58. Body Wisdom

My morning has gotten away from me but I am determined to check in. I want to account for both months, but please don’t feel obliged to read everything.

 

MAY

From our last w2k meeting through most of May I slipped into an emotional vortex. My crying during our meeting was just the beginning. Karen’s visit stirred up intense emotions for me and rekindled the feelings of fear, sadness and abandonment I felt when John walked out. The following day I learned that Olivia’s 10-year-old body gave out after fighting cancer for three years. Although she was cancer free at the time, she caught an infection and died rapidly. I came to know Olivia through her father’s letters; and as the child I dreamt of when I dreamt I drove off the cliff, she had become my symbolic muse. A few days after learning about Olivia, I heard from my oldest friend that her daughter’s degenerative illness had stopped responding to the chemotherapy and steroid treatment she’d been taking. My friend is making the difficult decision to give her child  a brand new adult drug—a risky, but last option. I trapped two feral cats and had to put one down. I put one of my chickens down as well, unable to help her. The chicken was the last straw; my emotional reserves depleted. Depressed and anxious, I stopped going to yoga and got little work done. Not a good scenario for me.

 

MAY + JUNE

Fortunately, Laura sent around a suggestion that we all read Fast Company’s issue titled: Change or Die. Opportune timing. I read the issue and began to reflect on what areas in my life I most want to change.

 

EXERCISE

Exercise effects EVERYTHING: my relationships, my confidence, my effectiveness in my work, my mental and emotional health, my energy, my financial confidence, my sex drive … EVERYTHING! I asked myself why I can’t stick with it consistently when I know how vital it is to my emotional balance as well as my physical health. Taken with the line that it’s easier to make radical changes than incremental changes, I decided to switch from afternoon yoga, which too easily gets re-prioritized for something else, and begin going to 6:30 am yoga DAILY. The hitch: I can’t drag myself out of bed before 7–7:30 to save my life. I’ve been trying. I’m simply too tired. It had been awhile since I’d given up coffee, including decaf, but I was drinking green and black tea in moderation. I decided to give up all caffeine. Surprisingly, I still went through a serious withdrawal process—but worth it. I now wake every morning at 5:30 without an alarm and my anxiety has abated dramatically. I am no longer experiencing continual shortness of breath, which is my hallmark.

 

I have layered in power walking and I am keeping a calendar of my exercise. This is week four of doing something every day. I haven’t shed a pound, but I feel great.