Feeling: JUST ME
Yesterday was the day off. Ideals of a sleep in were obliterated with a 5am alarm of clanging cows outside my window, and when resleep evaded I decided the way to go was to lie in bed and watch some Coro.
So some little wee yarns, observances and threads that sometimes weave into something more, and sometimes are left a’flying.
1. I love how yoga here is focused on the self beneath the surface. Unlike Western approaches or exercises like Pilates, which are (not absolutely always, but more often than not usually) primarily talking about toning your arms or leaning your legs, the yoga here is about lengthening your muscles, opening your joints and sending energy to places of stagnation. It’s not about the aesthetic appearance, but rather the health and happiness of what goes on beneath the skin.
2. Martinet told us she had booked in to go to the dentist for some hard graft fixes. I was thinking about her at 6pm (her appointment time) and before I really thought it through I flicked her a quick email saying I hoped it went well, and if afterwards she was unable to eat, the cafe down the road and round the corner did dairy-free avocado “shakes”.
As soon as it vamooshed into my sent items, I groaned out loud to myself. What a fucking suck up, I tutted. What an absolute ning nong.
But then I thought about it. Did I email her in a bid for some brownie scoring? Was that where the motivation stemmed from? Or was it purely an act of kindness, a well wish so she knew someone did care?
It is with complete clarity I can say it was the latter.
I explored this thread a bit more thoroughly. My actions, like getting a present for translator Irene on her birthday, telling my mate Monita she could practise her teaching on me, giving my sequence to Maria to embed it in her homework because she was struggling; it’s not from a selfish place. I like helping people, making people happy, alleviating their apprehensions and nerves whichever way I can. Even though I always harbour the notion there’s a rather noteworthy element of self-service in there (I.e., I gave the homeless man 100rupees and now I feel good and generous), for the most part I really do feel warmth to others and want to have them feel contented and cared about.
And from Martinet’s response (INSANELY friendly toned for her) I could just tell she was just a little bit touched (well, as much as a detached-French-cum-Vietnamese-cum-Chinese-higher-Tantric-practitioner could be).
(Ok, I’ll admit saying that if tomorrow in the break if Martinet felt awful and needed rest that I would go and fetch her some more juice was a little lick arsey). (To clarify the above: Sabina had been to the dentist the day before).
And suddenly it struck me as I was lying in bed later: I truly want to do everything – no matter in relation to whom or what – with kind intentions.
2. The day off saw me head up to the yoga school to do a Hatha class (which upon seeing my mate Manoj, had me invited to his sister’s pre-wedding festivities next week and given a lift home on his scooter) and meet up with the girls for breakfast. Plans were being made for the rest of the day, when I had an utter certain realisation: I wanted to spend the day with myself.
So I did.
A very long roam about all the next-door-neighbouring villages, a trip to the big post office to send a parcel NZ bound (still no improvement on the speed of service aspect) and then to a cafe for lunch to eat some veges as I read my book, and I was in a sense of real peace. Aside from a FaceTime with my best bud Melissa in England, I didn’t talk to anyone but myself (well, aside from the PO porter, the cafe men, the convenience store fellas and everyone I said hi to as I tripped along). It gave me a real opportunity to explore a few aspects of my own nature and be somewhat introspective, and I felt really, really good.
3. Now 24 days in, I can feel my spine and hips grinding into the ground with some asanas. But rather than experience the frisson of deep satisfaction of the past on having indicators that I’m losing weight, there is a wave of joussiance and felicity, which fades into thinking it’s actually a bit of a nuisance. (Lifting up into a bow when your hip bones crunch on the floor hurts).
Can it be that leaning out doesn’t quite hold the same magic?
I’ve been thinking about ED lots here; not in the he-consumes-me-and-tells-me-what-to-do-all-the-time way, but in a detached, I’m-sort-of-gaining-the-upper-hand light. I’ve realised in life, you can’t garner straight up the mountain – you’ve got to head for the smaller hills first, and upon hurdling over them with gained ease, look to the higher peaks.
My aim of getting completely over ED is too high right now. I need to go for a lesser gradient. And I’ve figured my way forward, a hope that isn’t so huge that I could absolutely fail, but is big enough to be a massive milestone.
