THE RAW TRUTH & A JOB

I’ve chaired two meetings in the last week.  I signed up for one because I was approaching 7 and a half years and the other because the secretary kept passing around the sign up sheet and there were a lot of gaps.  Noticing when I have another half year of sobriety under my belt is just as important to me to acknowledge when I have another year.  And leading/chairing meetings always puts me smack dab in the center of things.  Sharing itself always softens my heart and makes me way less judgmental when listening to other people share.  Also, I noticed a while back that when I get called on to share I stare directly at the leader almost the whole time.  Chances are if you lead a meeting a whole bunch of people are going to be looking you in the eye the WHOLE time.  It’s a bit overwhelming and just try not to be engaged in that!  Something happens when two people lock eyes.  It is the genuine spirit of oneness and true love in my opinion.  I love true love that’s not associated with having a crush or lust, but just being a part of.  Two humans connecting and not getting hung up on race, gender, or discrimination of any kind.  It’s a beautiful thing!

I just finished reading this post and it made me get all reflective about my honesty during my shares.  I prayed and prepared a bunch before the first one and have to say it was pretty damn honest.  The second I prayed but didn’t prepare and it was a bit too honest if that’s possible.  In this part of Oregon people tend to share generally more than getting into the sticky and dark details.  I have usually shared the detailed stuff since I got sober in CA so it was a bit hard to get used to when I moved here.  I can say I see more of the benefits of sharing in a general way.  It’s more mature and it gets the point across without getting into the gossip.  When you share at a meeting there is the understanding that what you say won’t be repeated, hello the word Anonymous is the the title of the group.  I think that sharing at a group level in a general way more protects who you are than being worried someone will judge you or gossip about you.  You have a sponsor and close friends to tell all the sordid stuff too anyways.

BUT, I will tell you one thing that cancels all the above out.  I always get so much out of a really raw share.  This is the truth for me.  So when I opened my mouth up at the meeting to chair, a bunch of kind of embarrassing stuff came out.  It wasn’t too detailed, just general statements about my low spots in sobriety in the past.  The theme was obviously low spots and emotional sobriety.  I hardly got into any solution in my share.  It turned out well, I got to hear more of other people’s solution.  And if I want to get really honest, is my point in sharing to look good or be honest?  Uh.  That’s a hard one.  I know that I’m not there to run a campaign.  I’m there to be honest and stay sober.  Sometimes that looks ugly and precarious.  But I think I have more of a chance of staying sober.  I think praying about what to share and focusing on your own experience, strength, and hope works too.  And focusing on helping newcomers and others too.  If you are honest chances are that will happen anyways.

In yoga news, I got a gig!  I’ll be teaching Tuesdays (4:30pm & 6pm) and Thursdays (4:30pm) at Brave Heart Pilates & Yoga in Milwaukie which is in South Portland.  I’m going to try to work on getting a schedule posted up on here and on Facebook.  I’m obviously very excited to finally be able to have regular classes which I will teach!  I’m hoping to teach at other studios eventually too.  One day/step/yoga job at a time.  Baby steps.

I have to say that after living in the city for so long it felt good to drive back home here to Wilsonville after my yoga audition.  I feel suffocated in the city.  That may change again, I used to love living in the city.  Pics below from a fruit show out in Canby.  My family is still off sugar so we found the next best thing, ha.  H loved sampling the pears and apples and of course running around.

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I’m going back to Milwaukie before I start teaching to pick up a key.  A key to an actual yoga studio!  I recently reconnected with an old friend and we were talking about how when you have struggled in life you really are appreciative and grateful for opportunities.  I’m not sure if people who haven’t had to struggle feel the same way.  I’m so grateful for a chance to teach yoga.

I wish all of you out there the same feeling and much love as well.

Xo & namaste~

HUSTLE & FLOW

So I haven’t really been hustling.  Hustling for me would be working until you fall into bed at 1am, only to wake up at 5am to start again.  So it hasn’t been that.  It’s been a flow-like hustle, if that makes any sense.  Life flows.  Wake up to, mama, mama, feed the little bear, change a poopy, nap (him not me), yoga, write, crochet (making crocheted presents for Christmas this year), look for yoga gigs, follow up on yoga gigs, walk with little bear, feed him again, change another poopy, go to my yoga apprenticeship, read in bed while drinking tea, and goodnight.  Taking care of H during the day seems like such a lazy thing but when I really stop to think about it, it’s not.  It’s a bunch of tiny little tasks that make up mama hood, it really is.

