Sunday, January 26, 2014

Practice Teach

Ehrmegerd... It's been over a MONTH since my last post here? Pardon my French, but WTF have I been doing?

Well, let's see.

I was sick as a dog over the holidays. I came down with whatever truly horrible creeping upper respiratory crud was going around, and wound up spending the first 3 hours of Christmas morning (between midnight and 3 am) sitting on the couch, fighting a painful, spastic cough that left my sick and with a throbbing headache for most of Christmas Day. (But I did have enough energy to watch Colden open his presents and get my butt over to Oma and Opa's house for appetizers, more presents, and dinner.)

Then we had this ice storm... Truly bizarre. You drove ten minutes in either direction from our house, and it was like nothing had happened. But here in the valley? Ice on everything. Colden got down on his butt and used it like a sled all the way down the gently sloping hill in the backyard. That lasted for a while, and it was a bugger to get in and out of the driveway, the house, etc., when the entire world was a solid sheet of ice.

Then New Year's came, and we all went back to work and school - until a couple of bad storms resulted in Colden's first official snow day. (That kid was so excited to have school canceled, because, and I quote, it meant he got to stay home with me all day.)

My daily practice kinda sagged for about three weeks there. I mean, I couldn't take a breath without breaking down into a hacking, spastic cough. My lungs felt like they were on bloody fire for a good two weeks. That's no way to keep up a vigorous practice.

I did some restorative stuff during that time, mainly just to let my body rest and heal on its own.

But, then, the second weekend in January, we were back at teacher training, and back into the swing of things!

And now, us teacher trainees are embarking upon our practice teach classes.

I had my first one this past Friday, at 6:30 p.m., at the studio in Keene. And of course, I woke up that morning with - what else? - a freaking chest cold.

No worries! I must have guzzled a gallon of hot tea that day, and just for good measure, I whipped up an enormous pot of kitchari and munched on it all day. (Kitchari is a traditional Ayurvedic food, supposed to be very healing, that consists of basmati rice, mung beans, lots of spices like turmeric, ginger, cumin, cinnamon, and coriander.)

So, I walked in to the studio with my little asana cards and my book on mudras (which is another fascinating subject for future blogs) and my mat, and I was ready to go!

My heart was positively racing when I started class. For a moment, I thought about checking my pulse to make sure I wasn't going to drop dead right there in front of the four students. But, no. I said to myself, not now, and moved on.

I led the class in a slow, flowing, meditative class, and ended in a restorative, supported savasana, complete with eye pillows, bolsters, and blankets.

And you know what I discovered?

An incredible sense of peace.

No, I wasn't one of the people lying in the supported pose with the blankets and bolsters and eye pillows. I was sitting up there, gently guiding them with my voice, into a place of meditation, relaxation and peace.

It was an entirely new sensation for me. A new feeling.

I've never really thought of myself as someone who could bring peace, or as someone who could soothe. To be honest, I've always sort of felt like someone who's better at screwing things up and causing chaos than as someone who can bring relaxation and comfort.

But this? This was totally different. And awesome.

And I bloody well can't wait to do it again!!!

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