Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Better Out Than In

... as Shrek would say.

Busy but fun weekend. What the heck did I do this past weekend? Saturday night I went to the International Burlesque Festival that was held locally. Four + hours of major professional talent. Plus a couple of my friends danced. I drooled over the costumes and was amazed at the dancing. Discovered something called "Boylesque" which yum. As much as I appreciate the female form in all its beauty, I'm a straight gal, let's face it. The fact that the dancer was flaming was completely beside the point; boy was hawt. And a classically trained dancer so mad skillz y'all.

Went fun shopping on Sunday. I probably shouldn't have... lord knows that money could have gone to a million other responsible things. But screw that I needed some pretties and some sparklies! I've got to say, it felt good to spend frivolously. I so seldom do it. Especially nowadays when pretty much every penny is spoken for.

Yesterday evening I went to a dance class and it was fabulous. I have so missed dance classes. It must have shook something loose energetically as well because starting about a half-hour after class weird ickiness came on. I'm pretty sure I was rocking a fever last night because can you say dreams?! Hoo-doggy. Plus I've had a headache since 2am. It comes and goes in intensity, but the dry coughing doesn't help. Also achy everywhere.

At this point, you're probably saying to yourself... dude, it's a COLD for god's sake. Which yeah, but up until the dance class I was feeling fine. No ickies, nothing. Plus I've been doing energy work on my root chakra and dancing is good for getting things balanced there and... who knows. Lord knows what I shook loose but I'm glad it's gone. All I know is that I'd rather be in bed right now but ah well. Such is life. Hopefully this will be short-lived because I have another super-busy fun weekend coming up and I DON'T want to miss it.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Crazy Days

Sorry for the quiet. I've been busy busy on the go for the last week or so. Lots of Stuff happening, but whether or not it is of interest to anyone besides me is up for grabs. Lots of internal Stuff, I guess.

Been getting some clear messages from the Universe/Great Spaghetti Monster/Whoever that there is some major transitions coming along soon, and some major Releasing of Crap. Mostly from the Root Chakra, and if you're going to release crap that's the first place you'd do it. Ha ha.

The Seven Major Chakras. Start from the bottom and work your way up.  Yes, the Root Chakra is actually there. Hence the poorly constructed bathroom humor.

It seems like it's really old stuff and frankly I don't know what's what. It's just important work I need to do. So, the yama/niyama stuff has kinda been put on hold until this gets sorted. Whatever "this" is.

I have been practice teaching yoga around town with various forgiving individuals who will let me do my thing without too many expectations. It has been feeling really good. I feel like the more I do it, the more comfortable I'll feel, and I'll be at the point where I can do actual classes hopefully the second half of the year. Fingers crossed.

Work has been crazy busy and I've been doing deep tissues left and right and I've done something to my shoulder. Let me tell you, icing your shoulder when the temperature outside is a balmy 0 is not a fun way to spend a morning. But I'm hoping a little bit of icing and a little bit of babying will sort this out before anything major happens. 'Cause if my shoulder goes, I'm screwed. At least now I have health insurance...

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Just TELL Me Already!

Every morning, I check my Yahoo horoscope. Mostly for kicks and giggles. However, it has been stuck on the same message for three days straight now:

I'm realistic enough to understand that this is a computer glitch. I'm woo-woo enough to believe it got stuck on this particular message for a reason.

I'm happy with either getting closer to someone I love or solving an old nagging problem. But for god's sake (or whoever's), could you give me a friggin' clue??

Thursday, January 16, 2014

I've Been Doing This too Long

This afternoon I got a text from an unfamiliar number saying that they still wanted to meet Ann Marie. I was all like "whaaa????" So I texted back and said I didn't know an Ann Marie and who is this?

Turns out it was a guy I met off Online Dating Site and he thought he was texting another friend with the same name as mine. Oops. He was kinda embarrassed but I thought it was funny.

Then I got embarrassed because I have ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA WHO HE IS. None. I can't place a face. He might be the last guy I went on a date with then said "yeah sure a second date" when I meant "yeah not so much", which you can read all about 'cause I totally blogged about it.



