Gimme Some Cheese, Please

Magnificent practices yesterday and today. It was soooo nice to get back to my regular solo practice after completing the first three days of teacher training. And my body feels great after its breakdown last week. I'm feeling strong, supple, and balanced. The first couple of days of training were rough. The third day was better, but my conviction was shaken slightly. I worried I had made a mistake... I've been thinking about it for the past couple of days, and I've decided to just go with the flow.

I will listen to their theories about meridians and balancing polarities, and energetic healings by the waving of a skillful hand over the afflicted person's heart chakra *sigh* and I will be respectful. I will hear any evidence that is offered to me, but I will not oooh and aahh at what seem to me at times to be attention grabbing antics. Granted, I am a die-hard skeptic regarding all things mystical, so that door has already been closed for some time -- it's a bit stuck. We'll see if the folks from APY can grease those hinges and get that bad boy to open up.

Anyway, great practices yesterday and today. I'm so addicted to my personal practice I actually began to worry from those few days away from it that it would just fall apart. On the contrary, I'm finding myself really polishing things up, thinking more about doing things the right way instead of just doing things my way. I've gotten a lot of correction on the positioning of my shoulders, which are always tense, and the width of my stance in many poses. I tend to splay my legs when I jump back to chaturanga, so I move through a very wide legged vinyasa and come into a correspondingly wide legged downward dog, which feels good to me but is apparently not acceptable. "Hip's width apart" isn't as far as I thought it was.

I had a good handstand practice today after a not-so-good one yesterday. Five handstands, holding each for at least a few breaths. I had some very good balancing moments in there -- four full breaths with a clean exit on one attempt. It's getting easier, though finding my balance initially without the wall is still not happening very often... or at all, really. Sometimes I think I've got it, but I seem to reach for the wall to get a sense for my position in space out of habit. It's very frustrating, or it would be if I were attached to the outcome of my efforts or anything like that... which I'm not. Ahem.

I can say that my headstand practice has come a long way. I'm spending 25 breaths in sirsana A, then 5 breaths in sirsana B (legs parallel to the floor) near the end of almost every practice, barring days when the neck is feeling funny. I haven't used the wall in a good while, though I still practice my supported headstand near enough to the wall to prevent rollover if necessary. Makes for a more comfortable experience, since I'm there for five minutes or so. I'm also enjoying coming into a tripod headstand from prasarita padottanasana during my standing practice from time to time. It feels nice on the hips to bring the legs out and up and five breaths does wonders to refresh the legs at this point in the practice.

The next installment of teacher training begins this Friday, and I'm looking forward to seeing how the program progresses. I'm also looking forward to being able to eat cheese and butter again. I think I had dreams of baby swiss and sharp cheddar dancing around on little gourmet crackers last night. Mmmm... just you wait, my lovelies... three more days.

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