Thursday, July 30, 2015

When The Dalai Lama Says It Best :: II


Choice.

Choice.

Choice.

I sound like a broken record.

It's an idea that I covered several times when I was writing under my pen name.

Probably because it is so simple.

STUFF IS GOING TO HAPPEN...

That is life.

Earth School can be a bitch sometimes.

But, we can either let those lessons make us bitter and unkind, or we can truly learn from them to make our life more light and fulfilling.

No one is going to get out of this school without learning some embarrassing, heart breaking, knock-the-breath-out-of-you lessons.

Now, are you going to spend the rest of your life taking it out on everyone around you, or are you going to allow it to make you a more understanding and compassionate person?

Namaste,






Thursday, July 23, 2015

How To Create Your Sacred Space


It was the Thursday before the Summer Solstice.

I was hobbling around the apartment, still in the process of getting things out of "Bachelor Pad/Frat House" mode.

HUH?!

I was not at home much the first four months of this year.

It was good for us, as a couple, to spend time apart.  We've been together for 17 years.  The breathing room was needed for so many reasons.

Good for Ken, who needed some space to spread his wings and discover who he truly is, without me around.

Good for me to be someplace that was more conducive to my healing.

But, upon my return, I discovered that our apartment was most certainly not a space that "greeted" us or "lifted" us.

IT'S BEEN SLOW GOING...

I am slow.  I need frequent breaks off my ankle throughout the day.  And when six o'clock rolls around, I am usually done.

Ken is busy with his business and adjusting to his new job.  He is a champ and will help out when asked and is being a great partner by keeping the newly organized and cleaned spaces, clean and organized.

That Thursday, it was finally time to take a good look at my office, which had once again turned into the "transition station".  Filled with furniture that wasn't being used, shipping boxes for Ken's biz, old computers, etc.  

And, to make it even more depressing, my desk had been commandeered by Ken for his biz.  It had been left in the living room after a small dinner party, and never made it back into my office.

Nothing from my old Sacred Work Space was there.


And that was fine with me, because I am no longer that person.

My needs have shifted.  I still need a work space, but what I need more than anything right now, is a space where I can exercise and do yoga.

This means I need to completely clear out my office, leave my area rug and bring in the television from the living room so I can do my yoga and exercise DVDs.

THE PLANTS...

Ken was a doll and watered my plants while I was gone, but, unfortunately, they had not been rotated in five months.

My poor indoor garden was wild and out of control.  One had even started to grow into the window pane.

The only thing that made sense was to move them out, clean them up and give them a change of scenery.

So, I hobbled my indoor garden out onto my front porch.

I wasn't really focused on anything other than clearing out the space and just took all the stuff out there without really thinking about it.


When I was done, I stepped back and was in awe of what had transpired.

I walked out onto the porch and felt my spirit sky rocket.  My indoor garden was now my porch garden.  Even though the plants still need to be tended to, it's amazing how much they grew and how lush they are.


When I sat down to take it all in, I was treated to another perspective.

It was the most lifted and light I had felt all year.

Which miraculously led to getting out my camera and taking some photos.

Something I haven't done in a VERRRRRRRY long time.


It had been so long, I almost forgot that I am a photographer.

It's nice to see that I haven't lost my touch.

THE MORAL OF THIS STORY

Well, first of all, if you want to make your home a Sacred Space, a space that will support you and cradle you, you must understand that it will always be in motion.

As you change, the way you use your space will change.

But, what is most important is that you always try to create an inviting, centering spot; somewhere in your home, where you can retreat from the world.

And, I'll wrap things up with another Latrelle Ross Original Meme ;-)


Copy, paste, share - ENJOY!

Namaste,


Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Something To Share...

A little something from my heart to your heart.

A meme from me to copy, and paste wherever you want.

Your desktop, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest.

Or even your own blog.

I don't care.

It's all yours <3




Trust and allow life to unfold.

Namaste,


Thursday, July 2, 2015

Lessons Learned (And Re-Learned) In Physical Therapy



There is so much more to P.T. than getting my body where it needs to be.

I'm learning a lot; about myself, the people around me and life itself.

Learning and re-learning so many things...

