Sunday, October 23, 2016

The Sunday Wrap-up . . .

I once again find myself at a liminal place in my life.

It's time to shift - to move forward - except I don't know yet which way to go to get there.  It would seem clear that you'd go forward to get forward - except it's just not that easy for me - and it never has been.

These life shifts have been happening for me much more in the past 10 years or so.  Probably since the time I first retreated with Joan Anderson. It's why her writings have been so important to me - that ability I've been honing all these years to remain on what I've always called The Path to Myself was given form when I retreated with her the first time to the Isle of Iona in 2007.  I knew before then that I was often trying to get back to "me," but learning from her and being mentored by her  helped me have a clearer vision of what "me" actually looks like.

And here I am . . . Time has come around again in its circular fashion, and I find myself in the middle of both external and internal forces working at cross purposes. I am chafing at things holding me in place while at the same time falling into old, unproductive patterns.  It's like I need to drop the coat I've been wearing - the baggage I've been carrying - whatever has been holding me back, and walk through the door into what's coming . . .

. . . if only I could find the damn door.

It's both good and not so good:
  • I'm finding myself divesting things again (good - great, actually)
  • I'm saying no to things (very good)
  • I'm not singing anywhere (not so good)
  • I'm using food to try to tame the chaos (super sucky and it never works, by the way - not ever)
  • I'm looking at everything in my life and deciding if it's best for me (very good)
  • My energy is all over the place (not so good)
  • I'm not focused (not good)
  • I've been released from formal PT but I still have to do it at home (good - and irritating)
  • I sleep but I'm never truly rested (not good - and really irritating)
  • I'm practicing self-observation without judgment (super good - but this is a new one for me and I'm finding it to be a bit . . . um . . . challenging)
I'm in that place of not knowing, and it's making me crazy.

Tai Chi is helping.

Writing would help . . . if I could get myself to sit down and do it.

Cooking healthy meals would help . . . if I could get myself to plan.

Piping is still always there in the background and I cannot even tell you how much I miss it, but I don't seem able yet to pick them back up and start playing.  And the fact that I can't yet is very telling for me because somehow I'm meant to be a piper.

So I leave that here on the page (it's not going away - I will be moving forward.  Patience has never been one of my best virtues although I do have it) and move on to other things.  :-)

Yesterday I spent 6 hours on yard work.  Thankfully I had some help for part of that time from a couple of my cousins.  Today I'm achy - but I'm sure I would have been achier had I not soaked in the tub in an Epsom salt bath last night.  And today I need to see if I can find mulch.  And I have fluorescent lights to take to the big box store - they will recycle them.  One of the tubes fell over and shattered in my garage yesterday.  It's really time to get this stuff taken care of.

There has been some yarn work happening here, as well.  I have a Father Time Cowl on the needles in some beautiful Fishknits yarn.  That's the link to the Fishknits new site - currently under construction.

The yarn is the Panache base in the Country Rose colorway.  I like it a lot  :-)

The other thing that I picked back up in the last couple of weeks is one of my continuous strand looms.  I can get two dish cloths out of one ball of Sugar 'N Cream yarn.  They are woven on the bias, and you use yarn that will shrink a bit.  The one of the left is how it comes off the loom, and the one on the right is what it looks like after a wash in hot water and being dried in the dryer.

 Here's a closer look at the looseness of the fabric initially, and how it snugs up after a wash/dry.

I actually much prefer these to the hand knitted dish cloths that I've knitted forever.  Of course I do still knit them - the knitted ones are a great size and are great for babies - two of my younger cousins use them for baby baths all the time.  But these woven ones are smaller and lighter - and I find them much easier to use in the kitchen.  They are a quick project, too  :-)  These were made with the Countryside colorway.  It's perfect for my cousin ME's kitchen.  I'm going to give these to her and see if she like them better than the knitted ones.

On the book front - I'm still listening to book 5 in the Outlander series, The Fiery Cross.  I did finish The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing.  I started a book that was not on The Unfinished Book List - it's Aruni Nan Futuronsky's Not Over Yet: Simple Strategies to Struggle Less and Savor More.  Here is what Amazon says about it:
"Aruni Nan Futuronsky is back with her signature blend of delicious humor and deep wisdom. In her third book, Aruni turns her attention to the ever-unfolding present. Whether she is worshipping with the Quakers, grieving with her wife, or walking in the woods with Zac and Lucy, her furry teacher-guides, every day brings with it a new opportunity to practice.

In twelve chapters that are part memoir, part interactive workbook, Aruni invites her readers-softly, gently-to create their own practice of love, breath, and surrender. Each chapter is a gift, an opportunity to feel, relax, and let the feelings move through us. Not Over Yet is a roadmap to the sanctity of mindfulness, the blossoming of heart, and the ultimate freedom of opening ourselves to all that is yet to come."
It's an interactive book, in that each chapter has questions and prompts at the end for you to work on in your own life.  I've chosen to read it through in its entirety first, and then I'm going to work through it one chapter at a time.  It's not long - 12 chapters, and I think I'm on chapter 7.  What will take time, is going back and doing a chapter a week to then working on the questions at the end.  Pretty sure this is going to help me focus  :-)

In other news of the week - The Cubs are going to the World Series!!!  The Dodgers had a great season, but I'm thinking that this might really be the Cubs' year  :-)   The City is on fire with Cubs fever, that's for sure.

I've registered for two back-to-back classes at Kripalu in the new year.  I'm really looking forward to them and to returning to Kripalu again, and will talk more about them in the months to come.  Again, more ways for me to take care of myself.

I'm also registered for an Aqua Destress class at my health club.  First is a workshop next Saturday, and then Monday nights in November for the 4-class series.  I'm really looking forward to it.  I so love to be in the water.  Here's the class description:
"This four class series will build upon relaxation techniques learned in the Stress Relief in the Water Workshop.  The class will take place in the warm water therapy pool and includes breath work, gentle stretches, and meditation techniques. Join  . . . certified Aqua Kriya Yoga instructor to experience a gentle and supportive environment where you can learn to relax.  You can apply these techniques in and out of the water to improve your life and overall well-being."
I'd never heard of Aqua Kriya Yoga before - it sounds wonderful and I'm really looking forward to it.  The more something is made accessible for people of all abilities, the better I think it is  :-) 

And of course, I'm still doing Tai Chi - and loving it more and more every class - and although I've always enjoyed my classmates, they all seem to have fallen by the wayside.  That means that it's me and the Sensei - I get private instruction when no one else shows up and I'm learning better and faster because we can stop right away when I have a question or body/arm/foot/hand placement issue. 

I am so lucky . . .


Michelle said...

Listening to you fills me with thoughts and prayers for you, my friend....

A :-) said...

Thanks :-) It's just part of the plan . . .