The apprenticeship has been going beyond well.  Every time I’m there I think, is this really my life?  I was also invited to the staff’s holiday party which made me feel giddy.  I’m going to a party with actual yoga teachers, I have been telling people in amazement.  My thrall annoys even me, don’t worry I am aware of how dorky I am.  Why not enjoy it while it lasts though?  I’ve learned a lot there.  Especially interesting how a couple of my mentors use imagery and stories during class.  Also I’ve been going to my main mentor’s back to back classes, the first is all level Vinyasa and the second is Basic Hatha.  She teaches with the same lesson for both, just modifies per the class.  I got to check out her lesson plan book and read whichever classes I wanted to.  I went out and bought mine and started writing in my classes.

AND, pending that I get my CPR certificate next week I will be teaching a demo class (a whole class in a studio!) on 10/29.  It will be open to the community, it’s a free class so I hope some regulars will be there.  I’ve really valued what my main mentor has taught me about being prepared for class:  go early and practice.  In my case, I can practice at home.  It really makes a difference.  I had an audition last week, they are interested in hiring someone who can teach Power Vinyasa.  I practiced and practiced and I felt really confident.  Who cares if I said, fix your gaze upon your Drishti, that piece of dirt on the ground that’s not moving.  Uh.  Waiting to hear back from them in the hopes they saw beyond me mentioning how there was dirt on their studio floor, lol.  Just for the record the floor was not dirty, I have no idea why I said that.

H’s other grandma came for a visit.  It was good to have her here, she is IN LOVE with that boy and wanted to babysit a ton for me.  I got to go meet with a sponsee, do a bunch of yoga, and even went to see a movie with AA peeps.  I’m very grateful that she really wants to be a part of his life, she flies out here a lot to see him.  H loves spending time with her.  She takes him on three hour walks and lets him walk, climb, or crawl almost anywhere he wants.  Toddler paradise.

It’s been colder here which has been nice.  It rained this past weekend and at one point there was a huge windy downpour, all of the rain blowing sideways.  I had a sideways moment myself pretty soon after that.  Man, my head is so LOUD sometimes.  Loud and believable.  I got called on to share when I was right in the middle of it and all I could really say was how low my self esteem was and that even though I felt so bad I have been there before and know that it will pass.  Sometimes I don’t have the wise shares.  I’d rather be honest and get some relief.  Some friends invite me out for desert after and I went.  Never underestimate the power of simple human interaction.  It felt good to just sit, eat sugar, and laugh.  The feelings and loud head has since passed like it always does.  This is why I love AA so much.  It taught me to just sit tight.  A drink will solve a loud head temporarily only.  I really strive toward being comfortable in my on skin.

And speaking of sugar, our household is on a no sugar challenge until Halloween.  We get stickers for every day that we don’t eat sugar.  I asked my step-dad what the reward is for getting straight stickers and he said, you get to eat sugar on Halloween.  Ha.  It will be interesting to see if I last and if I can bounce back on if I sugar relapse.

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Halloween approaches.  I am very excited for it but am trying to live in the moment.  H is going to be a bear, same as last year.  For some reason I bought two bear costumes in different sizes when he was just three months old.  There is a gathering in our neighborhood and then I am so very interested to see how he acts during trick or treating!  I’m so excited!  It’s hard to live in the moment all of the time, ack.  And AA is having a speaker, potluck, and dance later that night.  Fun, fun, fun.

I hope all of you are enjoying Fall so far.  I wish the best for you as the holidays approach.

Love and light.

~Namaste.

THAT FIRST RIGHT THING

Anyone familiar with AA slogans?  There’s a ton of them, they’re brought up in meetings as being annoying but simple staples in recovery.  This past while I’ve been hearing the same one over and over, “Do the next right thing.”  The slogan, “First things first,” could be applied as well.  This is super relevant to me right now as my last day at my job (at my last job?!) was last Friday.  What exactly is my next first  right next thing?  For me it is:

Waiting.

And today it was emailing a couple of yoga leads.  Waiting on answers.  Waiting on other people.  Like my son when he doesn’t get what he wants five seconds ago, I’m not a fan of waiting around.  I’m impatient.  I want to know what I’ll be when I grow up yesterday.  Since I’m 38, I’m years late on figuring that out, in my mind at least.  Closer to knowing what I don’t want to but still not sunk deep into the center of the bulls eye.

The days are rolling out into a nice clip.  Coffee.  Toddler.  Sesame street.  Sand box outside.  Getting into things in the garage.  Eating breakfast slowly.  There is no thinking about things to do before work.  There is only now and this.  It is peaceful and feels right but I’m eager to make some kind of living as well.