1. SOMETIMES YOUR BEST ISN'T GOOD ENOUGH. SOMETIMES YOU HAVE TO DO BETTER. 

This was a tough one for me.  My best has always been good enough, that was, until I ventured into the journey of physical therapy.  I had a week where I was doing the best I could.  I missed a couple of appointments due to circumstances that were out of my control.  Unfortunately, the hospital has a policy and if I miss any more, I will  be discharged.  My therapist understood, but she has rules she has to follow.  For the first time I can remember, my best was not good enough.  I had to do better.

2. NO PAIN, NO GAIN.

This is an obvious one.  Every pain-filled, Aleve managed day has been followed by more strength than I had the day before.  My therapist told me, she hates seeing people in pain, but, as a physical therapist, if a patient comes in pain free, it's almost like she has to say "Well, let me see if I can change that."  It's really the only gauge as to whether you are building muscle or not.

3. COURAGE COMES FROM FACING YOUR FEARS.

I was terrified the first time I had to rotate my foot on the balance board.  I had this irrational fear that my hardware was going to snap.  That the screws would come undone.  All these crazy fears, even though I knew I was good to go and that I had to do this to get the muscle to grow around my hardware.  The board exercises are now my biggest nemesis, but have also become my greatest source of courage.

I'm sure I'll get to this point.  Right now, I stand on one foot and hold onto some bars.
30 times back to front, left to right and rotate left, then rotate right.
(Photo courtesy of:  www.FootHealthCare.com)

4. PHYSICAL STRENGTH = EMOTIONAL STRENGTH.

And, along the same lines as #3 - once you become physically stronger, you will be emotionally stronger as well.

The idea of getting behind the wheel of a car, after not driving for almost four months was extremely overwhelming for me.  Once the boot came off, I was allowed to drive, but I experienced so much anxiety at the thought, I had to ask everyone to please be patient with me.

I knew it was because my left leg was so weak and that once it got stronger, I'd feel more confident.  And, sure as shootin'!  Once my leg became stronger, I was ready to get behind that wheel and embrace a little more independence.

5. A CHALLENGE IS SIMPLY THE UNIVERSE CHECKING IN TO SEE HOW BADLY YOU REALLY WANT SOMETHING.

Currently I can go up the stairs, slowly, changing every other foot, as long as I'm not carrying anything heavy.  Now, going down, that's a whole other ball of wax.  And apparently this is normal.  Going down the stairs involves a whole other process and takes more time to achieve.

Unfortunately, I am struggling.  My left knee is not bending when it should, or like it should.  My quadriceps are weak and so is my hip.  It's amazing to me that I can't get my leg to do what it is supposed to.  That I still have so much more work to do, even though my ankle has snapped back and is where the doctor and therapist want it to be at this point.

I have a whole new batch of exercises to help me deal with this dilemma.  In the meantime, I'm realizing that running up and down the stairs is something I really took for granted and I can't wait until I can do it again.

6. DON'T FORGET TO BE KIND, GENTLE, LOVING AND PATIENT WITH YOURSELF.

I really expect a lot of myself.  That's pretty normal.  I think everyone is like that.  But when things happen, like the scenario in #1, it's important to be patient and gentle with yourself.  So, your best wasn't good enough today.  That's OK.  Step back, take a deep breath, forgive, learn and take the wisdom into the next day.


7. SOMETIMES IT'S JUST NOT YOUR DAY.

Some days, no matter how hard you try, it's impossible to get a muscle to move the way it needs to.  I have had a pretty good run in PT.  Everything I have had to do, I have been able to do.  Sure, I might be super stiff and the first couple of reps are difficult, but I have always been able to work through it.  Until, that one day a couple of weeks ago.

No matter how hard I tried, I could not get my ankle to rotate to the right when I was on the balance board.  I was talking to it, swearing at it, closing my eyes to visualize it moving, trying desperately to get my ankle to "hear" the messages from my brain.  Finally my therapist butted in, "Sometimes it's just not your day.  And that's OK."

8. THERE ARE MANY ROADS TO EACH DESTINATION.

Finally, in conjunction with #7, if one thing doesn't work, try something else.

As I mentioned before, I'm having issues getting my left knee to bend when and how it's supposed to.  We switched to a shorter step.  We changed my right leg movement so only my heel was stepping down.  Now, we are doing a move that focuses directly on my hip, because I shared that it felt like I was "settled" in my knee and that was making it difficult to bend.

I'm standing sideways on the step and raising my right leg up and down off the floor, which forces my left hip to do the "lifting".  And, surprise, surprise, my left hip is getting stronger.  I'm not totally out of my knee yet, but it shouldn't be long.

