Sweet Ache

After 44 days of my 101-day Bikram yoga challenge, I’m pretty sure I’m a crazy person. I had a solid class with Britney this morning. I signed in the next class and the puttered around doing my workstudy duties. The moment I realized that I truly need help was watching students come down the stairs after class, glowing from sweat and looking like they were floating. Right then and there I wanted to run back into that room to take another class.

Am I addicted? Not sure. Bikram class feels like you’re running a marathon with Snow White and the Seven Dwarves tap dancing and singing “Heigh-Ho” all over my chest, heart and spine. It takes everything in me not to curl up in a ball in a corner and pretend I’m in a sauna instead doing those postures. I may have difficulty with postures but I never sit out a set. I try to do each asana every time for as long as I can. When I fall out, I get back–except for standing forehead to knee where when I fall out I argue with myself about what the heck am I doing with my life and this whole Bikram thing.

At end of class I’m dishrag still soaked after it went through the ringer…and I love it. I think I do this yoga for the euphoria after you experience after taking your body to struggles it normally would never experience. You’re body aches like it’s just had a deep tissue massage and all tension has been released. It leaves you floating. I like that feeling and would gladly do another class to experience it. Thankfully, I have 57 more days to chase that sweet, sweet ache.

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All of it

Today was a seemingly impossible day.  I’d bitten off more than I could chew and I wasn’t willing to let go of anything.  In my mind, nothing is impossible.  While it was an ambitious day, it was not an undoable day.

I’d recruited my movie fiend friend to see Dark Knight Rises on IMAX.  The only problem when we purchased the tickets in June was that the only real IMAX theater in NYC–Loews Lincoln Square–had no available IMAX shows except 6:30am on Saturday morning.  If we were going to go full movie die-hard, we’d have to be in the theater by 5:30am which meant waking up by 4:30am.  A bit crazy, but not bad, right?

Well, today also happened to be the day of my studio’s posture clinic.  They recommended that we take the 11am class to warm up, do the clinic from 1-4pm, and take class at 4:30pm to apply what we’d learned in the clinic.  Seven hours of yoga is challenging.  Add a 4:30 am wakeup call to that and it goes from challenging to daunting.  Oh and add a 1:30am bedtime after volunteering Brooklyn–a recipe for thwarted expectations.

Fortunately, I was able to wake up, do the movies, all day yoga and make it home in one piece.  I’m grateful for all the elements that allowed me accomplish all of it.  Because of a communication breakdown, I almost did not get to take the 11am class.  Thanks to someone’s graciousness, I was able to take class twice and complete the clinic  in spite of the snafu.

Dark Knight Rises was absolutely worth the early wake-up call.  After some confusion, it took longer than usual to get my mind focused on my first class.  When I did, I breezed right through it.  The posture clinic was amazing.  We didn’t just go over proper execution of each asana.  We had a medical doctor describe, in detail, the actual medical benefits of each posture.  As a emergency room doctor committed to preventive medicine, she stressed how doing the Bikram series keeps us out of her hospital–a wonderful thing.  We also went over the chakras and corresponding beneficial herbs.  That was 3 well-spent hours.  I can’t wait for part 2.

Class after was tough but I was able to push through.  As I finally rest my tired body, I hope I can see some major improvements as a direct result of the clinic.  60 more days–2 whole months–until the end of my challenge.  Not that long, is it?

Gratitude Day 30

On the last day of 30 Days of Tessism I am overwhelmed with gratitude for ALL OF IT!!!

Gratitude:  I am grateful for making it all the way through another November of blogging every day for 3o days.  Whew!   I made it!  It was great looking at gratitude each day this month.  It kept focused and grounded.  Gratitude beats back all the things that plague my life: frustration, upset, you name it.

There is so much that I am grateful for and 30 days does not come near to relaying it all.  I have a charmed life and these 30 reminded me of the blessings I sometimes take for granted.

Gratitude creates that amazing life.  Without it I would never stop and appreciate all the wonderful people and experiences that make up every day.  Thank you for following me on this journey each and every day!  See you next year!

Challenge Day 29

Day 29 of 30 Days of Tessism is bristling with gratitude for the unforeseen.

Gratitude:  Today I am grateful that the power and internet outages I’ve constantly faced during my stay in Nigeria did not prevent me from blogging every day for the past 29 days.  I am grateful that disaster was barred and I did what I needed to do each time to get each entry out.  This is my second year of blogging every day in November and it’s been quite a journey!  See you tomorrow for the finale!

Gratitude Day 28

Day 28 of 30 Days of Tessism brings gratitude from the other side of the screen.

Gratitude:  Today I am taken aback by how grateful I am for YOU.  The fact that you are reading this and have been for so long makes such a difference for me.  Without you, I would have no fuel to continue.  Your comments and encouragement keep going through power and internet outages in Nigeria to make sure I post something each and every day.  This would pointless without you.  Thank you for reading every day.  Thank you for caring to comment and email.  Thank you for providing the fire for this engine to go all the way!

Gratitude Day 27

Day 27 of 30 Days of Tessism discovers gratitude right under it’s nose!

Gratitude:  I sifted through my hard drive of thousands of pictures over the past few years and realized that I have a great life.  I am grateful for the past years of adventure, love and wonder thanks to the amazing people surrounding me.  I have had so much fun with so many friends doing anything our hearts desire.  It has been a privilege to blaze trails with the beloved people in my life.  I am grateful for the blast my life has been and continues to be.  I wouldn’t change it for a thing!

Gratitude Day 26

Day 26 of 30 Days of Tessism leaves gratitude for what delights the eye.

Gratitude: I am grateful today for the majesty and awesome beauty of Nigeria. I still cannot believe I am here. After years of tales of Africa’s beauty, I am here to witness it. There are trees like nothing I have seen before. There are endless stretches of green land and red clay. I am grateful to see this with my adult eyes that can appreciate them in this lifetime. It is incredible.

Gratitude Day 25

Day 25 of 30 Days of Tessism brings gratitude very different from last year.

Gratitude:  Today, I am grateful to be in a warm place in November.  No snow.  No coat.  Just warm and sun here in Nigeria.  I never expected to be here but here I am.  I miss New  York but the warmth and new adventure is great consolation.  I am grateful for something I did not plan which gives me a reprieve from the norm.  I am grateful for the sun that blots out the storm.

Gratitude Day 24

Day 24 of 30 Days of Tessism finds gratitude in simplicity.

Gratitude:  Today is the beginning of the last 7 days o f 30 Days of Tessism.  I am grateful that I’ve made it this far in the challenge another year in.  I am grateful for the pleasure of every day.  I am grateful for this life.  It is all I have and it is more than enough.  Take time today to look at the simple pleasures that make your life worth living.  Look at the people you love.  For all of it, give thanks.  I know I am.  HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Gratitude Day 23

Day 23 of 30 Days of Tessism finds gratitude amidst chaos.

Gratitude:  Today, I am grateful for the peace I find no matter what storm falls upon me.  Somewhere, there will be quiet and an end to the confusion.  Then new roads, new paths will open up for me.  New possibilities never before imagined become available because of those tribulations.

From the rain comes new life and something more magnificent than what was there before.  This happens time and again.

I am grateful that while in life, troubles may be a constant, victory is constant too.