Saturday, August 28, 2010


Freewrite Exercise: What have you lost?

I have lost flexibility. I'm sitting in my desk chair with my left leg stretched out in front of me, resting on a second chair, because the hamstring is tight and the sciatic nerve is twanging all the way down to my ankle. It's been irritated since my yoga practice yesterday morning. Guess I did too much down dog or something.
The yoga is important, though. It may be the most important thing I do. Lately I've felt like the area from shoulders to hips is becoming a solid block of immobility. It's painful to bend, even worse to try to get back up. This stiffness is the result of the after-effects of back surgery, the fear that I'll move wrong and blow the disk again, and a heavy helping of just getting old. The expression, "set in your ways" is starting to feel very familiar.
That expression implies a level of complicity on the part of the accused. "She's set in her ways" suggests that she has a routine that she's comfortable with and that she's not motivated to change. Speaking as "she", I'd like to suggest there may be more to it than that. If there are ways that I'm set in, likely they're the result of choices from the past catching up with me. Any lack of flexibility now has as much to do with the needs of husband and kids and work dictating my actions as it does with any age-related mental fixedness. I simply can't get up and do whatever I want.
For the most part that's ok, although at times I feel sad for the girl I was, who didn't know what she had when she had it. I hope that age has given me the wisdom to appreciate this moment in time before it passes. While the yoga practice stretches the body, it teaches patience with limits, and as the body maintains a level of flexibility, so too will the mind stay open to new ideas. My routine might not change, but I hope my ideas do.