Monday, September 27, 2004

A new day, a new pain. Such is the life of a graying ashtangi. The mid line sacral soreness of the last week or so has resolved completely, for now (last phrase thrown in to appease the gods). In my last two classes, I have been able to back bend with relative impunity, with nary a twinge of discomfort. However, (such an ugly foreboding word is however) I now have a brand spanking new ouchie to feed my morbid imagination. As I began to lay forward into Kurmasana yesterday, I felt an unusual tightness in the area of my right low back and along the rear edge of my pelvic brim. I did the pose and the rest of that practice without any real discomfort or stiffening, but I was a little more sore later on and more so today. I thought initially I may have strained the quadratus muscle, but the way it feels today, I'm thinking more along the lines of problems in the Sacroiliac joint/ligament. It doesn't feel bad. It feels far less limiting than what I was complaining about last week. That doesn't mean it couldn't become more of a chronic thing, it just doesn't feel too threatening yet. Tomorrow's a moon day, a good opportunity to rest it, but we'll see how it feels.

Funny, our teacher occasionally will enlighten us with various tidbits about upcoming astrological events. Before class on Sunday, he mentioned that Mars and Jupiter were forming one of those conjunction things in which two or more visible heavenly body appear to cluster close together in the night sky. The bodies in play this time included Mars and Jupiter. So, he told us we might expect a practice marked by "fortunate action", since Mars is the planet associated with action and Jupiter is associated with fortune. He did go on to warn that we should use caution so as not to overdo things, as irrational exuberance might also arise with such a combination. I hate it when he tells us stuff like that. I've never given astrology much more than a sniff of disdain, but I swear, whenever he tells us about a given day having potentially negative implications, I get all nervous about getting hurt. One day he told us about Mars and Saturn coming together, the little malefic and the big malefic. Major badness looming. I was almost neurotic in my caution that day. I think I even walked my feet back to chaturanga rather than jump back. Yesterday, I didn't really think about what he had said about the planets until afterwards while I was in Savasana. I don't think I was being unusually exuberant when it happened. In fact, I was in my usual slacker mode, just settling down into the pose as he was getting to the second count or so.

As for the other "unfortunate action" from that practice, those weren't real farts coming from me. They were mat farts. You know what I mean. You're laying there on your back and your sweaty body sort of forms a seal with the mat. As you move into a different position, air that has become trapped under your redundant body folds gets pressed out , generating the loud, greasy, post-frijole kind of noise that causes everyone to overtly not look at you out of embarrassment. I did that Sunday class without a shirt, since I had forgotten to throw a tanktop in the trunk when I left for work the night before. Without a shirt, my body was sweatier than usual and seemed to glue to the mat whenever I lay down or rolled back into some inverted pose. I think people around me figured out that they weren't real when it happened three or four times in a row. I hope they figured it out. They weren't farts. Honest! I don't fart in class. Just once. That was it. Years ago.

I also seem to have resurrected my blog jinx. In one of my recent entries, I mentioned that I had had a good twisting and binding day. Yesterday, though, I was barely getting to mid-palm on some of my Marichyasanas, even the ones that I have been able to bind my wrist on for some time now.

But, I did have a really good back bending day (away damn jinx). My arms felt really straight and I was trying pretty hard to shift my weight as far out over my shoulders as I could. When I did my stand up (just one, I wasn't trying to be greedy), my feet never budged. No shift of the toes out to the side. No steps back or forward for balance. Came right up. Simple and sweet, just like those gumby girls do all the time.

Today I was scheduled to assist a partner in the OR all day, but her last two cases got cancelled. We finished the only case by 10:30 so I called my clinic schedulers and told them I was going to take the afternoon off. I then scooted back up north and went to the noon First series prep class. I got there about 45 minutes early but the studio door was unlocked. There was somebody there that was just finishing their practice. She let me come in and do some stretching before my class started. I was back in cautious exploration mode. Standing in the OR that morning had made my low back even stiffer than it had felt when I got up this morning. This was low back tightness that impacted twisting and, to a lesser degree, forward bending more than back bending. The poses that felt the edgiest were Ardha Baddha Padma Paschimottanasana and Marichyasana C. Janu A didn't feel too bad at all, which I thought it would if the discomfort were to be due to SI joint issues. Who knows what I really did. Hopefully it will become as moot as last week's twinge.

Last night we watched that show where they completely rebuild someone's home for them. My kids and wife love these makeover shows. This was the season opener and it was a two hour show about a guy who lives about three miles from us. He is a recent widower, his wife died four years ago. He has eight kids and the nine of them all lived in a tiny three bedroom, one bathroom home. It was a very emotional show. The local community really came together to help the show bring the thing off. They scraped the house and rebuilt a huge (4600 sq ft) new home in just seven days. The contractor who did the building, an acquaintance of the family from church or something, had never even built a home before. His business was commercial construction: building banks and mini-malls and stuff. It was just amazing how great a job they all did, the people from the show, the contractors and builders, the volunteers, the neighbors. If you get a chance to see it or tape it, I'd recommend it. Not that often that you get to see such pure, honest goodness.

Full moon tomorrow. Maybe this time I'll heed the astrological warnings and avoid practice. Maybe. We'll see how it feels tomorrow. Besides, the kids and I have to shop for a present for my lovely wife. Her birthday is on Wednesday. How old is she? Old enough to bring her shins to her head and her head to her feet.

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