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Occupying Your Body

Having gone to every doctor to have every pain checked out, I finally was comfortable with reengaging in some true working out at the YMCA. I have been taking a weight-lifting class to tone up my belly as well as my upper body. And I have noticed an interesting shift in how I feel inside my body.

When I stopped running and was going through getting my aches taken care of, the pains made me scared. I feared what it meant or how bad it was, and that sort of thing makes you avoid doing things that would cause any more pain. Problem with that is that the pounds pile on an immobile butt quickly. And the extra weight just causes more problems.

After knowing I wasn’t going to hurt myself anymore, I began to commit to many reps but low weights. My muscles began to tone up. Whereas before I was moving my body mass around avoiding the pain, I now occupy my body and can feel it moving. I am holding myself strong and tall and proudly.

If I am stuck with this body for the rest of my life, there are a few things that I want to make sure I can do for the duration. Stand tall, squat over a toilet, and not pee my pants. Each of these endeavors requires certain exercises that very quickly create the strong body you want. I feel like we should all be proud of ourselves for the way we take care of us. And this will keep us happy and independent just that much longer.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Oh Universe, What Would You Have Me Do?

We mistrust ourselves so much, we have to hand much of our decision making over to another power. We create elaborate ways to make decisions. Drop a divining line down and see which way it swings to decide (dowsing pendulum). Pick your arm up and drop it to see if you should eat it (applied kinesiology). Because it’s awfully hard admitting that you have no faith in your own decisions and easier to give it over to something else. The exception being God. But most of us are faithless and frenetic.

The Drowning man story is the best story ever which humorlessly depicts how our lack of sight and faith keeps us from seeing the divine signs sent to us.

A fellow was stuck on his rooftop in a flood. He was praying to God for help.

Soon a man in a rowboat came by and the fellow shouted to the man on the roof, “Jump in, I can save you.”

The stranded fellow shouted back, “No, it’s OK, I’m praying to God and he is going to save me.”

So the rowboat went on.

Then a motorboat came by. “The fellow in the motorboat shouted, “Jump in, I can save you.”

To this the stranded man said, “No thanks, I’m praying to God and he is going to save me. I have faith.”

So the motorboat went on.

Then a helicopter came by and the pilot shouted down, “Grab this rope and I will lift you to safety.”

To this the stranded man again replied, “No thanks, I’m praying to God and he is going to save me. I have faith.”

So the helicopter reluctantly flew away.

Soon the water rose above the rooftop and the man drowned. He went to Heaven. He finally got his chance to discuss this whole situation with God, at which point he exclaimed, “I had faith in you but you didn’t save me, you let me drown. I don’t understand why!”

To this God replied, “I sent you a rowboat and a motorboat and a helicopter, what more did you expect?”

We are given so much and yet our brains don’t see what we’ve got but rather focus on what we don’t have.

Meditation and yoga are ways to reach our larger calmer parental minds, the voices we could trust to make decisions for us. But these processes are not a “one time and done” kinda thing. They require discipline and time and pain. Modern Americans have no time for any of these. And in essence, were not really worth it.Oh Universe, What Would You Have Me Do?

The beautiful thing about being young is that you are told what to do. You resent every little syllable you had to obey but when you find yourself without the direction, you may end up asking the Universe what it may want of you? And it may be super hard to find that first answer. But that is where I am right now.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

What 2018 Taught Me

I felt like I was making great strides in growing myself last year, 2018. I was feeling more sure of what my creativity was giving me both personally and perhaps professionally. I offered up a Wholehearted Living piece to a writer friend’s blog. And I started to create my own theory on the inverse relationship of creativity and anxiety. I felt a rhythm was coming.

And then I suffered an anxiety setback that set me reeling. I abandoned my aspirations and hunkered down to ride out the storm. And I took myself to the doctor’s and asked for medicinal help. Because pain is your body telling you that it needs help.What 2018 Taught Me on Shalavee.com

Why had I waited so long, I asked the doctor. He said “Stigma”. I had made it my goal trying to prove that anxiety can be conquered by therapy and creativity. And I was admitting I was wrong. I felt defeated and yet, once I had the medication cooking, I felt the hope of perhaps finally moving from a stuck place. And 9 months later, I was right. I have grieved my ego loss and moved on to what was beyond. Possibilities don’t feel like burdens of tasks I’m unable to do but rather hopes for a fun future.

