It’s been a big month. I’ve been in and out of my house more than I can remember. Between my trips and his job, Sam and I are in a haze of gratitude for the time we do get to spend together. Kiddo turned 21 this month, which seems both absolutely natural and utterly impossible. Where did my sweet little mop- headed monkey go? While we are at it, how did it take so long for the world to acknowledge she’s an adult? TIME JUST DOESN’T MAKE ANY SENSE. Oh, and hey, Rhinebeck happened, too.
I’ve been spending a lot of time reflecting, journaling, sketching, blank knitting, any sort of meditation I can get my head into while everything is happening. My physical practice is so scattered lately; mostly a few daily sun salutations followed by whichever poses I’m working on at the moment. (A lot of upper back and arm balance work lately, but I’ve been doing some interesting things with hip openers, too. I have ideas about splits, and that’s new, I’ve always kind of dreaded them previously.)
I feel as though I should be doing more yoga as we move through all this stress: for alignment, to keep limber, to work out knots before they happen, to keep my massage therapists from needing to do more work than they ought— all of that. It’s an issue of time, always. I work on my posture, try to be mindful of body mechanics and hope that’s enough, instead. I’m getting better at self- care, certainly, but still wouldn’t say I’m awesome at this stuff. When do we ever prioritize ourselves, or our own bodies, enough? And then we expect ourselves to be able to take care of our homes, our families, our friends and our lives like superheroes. Hm.
Yeah, I know. And I can hear a select few of my friends telling me things I never want to hear. I’m writing it down, I know the right things. It’s a learning process.
Along that vein, though, I think I did something good for myself today. I hope so, at least! I’ll know for sure by tomorrow morning. For the last few weeks, I’ve noticed this lovely shift in things. When I work in Fells Point, I frequently need to use metered parking, which means sprinting to the meter to pop my card in, add funds, and then jogging back to my job. Parking tickets in the posher bits of the city are no joke, folks- I think my last ticket in Federal Hill was about $32, give or take, and I just missed that by about 6 minutes.
Here’s the thing; it’s been maybe 3 years since my last real run; I gave it up after the relapse before my meds switch, the one where my left leg didn’t work correctly. The fear of a fall was just too much, especially at speed. Gilenya has been going so well, though, and my neuro PT & yoga have me in a really good place with balance- I think I’m better off than most people, unless I’m having a bad day. Working on it offsets both the disease and age, which is nice- I would never have thought of that without MS. Small, un- thought- of benefits. It’s those tiny things, you know?
Anyway. Those sprints to the meter have felt good. Really, really good. The weather has been just right, too; those grey, cool- but- not- cold fall days. I got to thinking about how much I missed my runs, so I pulled out my shoes this afternoon and gave my old route a go. I didn’t aim for the full 5 to 6 miles- that would be begging for an injury- but instead ran my old 2 mile warm- up, which seemed about right. It felt so familiar, like falling into an old pattern, with that sweet flying feeling once my muscles opened.
I know that running isn’t for everyone. It isn’t for every body! It can be brutal on knees, hips, and backs. I love it, though, when my body will allow it. For me, there’s a magic to running: timing my breaths to the pad pad pad of my feet, the single- mindedness of the action, the way it clears the head. Much like meditation, archery, sex, and yoga, running has a way of silencing the outside world and bringing me directly into the present moment: there is nothing but this, here, and now.
I’ll spend the evening carefully stretching, to be safe, but I think I’m pretty all right after my teeny run. I’ll admit, I wasn’t completely sure about it, but I’ve been feeling better than I have in a very, very long time, and I’ve been hoping this might be possible again. I’ll give it a few days before I try it it another time, but this was my day- before- my- birthday present to myself, and if this is how I come into almost- 40, that’s really great by me. Thanks a lot, feet. You’re pretty rad.
Complete subject change: let’s talk yarn. You all have some GOOD IDEAS, folks. And I have GOOD YARN. Let’s trade.
Jody, we are running with your idea first, which means two things— first, please send me an email, I’m sending you some yarn! The OTHER thing that this means is that for the next yarn giveaway we have a new set of rules, and you’ve written them.
Jody’s suggestion really grabbed me; I’ve been thinking a lot about kindnesses, love, and compassion lately. Here’s what she suggested: “What if everyone wrote about a kindness they’d done or that was done to them? The news is so full of bad things -let’s hear about good things!”
I AM INTO IT. Here’s what I’d like- in the comments, please share TWO THINGS: the last random kindness that was done for you, and the last kindness you saw done for someone else (it counts if you were the doer!) I’ll choose the winner late next week and send them yaaaaarrrrrnnnns, winner pays shipping.
Be kind to yourselves in the meantime, Gentle Readers. I’m working on remembering that I’m no good to the people I love if I’m not taking care of myself, which means I’m reminding everyone I care about to do that, too. So hey, remember that self care stuff, okay? Good good.