I've been at this game too damned long.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Self-Indulgence = Lying to Yourself?

Welcome to my ongoing trip through the world of the yamas and niyamas. I'm not posting links back to old posts at this point because I'm too lazy to go back and get them all. So I'm going to make you do the work and scroll through if you don't know what I'm talking about and want to catch up.

Last week my exercise was to notice when I was "nice" and when I was "real". I didn't notice much of a difference over the week so either I'm pretty good at being real or insanely good at deluding myself. I think it was more of a matter that I didn't really do anything that required me to choose between the two. So, moving forward I am going to keep my eyes open and hope I catch myself before I fall from real into nice. Hope springs eternal, eh?

This week's exercise is:
Spend this entire week in self-expression... Act on life-giving opportunities, despite the consequences. Observe what happens in you. Observe how others react. If you find yourself in self-indulgence, ask yourself: "what am I not expressing?"
This is another good one. I'm self-indulgent a lot. Especially when it comes to food. The bane of my waist line. I'm very good at making excuses, especially when it's 10:30 pm, I've had a long day at work and I'm sitting on the couch watching television, alone.

So what am I not expressing? Oh, so much. Loneliness. Anger. Sadness. Frustration. Confusion. You know, the usual suspects. So maybe I tell myself that extra slice of pizza won't hurt me this one time. Or it's okay to have that fourth slice of bread slathered in butter. Or peanut butter on a spoon.

Come ON. Peanut butter on a spoon people! How can that be a bad thing?!

So maybe self-indulgence isn't so much lying to yourself as pulling the covers up over your head so you don't have to see the truth. It's a way to hide, a coping mechanism when the truth gets to be too much to handle.

'Cause lets face it, sometimes the truth sucks donkey balls and you're sick to death of all the truth being hurled at you and fuck it if a chocolate chip cookie the size of your face is going to make you feel better then you're going to eat the goddamned cookie. Self-indulgent? Absolutely. But the truth is still there after the cookie is gone, isn't it? So, what are you going to do, eat another cookie or deal the truth you're trying to avoid?

And we all know that sometimes the second cookie wins. Sometimes, so does the fifth. After that, we just stop counting. But maybe if we faced the truth in the first place, we wouldn't have to count at all.

Then a cookie is just a cookie.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Atha Yoganusasanam

And now, the teachings of yoga are explained.

This is the first line of Patanjali's Yoga Sutras. A small book of around 196 sutras (ie, aphorisms) that expound upon ins and outs of yoga practice.

For me, it is more simply "and now, the teaching of yoga."

I have finally taken the next step to having yoga teaching added to my bodywork insurance so I will be covered. I have also put it out "there" that I am in need of some more practice teaching before I feel comfortable doing the real thing, and have made a request for warm bodies willing to be guinea pigs.

Is it facing fears? Is it simply following the path placed before me? Does it matter? I am moving, that is what matters.


Thursday, January 9, 2014

I Got Nuthin'.

About a third of the way through my final massage on Tuesday evening, I ran out of "give." I had nothing left. Two straight weeks of twice the work load sucked it out of me. But of course, I had to keep going. Because you can't just stop 20 minutes into a 90 minute treatment and say "I don't know about you, but I'm done here."

And it got me to thinking... when you've got nothing left to give but you gotta keep on giving, how do you cope?

I know I am not alone in this. Every single human being on the planet comes up with this challenge. The single parent, the overstretched office worker, the yoga teacher, the clerk at the grocery store... every last one of us has been called upon to give beyond capacity.

So how do you fill yourself back up when you don't have the time or money for a three-week retreat in San Juan?

This is a genuine question; I really don't have any answers. I think a lot of us turn to unhealthy things in order to cope: food, alcohol, sex, drugs, shopping, television, sleeping, etc. I also think many people take their anger and frustration out on others, because they just aren't able to say "I'm done. Can you give me some space?"

