10 August 2009

yoga. matt damon. and chocolate cake.

u be u. day two.

hello again. thank you so much for the u be u, i'll be me week feedback. it feels so nice to belong to such a thoughtful and supportive community. hopefully it's a good journey to juice the creativity and just be more real. so here we go, a recap. if i were being my usual blogging self i would feel apologetic for the length of this one. but since this week is an experiment of sorts, anything goes.

saturday, early morning yoga class. even jotted in my planner. i haven't been in weeks due to travel, and sheer laziness, so i was excited to give it a go. all over again.

as fate would have it, i show up on power yoga day. oh goodie, yoga with weights and core work. if tammy weren't so darn charismatic and adorable, i would have rolled my eyes and said this isn't true yoga and stormed out. but i was there and already had my shoes off. plus i'd scored a killer parking spot. am not one for wasting a good parking spot. tammy explained that our workout today would have an emphasis on stamina and flexibility and strength. oh fabulous. just when i was congratulating myself for showing up. life is all about putting me back in my place.

it's interesting to me that the moment i begin doing exercises to strengthen my body, i feel so weak. and all the other moments of life like driving in my car and going for walks and posting a blog and buying groceries, i'm not even thinking of my body's strength versus weakness. i'm just being me. and thinking i'm fine. then i get to yoga, power yoga, and i feel like a weakling among warriors.

enthused miss instructor says to listen to my own body, to go at my own pace, to believe in myself, to listen to my breath. to find my breath. i like yoga because of this seemingly-selfish type of tuning in. someone is actually instructing me to breathe. to listen to myself. to follow my own body as a guide. to quiet my mind. but it's almost impossible for me in a saturday morning yoga class to not run through my list of to do's during meditation. i realize this is a very sad fact. and i'm working on it. it's interesting that we've come so far as a society yet we still have to go to a class to be taught how to listen to ourselves, to trust our bodies. shouldn't this come naturally? shouldn't deep breathing be instinctive? shouldn't we know how to fill our lungs like we did when we were babies?

as i've said before, my cousin teaches yoga. whitney just graduated (hooray..) and teaches yoga at the university (and is an incredible resource for me to call and ask, why am i so bad at doing chaturanga?). she is petite and beautiful and bendy and tiny and fashionable and also my best friend. therefore, the perfect person to envy. she once gave me good advice about attending yoga class, "You cannot compare yourself to others, your body is made up completely different than anyone else's. We each have strengths that someone else does not. Yoga poses vary in difficulty for each person. Every body handles them different." once she told me this, i understood completely. you cannot judge yourself so harshly. you can just do your best. lesson one. listen to yourself. follow your instincts. do not follow the crowd. go with the flow. tune in and tune out.

so saturday started off feeling good. feeling strong for surviving class. like i said, i had plans for our day. as i always do. i had big plans to get everything on my list done + done. i always seem to set myself up. the house, spit spot. the family, happy. the laundry, folded. fitness goals, rocked. the date night, fabulous. cooking, shopping, errands. check check check. yes, my saturday plans often have a way of running away with the spoon. plus, there was a giant rubber duck race (just imagine, thousands of li'l yellow duckies bobbing down the rapids) down the snake river which we planned to take benji to.

but when i came home from class, my benji boy was burning up with a fever. hot as a spicy li'l pepper. and lazy as a pup who has played all day in the sun. he just laid in my arms without wiggling to be free. this was more than disconcerting. my active laughing baby was only in the mood to cuddle and be held all the live long day. dan and i were in a frenzy, finding toys and finger puppets to cheer him up. not much more than a smile; our tiny one was sick.

so, just like that, all the day's must-do's were put on the back burner. in fact, they were shoved completely off the stove. rolling behind it, where the plugs collect dust. where my mother-in-law probably wipes down every four months. my plans were out the window. and suddenly i didn't care one bit. suddenly i realized all that real important stuff i had planned was not actually important. what was important was making my boy content.

after leaving the doctor's office with a case of nothing-too-serious, my boys (the big one and the small one) plopped in the rocker with jason bourne in the dvd player. benji dozed in his daddy's arms, a long time favorite spot, and i hustled about like nurse nancy. when i realized there was nothing more for me to do, i found myself dicing the ginormous zucchini we'd acquired and whipping it into cake batter. (at church when dan told the old farmer, who wears overalls and a smiley dimple, who'd originally given us the mammoth zucchini beast, that i'd diced it into a chocolate cake, i feared he'd give me a well deserved, sharp reprimand about how to treat his glorious vegetables. i braced myself. thankfully his eyes lit up. i quickly promised to share a slice.) yep, me and my yoga fit self were baking a chocolatey sinful cake and ignoring my silly long list. see, flexibility is my middle name.

when you strip away all the stuff, there is just simplicity and sweetness. it was exactly what the doctor ordered. lesson two. let life run on. let the ducks do their race. chocolate cake does not bake itself. hold your babies before they grow too big. eat your vegetables.



i made hilary's recipe
for chocolate zucchini cake.
and it's oh so good.

am happy to report the fever has broke and mr. benj has plenty of energy. right now he's chit chatting to me while on his tiptoes reaching for the remote controls. oh, it's good to see him back at work.

11 comments:

hannah said...

i'm just getting ready to do a little yoga myself. while doing yoga, i often find myself laughing at my awkwardness and getting frustrated at my inflexibility. i'm going to take your advice to heart this morning and just concentrate on my own body and mind.

country girl said...

it's true, you can plan all you want but often life has other things in store for you. great that you rolled with the punches and just accepted that plans had changed. cake sounds delicious, i'm getting in that waiting-on-autumn, wanna-bake-and-be-cozy mood, too. hope benji is feeling better!

EliseBlaha said...

thanks lady,
welcome back.

Cat said...

Love this post. Never too long! I can just imagine the farmer; how could he not love zucc-chocolate cake???

Katie - My Paisley Apron said...

So true about not judging yourself too harshly. I try to remind myself of that all the time, in yoga and everywhere. ... Poor sick baby. I'm always so sad for my kiddo when he's sick, and always wish he were a little more cuddly when he is! (And not just at 2am)! :)

brooke said...

These are my favorite posts of yours. So glad the Benji bear is back to his busy self.

Dansie Family said...

i went to kickboxing for the first time in a while and shared a bag with a 4.5 month pregnant friend. I was a little embarrassed at how much the bag moved toward me every time she punched and kicked. and just when i thought i was awesome for getting ready for a half ironman. oh well. i guess kickboxing is like yoga, too: we all have different strengths and weaknesses. at least i know i need to work on my punch and kick a bit more.

Travelin'Oma said...

I just turned down a zucchini. I hadn't thought of making it into cake!

Pina said...

You really bring joy to the world. Thank you.

whit said...

Mart you are the best..thanks for the post and putting a smile on my face. Hope the bear is feeling better.

jpoag said...

just what i need to read
just what you need to write
thanks for being you and reminding me to be just me

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