I want to stop being a hindrance. If I go to someone’s house for dinner, I want to be able to eat what they’re having. Such as when I go to Hawke’s Bay where The Pedaller’s parents are; how much happier would it be if I could help myself to half a crumbed sausage once every six months or so? When I’m doing my week-to-week thing I can continue with my clean eating, vegan-ish consumption (because I truly believe I feel better in that eating, ED or not) but when in social situations, I would love to not be the one who doesn’t down dairy and has to have a separate plate prepared.
4. Every morning in kriya-slash-pranayama we do this thing where we retain breath either inside or outside our bodies and then contract and release our anal sphincter. The first time we were instructed to do so, I had to stifle my (very immature) giggles when Martinet said “work with your anus”. But now, its become so routine to me that I don’t even flinch.
I close my eyes and clench then unclench my bum hole as I hold my breath with no reservations. Whoever would’ve thought?
5. The other night Irene (Chinese girl I gave a b’day bag to) came to my room and slipped me a little package. “This is for your birthday,” she said. “It’s like an elixir from Hong Kong, and at the airport I had to line up for an hour to get two bottles.”
I was greatly touched she had bestowed such a valuable gift on me. Thinking it to be some magical potion to activate the chi in my body, I applied it liberally to multiple pressure points.
I must have brushed my face before washing my hands however. Within four minutes, every part of my bod I had kneaded it into was alive and in alarm – by cripes this shit was hot! And my forehead was alight with the prickling of HP when Voldemort is around, burning like petroleum and a matchstick had met upon my head.
In the morning I woke up and headed upstairs. As per, I didn’t look in the mirror before I went (I can go three days without glimpsing myself here) and upon nestling myself onto my meditation cushion one of the girls asked what was wrong with my forehead.
I kid you not – a big, red, penis-shaped splodge had lodged itself pretty much from one temple to another. It couldn’t have looked more like a ballsack and schlong if I had purposely drawn it to be such.
Three hours later when class finished I hustled to take a photo, but my knob-head-ness had faded into nothingness.
Talk about being dicked around.
6. Yesterday morning I opened my lappy to do some admin. Although the keypad lit up, the screen would not rouse, even after a plug in to the charger and setting aside to breathe for an hour.
I went downstairs to show the hotel manager man (he’s my Godsend to go to for Sellotape, staples, printing and rehanging-of-my-fallen-curtain-rod). He had a play around but could not get it going. “Leave it for a few hours and hopefully it’ll work then. Otherwise, I’ll sort out a guy for you tomorrow.” (To clarify: in the computer-fix sense, not some sort of Hindi husband).
Upon reaching home after my mammoth walk, the lappy was still not arising.
I was amazed.
Not because my computer had copped out on me, no. But by my response. Usually in such a situation, I would be flying around in a flustered frenzy. I would be panicking and bleeting and calling to all and sundry to be of aid. Especially as when I finish this course, I have three weeks set aside to finish my book. But in this instance, I was collected and calm and cool and all other similar words starting with C.
What will be will be, I told myself. Then had a literal laugh aloud at the fact I truly meant it.
And this morning when I awoke and the log in page lit up, I had a small little smile to myself.
I. Have. Changed.
Is this really you, Anneke Poppy Rose Whatman-Wortman?
7. And last night I wasn’t feeling anything much. Not happy, not sad, not frazzled or nervous or stressed. I just was; content and placid, not a worry in the world. My trio shot me a message to go out for dinner, but I didn’t really feel like food. I was going to see a friend from my first time in India, but I didn’t really feel like speaking. I just felt like being on my own, in my space, as I was.
So that’s how I came to be in bed with a banana (both a real one and my soft toy) (can I just clarify here; this is in no way an alludication to some sort of dildo) at 7.30pm on a Wednesday night, feet thoroughly washed and sesame-oiled and Committed (Lizzy G’s sequel to my much-loved EPL) being page-turned in my palms.
(Completely not in line but I have to address this here: Lizzy G writes about an interracial couple who married in Virginia in 1958; police broke into their house as they slept and arrested them for engaging in matrimony as different-coloured races. In the following court case, the judge ruled, “Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, Malay and red, and He placed them on separate continents. The fact that He separated the races shows that He did not intend for the races to mix”. What an ugly way of looking at the world).
And I came across a lovely quote, uttered by Lizzy G’s friend’s G-Pa. (Follow that?). “Sometimes life too hard to be alone and sometimes life is too good to be alone.”
I totally agree. Life is meant to be shared with those you love.
But sometimes? Alone moments can be absolutely lovely.