Sunday

The Cop was very late this morning, due to a fatal hit and run accident. The dogs and I hung out. For a moment there, Tyler even fell asleep next to Maxine. Usually he spends all of his time nipping at her and tormenting her.

Got a couple of pictures of them — amazing how quickly Tyler is growing. When we got him three weeks ago, he weighed 9.5 pounds. Today, 18.5. If he keeps up this pace, he’ll weigh 126 on his first birthday. Kidding. He’ll top out around 100.

At noon, I decided to make a special treat for myself: broccoli, sauteed slowly until burnt. Mmmmm.

Tyler, who loves the kitchen, is always super attentive when I’m cooking. Here’s a picture of what I see whenever I am at the stove. If he gets tired of waiting, he lies down. ON my foot.

Practice was catch as catch can. It’s hard to practice with a crazed dog having fits nearby. If I could let him into the space with me, he wouldn’t howl and moan. But surely it’d be hard to keep my driste as he bit my hair and nipped my triceps. I assume he will calm down someday. In the meantime, I’m grateful for the shala option. I can get over there Monday-Wednesday, and Friday. Sunday and Thursday practices will have to be more improvisational.

Actually, I have a week coming up (week after next) where I am actually scheduled for meetings at 7 and 7:30 AM Monday through Thursday. Ones I can’t ditch. Ones with attendees from outside the company who will be hearing about some new strategic initiatives. *sigh*

I have to take some time to figure out how I am going to handle this. Get up at 3 AM to practice? Not out of the question, and I’ve done it before — the only catch is that I’ll probably have to sleep in the guest bedroom and do my practice there. If I’m not on the other side of the house, Tyler will hear me and insist upon getting up and starting his morning routine of FOOD and POOPING and CAVORTING! No way am I going to be down with that at 3 AM.

Other options include leaving work early and practicing in the afternoon. Still, though, there’s the CAVORTING dog issue.

I’ll need to spend some time coordinating with The Cop and figure it out…

Home alone

I worry about what he’s up to when I go to the shala. The Cop works night shift, so between the time I leave for practice and The Cop arrives home, there is a half hour when poor Tyler is all alone.

I’ve been so worried that he is depressed without us.

So I decided to capture the depth of his sadness on a secret video.

Pictures from this week

Man and dog, crashed

Man and dog, crashed (Director’s cut)

What’s he eating?

Something he carried off from the kitchen

Heavy head on the coffee table

More Piriformis

Achy right piriformis when I got up. Took ibuprofen with my coffee — at least I think I did. That was my intent, but who knows, what with chasing Tyler around and making sure he did all of his business outside, etc. He definitely takes the relaxation out of mornings. 🙂

Today is Muscle Man’s Mysore morning. Six or so of us. Nice and warm. Been feeling super-strong in practice the past couple of days, and today kept the streak going. Muscle Man talked to me about keeping my feet crossed behind my head throughout the “up” from supta kurmasana. I usually uncross them as I come up, rather than keeping them crossed until I am all the way up. I have a little fear of getting stuck, I think. A little claustrophobia. Once things like this are pointed out, though, it’s easy enough to just brave through and fix them.

Got to baddha konasana and felt kind of scared. Set up slowly, then moved into the forward bend. Hey! No resistance! A little pain, but great range of motion. Usually it takes a little easing to get myself to the floor, but this morning it was one exhale all the way to the floor. Yes, I could feel some pain, but nothing I couldn’t consciously relax. Until, suddenly, there was a “twang” — what felt like a handful of stretched muscle fibers suddenly letting go. With a split second of weird sensation that might or might not have been significant pain. I popped up quickly, out of some kind of intuition. Or maybe just fear. Hard to say. Moved into baddha konasana B without any fanfare. Seems like everything is fine. I guess that was an opening.

At work now, and time for some peppermint tea and more ibuprofen. Feel some ache and a little instability when I walk, but I think that’s just things opening up.

