Monday, January 12, 2009

a peaceful day.

Last night I had grand visions of waking, eating a light breakfast, reading a bit, and then going to walk on the elliptical machine before doing a yoga class. I set my alarm for 7:20 am, but I didn’t wake up until 10 am. Figures. I was tempted to keep sleeping. But, “No! No!” some voice inside of me. I got up. Dressed. Fed the dogs. Brushed my teeth and washed my face, and I made it to the yoga class at the YMCA. Gentle Yoga. Last night, after reading the descriptions of the zillion yoga classes offered at my new Y, I felt like this might be the one for me.

I was probably the youngest person in the class. But the instructor, a smallish Indian man, about 55 years old, taught with such a soothing and grounded quality, that I just fell in, no angst or discomfort. He kept reminding us, “Focus less on your body movements and more on your breathing.” During the full body relaxation at the end, I wiggled my toes: Relax little toes. Rotated my ankles: Relax ankles. And on and on until my favorite part comes when you relax your back, let if sink into the floor like it is part of the earth. At least, that is what I visualize, that my whole body is connected to a plane of moist soil. Laying there, eyes closed, I could see green and yellow splotches of light turning beneath my eyelids.

It was the closest simulation I've experienced of my days with Miriam Srinivasan – a tiny, fit and energetic 60-something German woman who taught yoga at my high school. She is no longer living, which surprises me, because I always thought she'd live well into her 90s, if not beyond. “Oh, Erpret,” she had declared at the end of my second year taking yoga with her, “you are not very limber.” And so it still is. My body is not a limber body.

I still plan to train for a triathlon, and I don't want to forget my running skills. But I’ve got it in my head that this year, if I focus primarily on yoga and swimming, I can loosen my muscles and become not only more fit, but also more flexible, less stressed out, more energized and more productive. We shall see.

When I left the Y (which I am madly in love with – it is a billion times nicer than my YMCA in BR), I walked outside and the beauty of the day struck me. Crisp. Peaceful. I turned off the radio. Drove in silence. I didn’t check my cell phone for calls or my email for mail. At home, I greeted my dogs. Let them out into the backyard. Opened some mail. Showered. Fixed something to eat.

While I ate, I caught up on my blog reading – which is a funny thing, because not too long ago I didn’t read a single blog. I poured a cup of coffee, and I kept reading. It is a perfect day. Perfectly quiet. Perfectly blue sky outside. My mind perfectly still.

Later, I’ll read the novel I’m hoping to finish tonight, and I’ll work on short story revisions. This is the day I’ve been waiting to give myself since I returned from vacation. I’m not mad at myself for sleeping later than I’d planned to, but I’m going to work on rising earlier tomorrow. I hope to spend the whole week storing up energy and returning to a schedule, a routine - I don't feel that I really had a routine last semester, and I don't function well without one.

I hope I won’t see a single soul except my husband and dogs for these last days before I head into the new semester.

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