Day 57: Unsettled

July 27, 2008

I’m sitting here at 11:30 pm totally unable to sleep. I didn’t intend to get up and write. But here I am. And maybe the blogging will help my mind to slow down and rest.

Today was great. I took regular class at 9:30 then took Advanced at noon. I feel great. My body is really showing up for me and I can’t believe I’ve come this far already. 68 Classes! Wow.

But as I get closer and closer to Training, I am finding it very hard to settle my mind. Especially during class. I am constantly thinking. Constantly thinking about Dialog, constantly thinking about Training, constantly thinking about being away, traveling, what I need to pack, managing my life away from my family for nine weeks. It’s maddening. Some days are harder than others. Some days it consumes my thoughts and my energy. A week or so ago I had a very hard night, where I felt the weight of all of it hit me at once. I’m a strong person, I’m determined, I’m stubborn, I know I can do this. But, man, it can eat my lunch from time to time.

Even tonight, I was laying in bed, with a particularly tricky chunk of Dialog running through my mind. I knew I wasn’t getting it, I knew something was missing. So my brain ran over and over it. Then I started thinking of how I have less than seven weeks to go, and well, it didn’t help the relaxing part. So maybe I should just vent it all out and be real and transparent and vulnerable here for all of you. Maybe that will somehow purge this vicious anxiety for me.

Going away is huge for me. I’ve never spent more than three days apart from my children, ever. I’ve never been apart from Dave since we’ve been married for more than five or six days. Nine weeks is a little bit longer than that. And I guess really, it’s not about the time. It’s not even really the distance. The thing that sets my mind reeling is the unknown. I know I am ready for this, I know I can do it. I know that. I know I can do the yoga, learn the Dialog, I know I can face my demons, but what else is there? The unknowns of Training are the scary part for me. I like to plan, to make lists, to keep things orderly. I like to know when, where, why, who, and how. Yes, I’m a control freak. I readily admit it. It’s part of what I believe makes me who I am. But it also challenges me. Because flying away to Acapulco for nine weeks with a slew of unknowns ahead doesn’t exactly lend itself to a controlling personality.

I can’t control what will happen while I am gone. I can’t control how people will respond to my absence. I can’t control the grief I will have over missing my family. I can’t control how my life will be managed by others for that time. I can’t control the if’s and when’s of being in class twice a day for nine weeks. I can’t control the uncontrollable.

What I can do is believe. I can believe in my support system. I can believe in the path I am on and the direction I am going. I can believe in my own abilities, the strength I have, and my own determination. I can trust that the preparations I responsibly make for my family will work themselves out over time. I can trust Dave. I can believe that things happen, in season, at the right time, when we are seeking them. I can believe in the yoga. I can believe in the process. I can trust myself, and never give up. I can do all of those things.

Tonight, I got up and came downstairs frustrated with my body. I wanted to control it, make it sleep so I can make it get up and make it go back to my mat. I wanted that control. But Michael reminded me, “Your body doesn’t want to sleep, so listen to it.” He’s right, and I have. But the root of the issue is that more than just listening, I need to let go; let things be unsettled and messy from time to time. Let it go, Ren. Get on the plane, go to Mexico, do the Training. Let things be as they will be.



Day 43: Acapulco Bound

July 13, 2008

I had Advanced today and it was awesome.  Ok OK….  On to the news..


Phew that feels better..  Yes, it has been settled.  As long as all these details (read: miracles) that we are expecting to align, do, I will be going.  In just over eight weeks.  Eight, yes.. Only eight weeks.  

Exhale now.. now..

I don’t know what else to say.  Um, I am very excited, and very anxious to go.  In addition, I am marveling at the support around me which I have written about.  Dave and I had opportunity to sit with mom and dad Jen and Arnie last night to really talk through it.  What I didn’t know was how elaborate the scheme had been to get me to go.  Those crazy kids have been plotting and planning this for months..  Sneaky sneaky.

So, it’s happening.  I have submitted my application and set the wheel in motion.  Now I just have to move a mountain, find the money, learn the Dialog, and really really really really love my kids to pieces for the next 8 weeks.  So, nothing out of the ordinary..

Oh, and Miss Jen, I hope you read this today.  I named my ‘baby’ Juan.

Today I did only Advanced Class. Which, yeah, not so much only. But only, meaning, I didn’t do regular class first. Which was fine. I actually didn’t mind much and felt plenty warmed up and ready to go. Advanced has become something I really really enjoy. There’s usually a point in the class where I seriously wonder why I have come, but that feeling subsides as the hours roll on. By the end of it, I feel awesome and light and happy. Probably the best thing about Advanced class is that the guard is kinda down and it’s ok to talk a little. This helps me, seeing as how I ALWAYS have snide comments in class anyway. Advanced gives me the chance to make them, aloud, AND laugh at myself. And trust me, I do plenty of laughing at myself. And laughing at with others.

There’s a posture we do called “rock the baby.” I’m not entirely sure this is the real name of that posture, and it’s certainly not the Sanskrit for it. But it really is like rocking a baby. And apparently last week during Advanced (where I was not in attendance) everyone took to naming their babies. I missed this totally fun class, but today I thought of a good name for my baby. Miss Jennifer said I would probably end up writing about it on my blog. Silly Jen, I don’t mention names on my blog! Only the teachers (and Daren), I said. The teachers are exempt from my rule. Hey, that’s what they get. But my baby’s name was so lovely and perfect. And as I sat there rocking my baby, looking lovingly at her my right leg, I couldn’t help but laugh.

It was a fun class and I enjoyed it. Tomorrow I will get up early and go back to class to make sure I don’t get so stiff I can’t walk. Ahhh, I love Bikram Yoga.