Going on a last minute camping trip helped too.  My sponsor had said she was going camping.  It worked out that I could go for one night, my first night away from H since he was born.  I guess that has to happen sometime, eh?  My poor mom got up with him a couple of times.  There was a potluck and a meeting around the camp fire.  I didn’t sleep as much as I thought I would.  We were serenaded till almost midnight by some ex hippie rockers and an acoustic guitar.  I read with my flashlight under my sleeping bag.  Early risers woke me up at about 6.  I rode up and back with a friend.  It was nice to talk with her in the car, hang out with my sponsor and other friends, and enjoy camp life:

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It sprinkled in the morning, thankfully nothing like the last camping trip.  There was another meeting that morning.  I think it’s been years since I’ve been to two meetings in one day as I attended a meeting back home that same night.

And I got to see this guy when I got home:

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Back to the next step:  Living.  Living amends.  Being a good mom.  Applying for jobs.  Being thrifty.  GOING TO MEETINGS.  Working out that yoga vibe.  Praying like a mofo.  What else?  Oh yeah, laughing, smiling, enjoying my son, anticipating that next thing with positivity, and stepping into the things that come my way.

The next right thing.  Looking up, capturing that moment, and being grateful for it.

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Love and peace to you all.

~Namaste.

A PINK & GERMY CLOUD

H & I are flying solo (solo plus one?) for the next couple days, the parentals headed to Cannon Beach yesterday.  We will meet them there this week to C A M P, as in an actual tent.

I personally love camping, the last trip I went on was years ago was in Humbolt area.  Our camp was in the middle of all of these giant red trees, trees so vast that it got dark around 3pm because they blotted out the sun.  I always have this feeling of being so in the moment when I camp and I’m not overly worried about life.  It recharges me and gives me a new perspective.  Life is so simple, it revolves around just eating, visiting, and trying not to get eaten by bears or bugs.

Camping with a toddler though?  Huh, is all I have to say about that. I’ve come up with several mental plans as far as sleep and early wake up times but let’s all be honest, camping with a toddler will be full of unknown variables and absolutely impossible to contain or control.  Another life lesson for this girl who LOVES to control!  One of my step-sisters has a two year old, so I am grateful that I won’t be the only one toddler wrangling.  My parents and other family members will be there to help too.  There is a coffee shop that opens at 6am, a playground we can walk to, and I will pack tons of weapons, er, I mean tools.  There will be Annie’s goldfish galore, heavy duty wipes, a booster seat, apple sauce, toys that are cleanable, ect.  By ect. I mean like about 50 other things.  I will plan as much as I can like always….Hopefully I can sneak away for a yoga session by the ocean at some point.

Speaking of yoga, not that I’m counting or anything, but there were EIGHT people in attendance on Saturday.  There aren’t words to describe how happy that made me.  I was sick, I couldn’t do all of the movements even 70%, and I kept saying chaturanga for cobra, but it was SO  AWESOME.  In theory I have let go and let god, and tried not to get attached to the fruits of my labor, but in reality?  Damn, it felt good to see a healthy crowd out there.  Yoga, Wilsonville!  Yoga!  I am praying about if I will stay at that spot in September.  The weather will probably be nice during that month.  I’ve had issues with finding another spot although Parks & Rec has been very supportive.  I have felt a break in the former hostility felt about offering a class there, which could just be my own ignorance about what is really going on.

And since I was sick I made a decision to cancel the moms group last Friday.  I went to work and the free yoga sick, it wasn’t about that.  I do not want to be germy around babies, most of the moms bring their babes to the group.  So I was posting a cancel on FB when another mama who goes said that she would cover it.  Next week too while I’m camping, so the Mama Bear show will go on.

THEN, I got an email last week that Peaceful Dumpling had posted a post I had sent in!  Click here to read it.  It felt really good to have that happen, geez!  I may go on to submit more over there, I am pretty knocked out by the site.  It’s basically all about being well.

So sometimes life is hard and sometimes life is good.  I heard that early in sobriety.  Life gets good, gets hard, and then gets boring.  I wanted to drink before at each of those situations.  That is sobriety, dealing with life as it is without taking a drink.  Feeling good, being sober, also known as a pink cloud.  What do you hear when you come in?  They don’t last.

I have hoarded thousands of pictures on my camera and am in the process of putting them on cds and deleting.  The following are random ones I liked as I was sorting through:

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I’ve been thinking a lot about self care and what to do when sick.  My sponsor said her sponsor used to always ask her, what have you done for self care today?  I’ve been going to bed early, scaling my practice back, drinking a lot of tea, eating well, sitting a lot, and pausing half way on the stairs.  I am not good at scaling back or sitting.  I would prefer to DO.

I think it is growth if I listen to my body and let it have the chance to recover from a sickness.  I am trying even though it is hard for me.  Another subject for another post.

So here we come dirt, possible toddler melt downs, and bugs!  Life is up and down and unexpected.  I am so GRATEFUL for that today.  I am grateful that I remember everything the next day as well.

Peace & love to you all!

Xo