****

Namaste,


Monday, June 22, 2015

When The Dalai Lama Says It Best :: I


It's crazy.

I know.

But when you stand back, you see that it all comes from you, in some way.

This is why you must learn to FORGIVE!

Yourself first, for setting it into motion.

Then the other person, so they can no longer have any power over you.

(Here's one of my early posts, when I was writing under my pen name, to help you out : )

THIS DOESN'T MEAN...

I am a firm believer in this:
Image courtesy of  www.lotustarot.wiki
That crap just happens.

This is what the Wheel of Fortune Tarot card means.

It refers to those forces, which we truly don't have control over.

It's devastating that people die in tsunamis.

Sure, they chose to be there, but they did not have control over Mother Earth.

Someone who is in the wrong place at the wrong time, and is sexually assaulted - this is different too.

We can not control the actions of others.

It's a wild card; The Wheel of Fortune.

SO, PLEASE DON'T CONFUSE THE TWO IDEAS

His Holiness is simply pointing out that when you get stuck in the rut of making everything you are unsatisfied with, someone else's fault, you are just that - stuck.

Standing back and taking responsibility for your part, is the only way to grow.

It's the only way to truly be free.

Namaste,


Tuesday, June 16, 2015

When Physical Therapy Gets Grueling


I'm not going to sugar coat it.

I have been in pain.

Lots of it.

Physical therapy is necessary and challenging.

For the past week I have been dealing with severe hip and knee pain.

I know!

Hip and knee pain?

"I thought you broke your ankle?"

OH!  THE REALITY!

Here's the deal.

When you are not allowed to put weight on your ankle for twelve weeks, all of the muscles that coincide with this process will atrophy.

I did a lot of leg and knee lifts, as well as thigh squeezes while I was following my doctor's orders, which helped, but still could not avoid the reality that important muscles were not being used.

So, not only am I exercising the bejeezus out of my ankle at PT, I am also doing a lot of work on my knees and hips.



"PT CAN BITE MY BEHIND!"

A lovely quote from me to the students in my Brilliant Blogging Facebook Group.

Because I was having an especially difficult week, I was late posting the Weekly Q&A.

Physical therapy is beneficial, but it can also be grueling.

My gratitude-filled outlook was nowhere to be found.

I was tired.

Tired of being in pain.

Tired of not being able to run up and down the stairs.

Tired of not being able to stand for more than an hour or so.

Tired of not working.

Tired of my only face-to-face, social interaction being with my family and my physical therapist.

Tired of being "broken".

The last five months just came crashing in and I was beat.



PERMISSION TO BE HUMAN...

I am not one of these people who can't stand it when things get real.

I don't shy away from how horrible life can get.

I don't stick my head in the sand.

AND I don't dismiss friends who need to vent on a bad day.

You will never hear me cut them short with a "Well, it sounds like you're going to be fine", followed by changing the subject.

"You have to feel to heal."

If that means facing something icky and shedding a few tears, then do it!



TODAY IS BETTER...

I am happy to say that things are coming along.

I am still in pain.

I am still frustrated.

But not as much.

I know in my heart that this is temporary.

That "this too shall pass".

And I know in my heart that this is all leading to something more spectacular than I could ever come up with on my own.

Namaste,





Wednesday, June 10, 2015

How To Age Gracefully With Yoga


OK.

So, I'm nowhere near being an elder, but I am most certainly older than I was yesterday.

And, like everyone, I will be getting a little older every day.

That being said, today I am going to address how yoga can help you age gracefully.

My first yoga practice was done from a chair.

Yup!  

That's right.

A chair.

It was a series meant for seniors, but I found that doing this slow, flowing yoga was a benefit to me because I had been sedentary for a while and it helped to create physical balance and relieve stiffness.

Time went on and I graduated on to Hatha Yoga and other challenging series' put out there by my favorite teachers.

And, from time to time, I would revisit the chair series for its centering and calming affects.

YOGA AND AGING...

I just turned 46.

As I said, no where near an elder, but most definitely starting to feel the affects of aging, especially when I get wrapped up in my daily life and ignore my physical body.

Aging makes our bones more brittle, makes our muscles stiff and can cause us to hunch over.

Yoga counteracts these realities by strengthening the front and the back of the body, to better support your spine and lengthen your muscles.

And, as I mentioned earlier, all of this can be addressed by doing simple, slow, deliberate yoga, done while sitting in a chair.

