Thank your sweet body for telling you “I need this.” Oh, how I have neglected and ignored you, body. No, not ignored. Pushed, hardened, toughened, steered away from healing and softening and nurturing.
I have put healing you, body, on hiatus.
After an extended (extended: meaning I was too stressed, tired, lazy) to continue to climb the mountain of mindfulness, I decided to make a concerted effort to come back to myself tonight.
I have developed a rather nagging subconscious voice. Let’s name her “Carlotta”–because she’s spicy and mindful–who has been nagging me in a thick Spanish accent (see: Sofia Vergara) “Hey! Remember that whole mindfulness thing you claim you’re so into? Well you should probably try…you haven’t meditated, or blogged, or read anything in weeks, mamacita!”
I caved into Carlotta tonight and decided to do a restorative yoga sequence. Here’s what that is all about:
Restorative Yoga: A form of yoga that seeks to achieve physical, mental, and emotional relaxation with the aid of props. The use of props makes it easier for you to maintain balance while you are stimulating and relaxing your body.
Full disclosure: I normally stick to Vinyasa style yoga which is anything but restorative and my only goal during those sequences is to ensure that I don’t pass out because I’ve forgotten to breathe or get blinded by my own sweat running into my eyeballs.
I begin my restorative yoga sequence in a standing stretch (thank you yogaglo.com) where my arms are near my ears reaching towards the ceiling.
I might as well be holding a 20 minute plank pose with how my muscles are shaking, straining, as my nerves are trying to rapidly reorganize themselves to help me hold the pose. Nerves are zinging, pinging, prickling. This hurts.
My teacher is lithe, flexible, a perfect smile seemingly radiating from her perfectly balanced and restored self.
I look and feel like I’m being put in one of those 18th Century torture devices that stretch you out limb for limb, little by little. I think they called it “the rack.“
Finally, we move on. The next couple of poses don’t hurt and I start to feel my ping-pong nerves start to settle.
Child’s pose. One of my favorites. Unless, I’m in it for 15 minutes and I can’t feel my feet/bottom half of my legs and my mind starts wondering if this is what it would be like if I didn’t have those body parts anymore.
“Breathe deep into the belly.”
Maybe, if I breathe deep into my feet, I’ll feel them again. Oh, let’s hope!
We finally move to Savasana, which for the record, is just a yogic term for lay on your back and no moving. Other people like to call this…napping.
Suddenly, Ms. Lithe-zen-restored-balanced yogi wishes me “namaste” and to my amazement, an entire 30 minutes have passed me by.
I feel…dare I say it…a little more like myself.
Maybe the “restoring” isn’t about finding perfect balance between mind, body, and spirit. But, instead, restoring little parts of us that get frayed or rubbed too many times in life.
It’s good to be back.