Last year taught me that you have to do whatever it takes to take care of yourself. You have to ask for help and sometimes, give up and do something different. And you are the only one who can make the best decisions for you. Even if those decisions are hard to make. Because I think the hardest part of making a decision is making the decision. After that it’s just following through and seeing what happens next.What 2018 Taught Me on Shalavee.com

My wish for 2018 for myself was for perspective, safety, joy, inspiration, value, chances, strength, hope, and comfort. And “to live within my creative zone often enough to keep me joyful, true to myself, and to be able to appreciate this action and the interaction with my fellow people who know the truth of me.” I’d say that I fulfilled most of those intentions and then some last year. I feel creatively satiated and held by a growing community and I am trusting that I will take care of me in the coming years.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Creativity Couldn’t Cure Me

Back in November, I had what I’ve referred to as an emotional fallout. It was like an anxiety caused implosion which caused me a couple days of waiting and watching the grief I was experiencing. I consequently took myself to my doctor and asked for some anti-anxiety meds. While these were exactly what I’d needed for a very long time, this also caused me a new wave of grief for admitting to a failure to “fix” myself without them. Creativity couldn’t cure me.

I am a devoted self-development practitioner. I have been chasing a better more confident version of myself since my teens. I have peeled back layer upon layer in order to understand myself. And last year, I was devoted to developing a theory about how creativity can be used to battle and quell the anxiety monster.

Creativity Couldn't Cure Me on Shalavee.com

I wanted this to be the outright answer to all of it. I wanted Creativity to be my savior, my answer, my magic potion. I hosted creativity challenges and participated in them and every time, I felt my soul grow. So when the first anxiety episode happened after giving a speech on the inverse relationship of anxiety and creativity, and then again after I held a workshop on creativity, I was devastated. I was an impostor.

I grieved for what felt like giving up and giving in. I wasn’t so much worried about the stigma of taking the medication as much as I was worried my theory had lost it’s wind, it’s proof in me. Like saying yes to medication was disproving all that I had worked on. And I was also sad that I hadn’t made this choice so much earlier because the relief that it gave me was astounding. No more underlying anxiety buzz in my brain means that I can carry out and finish more wonderful creative projects.

Creativity Couldn't Cure Me on Shalavee.com

But now I think I am done grieving and I am moving into a less all or nothing zone and more of “whatever works” zone. I say do it all and keep doing whatever works. Happiness is all it’s cracked up to be and there will never be a disadvantage to being creative. It brings you joy when you permit yourself to give into it.

I’m not sure what my all or nothing attitude was supposed to get me. I can tell you that I am now engaging in another type of therapy called EMDR to dig specifically into why these episodes happened and how I can learn from them instead of feeling ashamed of them. And I am certain I won’t have another one again as long as I am on this medication.

Anxiety is a sucky way to live and your wellness plans are up to you. Yes you can tell stories about yourself but make sure that you are authoring them and that you work very hard to give them happy endings!

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

My Body Temple

I recently committed to attending as many classes at the Y as I could. I remembered seeing a woman I knew once and she’d lost all sorts of weight and looked great. I asked what she’d done. She said she’d…gone to as many exercise classes as she could. Here’s what I wrote in my journal in January (it has taken me 6 months).

“I talk about being a part of a community but I don’t join in the exercise classes at the YMCA. My brain says, ‘But what if I can’t keep up with it. ‘ But we show up for all sorts of stuff all the time for kids and others. We can certainly keep showing up for ourselves in whatever fashion we ask of ourselves. Hello 100 Day Project’ “.

I had to take care of myself first and stop all the pains. I had a bunch of shots in my butt for my SI joint and then two rounds in my right shoulder for my rotator cuff. And then I had to sit and wait for the pain that was no longer there to return.

My body temple on Shalavee.com
Fashion goals and this beautiful woman, New Orleans Floral Designer Sara Perez Ekanger

I once read one of Nigella Lawson’s cookbooks in which she said the best way to lose weight was to regard you body as a temple. To respect and revere it and treat it as if it were holy. I can remember being at the Y and feeling embarrassed by my body. But now? I’m tending to my temple, they’re templing over there on the treadmill and they’re templing in the cycling class. We are all there for the same reason.

Plus it struck me that in the weight training class I was in this week, all of the women and one man in the class including the instructor and myself were all carrying extra weight. I felt like we were all in our temple efforts together. And when I couldn’t do the belly dance wiggle in the “Booty Call” dance class today, I began to giggle and the two older guys in the back started to laugh. Just keep swimming !

The only way to move from where you are is to accept where you are. Compassion is your truest friend when you feel as stuck as I have for these past 7 months. I am on day two of operation body temple. I watched the young women in the front of the class watch themselves and feel proud of their moves while I had a hard time looking at myself in the mirror. I want to remember what it’s like to feel proud inside my body again. Pride and not Shame.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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