I FOUND THIS GREAT VIDEO FROM THE CHOPRA CENTER!

It is a great place to start, no matter what your age.

All you need is a chair without arms and a blanket or bolster to support your feet.


ALREADY FEELING IT?

So, if you're already feeling the aches and pains associated with aging, I have some great news for you.

Yoga will definitely help you, no matter how old you are or how long you have been living with aging stiffness and pain.

As we get older, we have a tendency to become more tentative.

If you don't use it, you lose it.

This is all that's happened.

And yoga will slowly get you "using" those muscles again, with no strain or stress.

It will empower you to feel more comfortable in your body.

HERE ARE SOME SENIORS WHO CAN VOUCH FOR THE POSITIVE AFFECTS OF YOGA...

I just love this video.


NO MORE EXCUSES!

No more reason to continue living with aging stiffness and pain.

No more reason to be all hunched over.

Lengthen your muscles.

Rediscover balance.

And embrace the physical and emotional strength that can come from a simple, basic, yoga practice.

Namaste,

P.S. It goes without saying, please be sure to discuss this, or any, basic practice with your doctor before embarking on your yoga journey.  XOXO

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Summer Slowdown


As most of my regular readers know, the beginning of June is the start of my Summer Slowdown.

Obviously, I've been in this mode all year, thanks to my fractured ankle (which is mending right on track).

So, it's not going to be too much of a change ;-)

What all this extra time has given me is the chance to create a lot of things that have been on my mind for quite a while and revisit some things I created that I always knew were meant for something more.

I'm embracing my Gemini by having way too many irons in the fire right now, with very little finished.

I just need to hunker down and focus.

And this is what Summer 2015 is going to be for me: The Summer Of Finishing What I've Started!

Don't forget to take some time to slow down, yourself.

Until next time!

Love and hugs,




Wednesday, May 27, 2015

How Important Is Your "Vibe"?



I was sifting through my Facebook newsfeed, looking at all of the things my friends have posted.

Every time I wanted to comment or share, I immediately lost interest as soon as I had to think about what I was going to say and how I was going to say it.

OVER THE YEARS...

Over the years my Facebook habits have changed - considerably!

Of course, some of that is due to becoming wiser in the ways of social media.  And some of it is due to being aware of what "vibe" I am sending out.

Your Vibe - the emotions, feelings, thoughts and ideas - the way you make people feel. How their body chemistry and brain chemistry changes while interacting with you.  In other words the reaction people have at the thought of you, or at the words you convey. That is your energy - your vibe.

Whoo!

*wiping sweat from forehead*

That was close!

I gave you just enough woo-woo stuff to enlighten you, but not enough to turn you into a hippy.

You're OK. ;-)

BUT, SERIOUSLY, IT'S IMPORTANT.

And if you're all into the concept of branding, it's a huge factor in your presence, especially your online presence.

So, somewhere along the line, I quit getting political (except for some of those great Gay Agenda/Gay Marriage spoofs.  They are simply too funny not to share.)


Facebook is where I communicate with people I know and care about.  Even my online friends and I share some sort of emotional bond/shared experience  - that brings us to the level of caring enough to want to know how the other is doing.

WHICH BRINGS ME TO...

Where I'm at now with Facebook.

I LOVE the pictures my friends put up of their kids.  I definitely keep up with those.

I like and share interesting ideas, funny memes, inspirational memes, and the big events in my life.  This year has seen mostly statuses about my ankle.  Just to keep people in the loop.

And sharing is done very strategically.  All cat/cute animal pictures are shared with my niece who LOVES animals.


This way just about anyone else who would be interested in seeing it will see it because we are all friends with my niece.

I share superhero, comic book, rock and roll, science fiction with Ken because I know anyone who is friends with the both of us would like seeing that too.


But, of course, there are always a couple of things a week that I share specifically with the person I know it is intended for.

Like this picture, which I shared with my friend who loves to play this game. I've been trying to get him back for years.


THAT'S IT!

Pretty simple.

I check my Facebook and it's like micromanaging the philosophy that I apply to my life.

If it doesn't lift me up and make me feel lighter, then it's not the way to go.

In return I have created a level of "being" for anyone who comes in contact with my page.

Which, as I mentioned, works in the real world too.

We are responsible for what we carry out there and bring into the space of others.

And now that you know better, please, it is now time to do better ;-)


Please, copy and share with your friends on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or on your blog :)

Namaste,











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