Did another Advanced today with Cynthia!! YAYY!! Moving on to class 13! Almost a quarter of the way home. I had a pretty good one today. It was really fun, engaging, and lighthearted. Didn’t feel quite as strong as on Sunday, but still rocking right along.

I’ve noticed a few strange things happening the past few days that I thought I’d go ahead and mention. One, my appetite is GONE. Totally gone. I can honestly say I haven’t really felt hungry in days. Probably since Saturday. I’ve been eating, still, knowing I do actually need calories to burn doing all these classes. But mostly it’s been salads and wheatgrass. Nothing exciting, just fuel. I tried to have some dried fruit and BLECH! the sugar made me almost want to vomit. So, just greens, and some juice for now. I am sure I’ll be ravenous once again, eventually.. you know, in the future.

Second change is WOW are my eyes dry. I wear contacts and even if I put them in right before class my eyes are so dry I almost have to remove them after class. This seems ironic to me seeing as how I am sweating BUCKETS in class. Maybe the heat/humidity dries them out?? No idea.

Lastly, and this is one of those “too much information” confessions – you’ve been warned, I am realllly unhappy that my skin is breaking out. UGH, it has to be detox because I was free and clear of any of these annoying bumps a week ago. And along the lines with skin annoyances are my poor feet. I got a pedicure today and the bottoms of my feet are so dry I think the woman wanted to run in fear. Sweat + carpet = Not good. Just saying. Also, since I’m sharing, the dry patches on the tops of my fingers are growing every day. Sexy right?? I know, and all thanks to this Challenge.

So overall, everything is great. I’m no worse for the wear. But I may need a dermatologist soon.. Just sayin’.

Keep on keepin’ on 😉

Day 9: Coasting

June 9, 2008

I woke up wicked sore today. Wicked, wicked sore. Thankyouverymuch Miss Cynthia Wehr. Yes, I am extremely aware of my hips now, thanks. Today’s early morning sweat-a-thon marked class 11 for me. YAYY for week two!

In spite of my near inability to pull my aching body from my bed this morning, I had an awesome class. I went into the room with no expectations at all. I decided to just let the class be. And much to my surprise and delight, I did extremely well. My stiff body opened up very quickly and I remembered how good it feels to go back to regular class after the grueling work of Advanced. It’s kind of like getting a nice break. After all the work and heat and sweat of Advanced, regular class feels like a cakewalk.. almost.

I cannot believe that by Thursday, I will be 1/4 of the way finished with the Challenge. This seems weird to me. But it’s nice to feel a little bit like things are coasting now, and smoothing out. Tomorrow I will do another Advanced with Cynthia. She’s leaving us on Thursday. I am very very sad to see her go. I have learned so much from her.

Sorry this is so short, but I have tons to get done today.

See you tomorrow!

Today’s been a really amazing day. I did regular class and Advanced Series. Wow, this is the best I’ve felt after Advanced ever. Typically it zaps me a little bit, or dehydrates me. But today I feel space, and awake, and just.. good. So this is good.

I banked three classes today which now puts me 2 ahead of my “day.” Banking classes is really really good because there is always a day when getting to class is nearly impossible.

The room was HOT today for both classes. I sweat more than I have in a long time and it felt amazing. I noticed the heat at about 108 right in the midpoint of Advanced and actually smiled because I wasn’t dying. This is progress, BIG time for me. Sometime around the Standing Splits I noticed that my Yogitoes and mat were squooshing sweat, good times. No longer absorbent. This is the life of that hot little room. I felt the sweat pour and it made me feel so good. I didn’t run from it, or try to stop it, I just let it happen. Progress.

I tried, and got into some postures that have been impossible for me before. My body has changed a LOT in the past few months and I can really feel it. Sitting in full Lotus for example is now totally comfortable YAY! I am really close to getting my foot behind my head and my Camel is coming along really nicely. The class felt great. I can’t wait to do Advanced again on Tuesday.

I’m feeling really good. Happy and relaxed. I think I am starting to hit a groove in the Challenge, finally. One week in. This is exciting. I had lunch with one of my Challenge friends Sherrilyn. It was fun to sit and chat, and eat AH-Mayzing salads. Sherrilyn was on the last Challenge too, and we share so many classes. It’s good to have someone to commiserate, laugh, and talk to.

Tomorrow’s class should be interesting. It’s always a little strange to go back to regular series after doing Advanced. So many weird things are sore. But it always feels good!


I love Saturday morning class. I always have. The early Saturday classes are often not as crowded, which helps too. This morning Arnie taught. It was a fantastic class. Perfect heat, good focus, good energy. I stood beside Daren, one of my favorite people to practice beside. I felt really really strong. Probably the strongest I have felt all week.

Today’s class was the kind that reminds me why I want to go to training, why I want to teach, and why I love this yoga. I found so much space in my body today. In Ardha-Chandrasana, I found the deepest backbend I have had in weeks. I just relaxed, letting go of the tension I have been holding for so long. It felt healing, and I felt a release that left me dizzy (this is GOOD!) during Pada-Hastasana. And since we’re on the subject of Pada-Hastasana, HELLO does this posture really kick my butt. It looks so deceptively easy. But it ramps up my heart rate right off.

The rest of the class was great. Again, grabbing my foot in Dandayamana-Janushirasana and using proper form in Dhaunrasana. I also feel much more confident with my balancing postures. Space, much more space. The Spine Strengthening Series is getting easier for me and I am finding Salabasana to me much less of a problem as my shoulders get stronger.

I left the studio today feeling SO good. I drank less than a quarter of my water, which is HUGE for me. And I am inspired to see how this new approach is going to affect my Challenge. Tomorrow I will do a lot of yoga with regular class and Advanced class earning me 3 more on my way.

I am going to try to take pictures in Advanced tomorrow to post here for you all to see..

Happy Saturday!