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Brand New Beginnings

Brand New Beginnings

Date Like A Queen TB

 

Hello loves!  It’s been a minute, hasn’t it?  It’s April and you know what that means. RENEWAL and GROWTH!  My birth month always ignites something in me.  This month, I’m birthing new beginnings.  My main focus is expressing gratitude on a daily basis and shedding complaints.

One of the reasons I haven’t been as active on this blog is that I’ve been engrossed with my work as a matchmaker at Tawkify.  It’s been an amazing experience connecting people to their higher joy on a daily basis.  I’m combining my observations as a matchmaker and love coach in a new column at Tribe Called Curl called “Date Like A Queen”.  Check out my first article about the ground rules for you regal journey.  As always, I am grateful to have you on this journey with me!

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REST!

REST!

Sometimes you just have to take a break so I did. I took Sunday and Monday off. I listened to my body and gave it the break it requested so I can go strong until the very end of this challenge. Rest is an integral part of #30DaysofFitness and I’m reveling in it. Until tomorrow…

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EUREKA!

Class with Courtney today was great! 3rd time’s the charm. Also got to see a few old friends at the studio. Wonderful day! Today’s greatest victory involved me waking up at the time I’ve been attempting to train myself to wake up and staying awake. I am stoked and encouraged. Other good news is no more yoga every day. Every other day starting Monday. Looking forward to having more time.

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DEFEAT?

DEFEAT?

There are just some days where everything feels wrong. Today was one of them. I did not want to do anything or go anywhere. Of course, I’m on my #30DaysofFitness journey and how I feel doesn;t override my commitment. Took Bikram with Courtney Mace once more and she truly is an excellent, generous teacher. That’s exactly what I needed to get through the class. Glad I did it. One more day of consecutive classes and then I begin alternating days until the end of the month. Looking forward to breaking up the routine!

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BREEZE!

BREEZE!

Today’s Bikram yoga class went by like a breeze! World Champion Courtney Mace taught and there is just something about her pace that makes me fly every time. It’s the same class and it’s just as hard except it isn’t.

Since my reset, doing Triangle has actually gotten easier or, shall I say, more manageable. In the past, it was torture. When I first started practicing Bikram it usually was the indicator that the Standing Series was almost done and all I had to do was hold on. During my 136 consecutive days of practice, it was just plain hard and I struggled to hold it. With this new run, it hasn’t been difficult to hold Triangle.

Let me be clear, Triangle–and all of Bikram yoga for that matter–remains and will always be challenging. It’s just that I have a chance at actually getting into the posture with the dialogue and holding on to it until the end. Courtney’s words and style today made it that much more easier.

I also am more aware and more willing to push myself these days. In the past, it was all about preventing injury. This time around, I feel strong. Here’s to getting stronger and healthier at the end of these 30 Days of Fitness!

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TIME!

TIME!

Day 4 of #30DaysofFitness involved another Bikram yoga class and 10 pushups. I have 3 more consecutive days of classes before I start alternating days next week. What I noticed today was that I really need to give myself more time. I am improving of course and I have a long way to go.

I was unable to stretch before class so, with my tightening muscles, there were some postures that were difficult for me to get into. Today it was Standing Forehead to Knee. I have historically had a difficult time holding myself in the first part of this posture and today I could barely lift up my leg to get into the first part. I see stretching and epsom salt in my near future for real.

In other good news, I took extra care to get ready after taking class. In that hour I ended up looking less like a beaten, soggy mess and more like a peaceful, glamorous version of myself. I liked it. I had a business meeting after class and I was presentable. The lesson here is all you need to do is take the time and there are amazing results. I will make sure to take time before and after each class to take care of myself. Onward!

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STRETCH!

STRETCH!

Day 3 brought a solid Bikram class and a few realizations. This month is not another yoga 30 day challenge. I’m going to class daily for the first 7 days to jump start my fitness. My focus is on fitness. It is on doing something healthy and active every day. I don’t want to make that activity only Bikram yoga so September is really about exploring other ways to be healthy.

I’ve been doing the 30 day squat challenge to some great results. I feel my lower back getting stronger. That is amazing! It is the weakest part of my body and remember it going out as early as my twenties. Even yoga failed to address its wonkiness and most likely exacerbated it. You can’t take 144 Bikram classes in 136 days without overtraining. I wish I had been doing the squats then to save/balance my back. I’m glad I found it today. My back feels strong and ready to play!

The other thing that I noticed today was a tightening up in class. My range of motion seemed limited. I made a real effort to stretch before and after class. It seems that Bikram class does not encompass all the beneficial stretching that my body requires so I’m putting it in.

These 30 days of fitness are going strong. I am really in touch with my body. I am paying attention and moving in conscientious ways that improve my practice and well-being astronomical. Looking forward to the next 27 days!

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PUSH!

PUSH!

Day 2 of #30DaysofFitness ended with a hot, humid and very challenging Bikram class. Just 10 pushups–working on form and consistency in area that I am weak and 55 squats. Slow and steady is the name of the game. Still working on winning at the challenge of waking up at the same time every morning. I keep going back to sleep! I filled myself with lots of barbecue which what the holiday is for! Happy Labor Day!

