IndiGlow - The Ordinary Illuminated

IndiGlow - The Ordinary Illuminated

Finding My Center After the Storm

Saturday, September 07, 2013

I'm watching Turkey Buzzards circling over my backyard as I sit and work in my office on this peaceful Saturday morning.  Through the other window I see an intricate spider web attached to the eaves of the roof swaying in the gentle breeze.  My 3 children have spent the morning playing, disagreeing, making-up, and playing some more.  There is such peace and fullness in my heart/mind at this moment.  I'm reminded of the word purnam, or "perfection," which, in this context, does not mean what we might think.  I am full...I am whole...I am perfectly content in my spirit as I observe the fluctuations of the world around me.   


After the longest Winter of my life (which bled into the Spring and even early Summer), I am refreshed to find the ground beneath my feet again.  It felt like a metaphorical hurricane swept through my life and left me completely demolished internally.  

After a month of testing in January, my son was diagnosed with High Functioning Autism.  While I had suspected this for the 5 years prior to his diagnosis, there was still a part of me wishing they would tell me I was wrong on that emotional day.  

The day before I drove to Chicago for this news, I learned that my father was diagnosed with another form of cancer (he had beat Prostate Cancer years before).  My relationship with my Dad has not been a close one, and so I was left with a mixture of feelings, including grief and fear.  

It was a hell-of-a week, and I took a few days to try to assimilate all of this news.  And then...that following Friday as I was waiting in the pick-up line at school I received a terrifying call from my mother.  She was having a stroke!  I spent the next week in and out of the hospital with her...trading shifts with my brother as we worried what would happen next.  Once released, she came to live with me for a few weeks so I could care for her, which included sorting out all of her new meds, helping her learn to give herself insulin shots 4 times a day (for her out of control diabetes), cooking heart-healthy meals, and more.  I was happy to do it, but I felt the weight of the world on my shoulders.

By the grace of God, her stroke did not leave her completely handicapped.  While it certainly affected her, with time & rehab she regained most of her speech, balance, and abilities.  It was life-changing for her (and for all of us who love her), and she made incredible lifestyle changes in an effort to avoid another stroke.


Now, months later, we're all doing pretty damn well!  My father & I have become closer than we've been in years, and his cancer is under control at the moment.  My mother lives independently with a helper now who comes twice a week, and she continues to be stronger everyday.  My son, well...of course there is no cure for Autism, but we've been able to get him a 504 at school, which means he is protected for the rest of his educational days.  I've finally been able to talk to him about his diagnosis, and together we are learning how to navigate this unique path God has blessed us with. 


Everyday there are new challenges to face, but this is the nature of human existence for all of us.  For everyone of us life is going to be full of heartache, scary moments, and metaphorical hurricanes that make us feel defeated.  But, the beauty is that there are also moments of deep joy, moments to celebrate, and remarkable miracles which build us up again.  All moments pass, change, ebb & flow.  

I'm eternally grateful for the skills my yoga practice has given me.  Because of these tools I am able to find my center...remember to breathe...and accept that I am not in control of the world around me, but I can control how I react to it.  With a very glad and grateful heart, I am thankful for this moment.  


Namaste

<3 IndigoGrrl

"Buildings and bridges are made to bend...

Tuesday, January 29, 2013
in the wind, to withstand the world that's what it takes.
All that steel and stone
is no match for the air, my friend
what doesn't bend breaks
what doesn't bend breaks...."

Ok, so you might not call it "current," but I still love this Ani DiFranco song from her 1994 album, "Out of Range."  You can listen to the rest of it here on YouTube, but I wish there was a good live performance to share.

What I love about this Righteous Babe is that she's been a champion of speaking her truth.  She's challenged conformity and embraced who she is.  Much of her music is political, but my favorite tunes are the personal songs that pull at my soul and push me to really look at those feelings.  She doesn't hide or shirk or become a prisoner to forum.  And now...she's a mommy, like me.  Suddenly she's all the more relatable.  

I needed to hear her song today...to remind myself that even the strongest & tallest structures are made to bend in the wind.  To withstand the world it really is what it takes.

Peace,
IndigoGrrl

I haven't felt the Earth move

Monday, January 28, 2013
under my feet nearly enough this winter.  I spent so much time and effort building up a running practice last year from April all the way until the end of November.  I even ran my first races...two different 5k's which I found to be exhilarating experiences! 
 
It wasn't easy...I never was a runner and could never get past that first mile.  I started with alternating 3 minutes of jogging with several minutes of walking early last Spring.  It wasn't pretty, but I'd make myself go for 45-minutes...even though I couldn't run half of that at the time.  
I just kept at it...and then I got the best advice yet on how to approach my cardio, "The first 5 minutes are going to suck.  Know that & do whatever you can to make it fun,"  advised my friend who frequents our Wellness Studios who is also a doctor (Dr. Margaret Millar).  She encouraged me to keep at it...to get past those first 5-10 minutes, and to make it FUN!  
Hello, technology!  It hadn't occurred to me before, but once she filled me in on these simple pointers I loaded my iPhone with all kinds of crazy club music (which I don't normally listen to at ALL), invested in some good supportive shoes from the experts at Running Wild, and accepted the "suck" of the first 5 minutes.  And then...magic!  I love the stress-relief and weight-management that comes from a dedicated practice.  It doesn't hurt a bit that it makes my husband notice my legs.
  
But, OH MY GOD it has been a crazy winter.  December hit and those running shoes haven't been on my feet once (well, maybe a couple of times but it wasn't to actually RUN, sadly.)  I can't even blame the weather...especially since I love the cold & snow!  Between purchasing a 2nd business, battling the flu season with 3 kids, the holidays, and a mile-long list that even bores ME (so I'll spare YOU), this mama has lost her steam (and found her beer belly.)

Well, guess what?  Screw YOU crazy/busy schedule!  I'm getting my ass back in the saddle..er, running tights and I'm going to burn off that stress.  It's gonna suck for more than a minute, but not nearly as badly as it sucks to feel defeated & pudgy.  Help me out, Carole King...mama's finding her groove today!

Happy trails, friends!
~IndigoGrrl



Yes, Mother...my tree IS still up.

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Thanks for noticing :/


While we're on the subject, it's January 9th and I still have gifts left to wrap and give.  It seems the many heavy & big things I'm juggling at the moment have caused a few details (details that I am 'normally' quite on-top of) to fall right off my priority list.  Ker-PLUNK!

And guess what?  It's OK!  The world is still turning, and I'm managing the big & heavy things in my life pretty well...even if that darn tree is still up.


PS:  Don't hate on my mom...she's awesome in so many ways.  Maybe not so much in the "I just had a long & emotionally-draining day & I need you to just smile and hug me" way, but awesome in her own special ways.


Peace on Earth, Good Will toward...moms?  Yes.  Even in January.

~IndigoGrrl




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