***

Walking out of the studio at the same time as one of the guys who’d been practicing. “What a way to start the day, huh?” he said, clearly happy. “Yes!” I agreed. Perhaps a little community is starting to form…

Richard Freeman speaks, My own dogma, Piriformis

I fell behind in listening to Richard Freeman’s talks. Finally slowed down enough yesterday to download and listen to “The Myth of Technique.” (Scroll to the bottom of the page to find the download.) Well worth a listen. And (note to Sanskrit Scholar) he chants — and translates — and interprets! — the chant you taught us: the one that starts with sahana vavatu. And hey, SS, thanks for teaching me that Sanskrit is phonetic! Means I can spell, at least, even if not pronounce… 😉

I’ve always wanted to study with RF. Not really sure why — the zen connection, maybe. Anyhow, studying with him is one of my few Ashtanga ambitions. I distinguish, here, between ambitions and “notions,” or “enthusiasms.” I have lots of energy and some means, so it’s easy for me to act quickly on notions that catch my fancy.

On the other hand, I tend to have lots of patience with ambitions. I like to watch them unfold. Notions are things that pop into my head — things that capture my imagination. Things that appeal to the Karen of “The Karen Show.” Things that I’m not particularly surprised to find in my suitcase.

Ambitions, on the other hand, evolve. They intimate themselves, rather than popping up like jack-in-the-boxes. They have lots of psychic traction before they even become conscious. And they’re way bigger than “I” am.

I will remember, though, as Owl suggests, not to take RF to induce heedlessness. Like they say in the precepts. Or DO they???

***

I have been thinking about my practice of vegetarianism and dogma. ‘Nuff said for now.

***

This morning’s practice was terrrrrrrrific. I’ve had a spate of painful, sluggish, tough-to-motivate practices since returning from the Matthew Sweeney workshop. What’s that, about a month of not-so-nice practices? Those are hard spells, for sure.

Today, though, strong and happy and focused. I was nervous at baddha konasana when The Archangel moved in for an adjustment. I pointed at my right hip and said, “piriformis,” wondering if he’d just skip the whole thing. Nope. He did a usual adjustment, with the added detail of his knee sunk into the piriformis, which was astonishingly good. Kinda reminiscent of Candice-the-Massage-Therapist thumb magic.

In the changing room afterwards, I was putting on makeup when a blond woman entered and smiled at me. I smiled back, happy, and went back to my makeup.

As I was leaving, I picked up my stuff and said, “See you! Have a good day.”

“It was really nice practicing next to you today,” she said.

It was really nice practicing next to you, too — even though I didn’t know it was you, I was tempted to say, but left it at, “Yeah, it was a good practice day today, wasn’t it?”

Sunday Tyler pics

It’s hard to get pictures of Tyler. He’s always running around and shaking his head and rolling around all over the place. So I tried video, but he flies around all over the place, and the frenetic video footage would probably induce seizures in viewers.

We’ll go with pictures for today.

Will I manage to post this before he wakes…?

Fluctuating Mind has a really nice blogroll that I like to catch up on when I have a few moments.

Today’s been a weird day, energywise. Last night, Maxine (the old dog) was restless and paced around, asking to be let out every hour or so. Which woke Tyler, who then wanted to go out, and then wanted to cry when returned to his crate. So we were all up pretty much all night.

Morning rolls around and The Cop gets home from night shift, Maxine goes to sleep for the day with him, and Tyler swings wildly between utter mania and deep unconsciousness. Any time he keels over, I can get something done. And when he is awake, there are some things I can accomplish that actually hold his attention. So far, I’ve completed a presentation for a conference session (during sleep time), cleaned half of the house (during wake time — he’s scared of the dry mop, mildly amused by the broom, and thrown into fits of joyous attack mode by the feather duster), and managed to do a little reading (some during sleep time and some stolen moments during wake time).

During one of his naps, I lay down on his mat with him and fell asleep. It reminded me of when My Gift was a baby. I was so captive to her schedule that I threw myself into sleep whenever she did — just so I could keep up.

Currently work is a madhouse because we have a number of major projects all happening at once, and, most importantly, my right-hand colleague, confidant, and friend is out on maternity leave. Gah! I’m loving interim-managing the design team in her absence, after a good spell of doing primarily strategy stuff, but damn, humans suck up a lot of energy! I’m happy to give it, but need to keep adjusting my own levels so I can stay balanced…

And at home, there’s Tyler — adorable black hole sucking up endless energy. All of this adds up to a revised kind of life for me. I realize how simple my life can be — I get up at exactly the same time every day, do the same practice, head to the office at the same time. Both The Cop and I love peaceful routine.

Things are a little different right now, though. Which is fine.

And all of this brings me back, in a roundabout way, to Fluctuating Mind’s blogroll, where I read a couple of posts that are just perfect for today.

How do you practice when no one’s watching?

How do you practice when you have other responsibilities?