First, thank you to all who are reading this for your comments and encouragement! I treat it like journaling so it is a valuable spend of my time whether or not anyone else reads it - but being, well, me, I love that other people are reading it and getting something out of it! Keep'em coming, those comments. :)
I do, however, worry these posts will start to bore you, with the whole Groundhog Day kinda life I'm leading right now....so I'll try to add a little, uh, color now and again.
Tonight in our 2-hour 5 p.m. class (don't gasp, they're just about all 2 hours lately), Bikram got up from the podium after Rabbit (only 2 postures to go in the class) and said to Craig, "Boss, take over stretching, I have to go take a shit." So he left, Craig jumped in and we did first set of stretching - he was lightening fast I'm guessing in order to get things done. Bikram came back and said, (I wish I was kidding....) "No pee pee, no doo-doo, but I just let the biggest fart ever! I scare myself, I hold in fart for 90 minutes for you." And then went on about how women hold them in and let silent but deadly ones...."oh, women seem so sweet but they let them out slow and they are deadly! just deadly!" I heard him recounting this banner flatulence at lecture later in the day, that is how astounding it was for him, apparently.
He was pretty mean today, getting meaner all the time. I got yelled at again, for not locking my knee - what is sad is it was locked! Well, for the whole first set, anyway, and partially through the second, and of course, right before he looked, I lost the lock. He hollered at me and someone on the other side, he said, "You're losers if you can't lock the knee. Lazy. Pathetic. I don't even know how you get into my training, no lock the knee." I just don't take it personally, because really, I'm sure a slew of people don't have their knee locked; and I know how much better I'm doing at it than even a week ago. So there.
Backing up, we had Emmy this morning and she is also getting firmer, but class was just fine. And really, my afternoon class was pretty good too. It's starting to mellow out - again, like a marathon, when you hit your stride - a little bit anyhow. I'm sure the curveballs are sure to be lobbed my way, our way really. Anyhow, we had more anatomy today with Dr. T. followed by a lecture on pain from Emmy. It was helpful and more well-organized than any talk we've had yet. You could actually take meaningful notes!
One thing she talked about is a big belief - which I buy into - around the psychosomatic contribution to pain. While I believe much pain is very real, I also notice that sometimes, I do forget about something bothering me when I get distracted - implying that it's not as bad as it seems when I'm focused on it. I've had a few yoga classes where I didn't feel so great going in, but once I got going, I completely forgot about it. I accept it's not always that easy, but perhaps it is more often than we all realize.
Tonight was another lecture from Bikram; we were all a little hesitant about what we were going to get, and for how long. Last night's lecture was all over the map, mixed with how tired we all were and the anxiety of "when do we get out? when do we get out? will it really go to 2 a.m.? will he really go until 2 a.m.?" - it was somewhat maddening. Tonight we didn't expect anything different; he doesn't go to bed until 5 a.m., and sees no reason why anyone else needs to really. So there we all were, a big mess of exhausted yogis secretly praying for mercy, from someone who puts no value on the concept of mercy - at all - and if anything, despises it. Awesome! We seem to be finishing by around midnight...which is tolerable.
That said, in the end, I really, really enjoyed the talk tonight. He spoke first on concentration, and the fact that it is what separates (effectively) smart people from "idiots" (a word he is fond of). It's interesting how he is all over the map, but if you sift through it, you start to see how it applies. He'll tell you over and over that he is in the business of giving life; and that he is the only man in the world is 100% honest with you and tells you the truth, not what you want to hear. He went on to speak about the 5 aspects of yoga (asana, pranayama, etc.) and it was interesting enough to keep me awake and organized enough for me to take notes in a meaningful way. That was nice.
In some ways, it scared me - I fear not ever being able to really concentrate. I know I look like in class right now, a big ball of distraction, fidgety, unfocused, unable to do anything but make it through most of the time (though, that is getting better - we are all finally starting to sort of begin to recognize our own practices in the mirror). Still, I will ponder this kind of thing like mad, promise myself a nice focused, uber-concentrative (is that a word?) practice, and then I get there and I'm wiping sweat off my face, looking around, fidgeting, fixing (or wringing out) my bra, making eye contact with people, you name the rule, I'm breaking it. And while I'm minorly disappointed in myself, usually, I'm so overwhelmed with the joy of finishing the class in one piece, it's good enough. So maybe that's just where I am right now, eh? And maybe being learning to be "good enough" is part of my path here, as it is a major, core issue for me in every aspect of life. More to come on that topic.
Today's Pix: Not riveting. Me after class #13 & 14; Emmy; Above, the skeleton's expression says it all...kind of a "oy-vey! what have i done to myself!" feeling that we all have some of the time :)