I know I have definitely used food and television as coping mechanisms. The food fills the hole (replace caring with food? Yeah, that'll work) and the television dulls whatever else I might be too tired to deal with. I'm also guilty of over-sleeping. Although sometimes it's hard to tell if I really need the sleep or if I'm hiding in it. Sometimes I think it's a little of both.

If you are experiencing this now as well, I hope you find a healthy way to fill your Caring Coffers back up. I hope that at some point you are able to do something for you, even if it is to lock yourself in the bathroom for five minutes while the kids are screaming and have a good cry.

Or better yet, take that three-week retreat to San Juan. Let me know how that goes.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Now vs. Then

Things I love about my second career as a massage therapist/yoga teacher/energy worker/all around woo-woo professional:
  • I am helping people
  • I work half the hours
  • As an eternal student, there is always more to learn about the physical/energetic body
  • The people I've met, both colleagues and clients
  • My workplace is inherently relaxing, both for the clients and me
  • I never do the same thing twice in a day
  • There is always room for growth

Things I didn't know I'd miss about having a 9 to 5 job until I stopped having one:
  • Paid vacations
  • Not having to stand all day
  • Being able to go to the bathroom whenever you want and having an actual lunch break 
  • Paychecks that are the same amount every time you get one
  • Everyone is done from work at approximately the same time every evening and everyone's weekend is Saturday and Sunday, so it makes things easier to have a life outside of work.
  • Workplace-sponsored health insurance
  • Workplace-sponsored retirement fund

I am exactly where I need to be at this moment in life, and I am eternally thankful and grateful that I had the opportunity and support needed to change my career. I think, however, that sometimes it can be easy to vilify what used to be in order to make what is that much more... shiny. The truth of the matter is, what I had before wasn't all bad (even Hell Job had its positives, let's be honest). 

I am happy where I am now, professionally. I work very hard at it, but I don't regret my decision. Not for one moment.

However, I will always miss paid vacations. I tell you, you don't know how fabulous they are until you don't have them any more.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Compassionate Truth

So, it's been a little while since I've posted anything. The two weeks containing Christmas and New Year's are super busy weeks at work, and that's essentially all I've been doing. I came home this past weekend and pretty much collapsed into a pile of goo. I could actually use one more day to recuperate, but instead I've picked up an extended shift today to cover for someone with a sick child. So y'know, not off to a great start with my New Year's goal of focusing less on work on more on my personal life. But luckily there's a whole year ahead of me.

If you've been reading (hi, all 8 of you!) you know that I've been working my way through this book:
Product Details
Follow the link if'n you want the book. And it's a good book, so you should follow the link.

I spent some extra time with the final Ahimsa exercise, as it seemed like something I really needed. I finally feel like I can move forward now, but I am planning on "bringing" that along for the ride. 30-muffle muffle- years of self-indoctrination do not disappear after just 3 weeks of telling yourself you're okay as you are. Would that it did!

The second yama is Satya, or truthfulness. It is not simply just always telling the truth. It is living honestly. It was very interesting how this chapter made a distinction between being "nice" and being "real". It seems to be the thing to do lately in certain spiritual circles to dump on the word "nice". Somewhere along the way nice has become a dirty word, and people rejoice in telling you - esp. if you consider yourself nice - how nice is such a passive aggressive, spiritually inferior thing to be, and then sit there with a smug smile on their face daring you to comment on the fact they just insulted you, because you're the one with the problem and they're just telling it like it is. You deal with it.

Ahem.  Moving on.

All that being said, I liked how she explained the difference as it resonated me. Another of my goals this year is to always speak my truth. Because if you do it correctly - ie, with compassion - you save everyone, including yourself, a lot of time and hassle. And I could think of a recent example where I chose being nice over being real (you can read all about it here), and it would have made everyone's life a lot easier if I had chosen "real".

This week's exercise is pretty simple: notice when you are being nice and when you are being real. What are the results? How does it make you feel? From whom do you seek approval, and does this change whether you are nice or real?

I think this will be an interesting week.

Last Chance.

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