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Time to RESET!

Time to RESET!

It’s September! Not only does this month have 30 days, the perfect interval for any type of challenge, fitness or otherwise. It starts on a Sunday making for a calendar friendly progression as we take on the month.

The theme for my September is SEIZE THE DAY! I’m rebooting, resetting and re-calibrating all over my life. I commit to 30 days of fitness in September, doing something great for my body every day. That looks like Bikram class at least 3 times a week, squats every day, crunches and pushups on alternating days, a delicious smoothie daily as well as delicious homecooked food every day and waking up at the same time every day no matter when I go to bed.

So far, I took Bikram class which was glorious after a hiatus of over a month. I renewed my soul at church this morning, long over due. I took care of myself by getting all the supplies to help me accomplish my goals this month.

What is your theme for September?

The Dissection of Justice – Thoughts on Trayvon

ImageAs someone who recently buried a loved one, I have come to terms with a certain truth (at least to me): the dead are at peace, it is those who are left behind who are tormented until they address the unfinished business involving the dead.

I am calm, clear and resolved.  What might cause a jury of peers to determine that justice was irrelevant?  Maybe it was the listless, lackadaisical, asinine, presumptuous, lazy, uninspired prosecution’s failure to deliver a convincing case even for manslaughter.  All they had to prove was that the individual committed an act that caused the death of another individual.  No intent.  No layers of history.  Just “Did this person kill someone?”.

Which brings us to a mitigating factor for manslaughter: provocation, where it can be proven that the party who was killed somehow engaged in behavior that caused the other to harm them.  Did this person do something that caused the other to engage with lethal force?

Apparently, while many of us were in tune with absurdity of not considering that someone who was rightfully walking home from the store, at night, in a place where he was a welcome guest, and was followed by an unknown, menacing man, might find himself baffled at first, then terrified when this man unlawfully engages him in combat without provocation, there seem to be many others who are not.  Envision this: you’re minding your business walking down the street and a creepy person who is obviously not the police approaches you, you may run or you may fight.  You may be appalled that this is even happening.  Who is this and why me?  And you fight.  And you die.  But it is because you fight that this individual can say he killed you out of fear of his life–the very life he endangered by inserting himself aggressively into yours.

All of this is open to interpretation.  It was the prosecution’s job to fine tune and shape this interpretation–to hammer it into the jury and out of each and every witness.  Yet, it seems, that even the prosecution didn’t have the heart for it from the very beginning.  Might it have been some feedback loop of believing the case wasn’t winnable and therefore not bothering to attempt to make it so?  Or maybe it was something more insidious like the prosecution connecting more with the aggressor than the victim?  That might account for countless opportunities to prove that all that could be done to win was done were so carelessly–almost handily–and summarily discarded: 1. Jury selection 2. Witness preparation 3. Cross examination 4. Failure to paint the accused as the menace he was at least to the person who died even if he was not considered that in his community and countless other slippages.

The prosecution may not have cared.  They may not have tried.  They may have been altogether to sympathetic to the accused’s plight considering that they are called to defend the same actions when they are attributed to the police.  They may not have had it in them.  The ball was never dropped.  It was allow to roll away and deflate in a corner.

But yes, back to unfinished business.  The dead are free or at least no longer concerned about what is here.  Those who are a left behind are charged with tying the loose ends of the dead or face torment when they are unable.

These are the loose ends that keep are currently keeping me away:

  1. May Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin mitigate the loss of their child and the disregard of the prosecution and, ultimately, the justice system with a wrongful death suit that will deprive the man who blotted out their son’s light of the money he has amassed through his infamy.  May he find no peace in any corner and may restitution haunt his soul requiring a balance he will endeavor to but can never repay.  May the parents of one lost so suddenly and unceremoniously extract every single ounce of what each and every one of those days that led up to 17 years might have been worth.  May they avail themselves of passionate, compassionate, brilliant, indomitable counsel that will be the gladiators for justice that they were not afforded in the criminal case.  May they comfort themselves with an accounting of who their son could have been and see it reflected by the one that took that life as his spends his life paying for that life.
  2. May you stop–even in the midst of your sadness–wistfully and smugly comforting yourself with statements that you knew this was going to happen because things are so unjust when it comes to matters of the brown in the US.  Being resigned to hopelessness breeds hopelessness.  It also makes you believe you are doing something when you are doing nothing but sighing into the wind when you could actually change the direction of the wind.
  3. May the anger, sorrow, hurt disappointment for those affected by the end of this chapter be a lesson that grows into transformation.  We are not helpless.  Our fear of helplessness, after it stops choking us, leads to complacency brought on by the resignation that things will never change.  Your boldest weapon is hope.  Your boldest charge is to think and act in ways that will change the shape of existence.  May you be up for it.
  4. May we have the compassion to understand that others do not see what we see and have victory in this ending.  Vengeance is not yours nor does it bring back the dead.  It is a frenzy that knows no end or satisfaction.  May you be gracious knowing hate causes only you to suffer.  May you find solace in the way you reshaped the world for innocents.  May you stand your ground.