Friday, 12 July 2013

Still alive and still practicing!

Okay, first of all, I apologize for my lack of posting and commenting the past four weeks or so. I was really sick for almost two weeks, the intense part lasted about 8 days and then I couldn't breathe through my nose for five more days. As I picked up my practice again, nothing special was happening except that I realized I'd lost a lot of muscle in my arms and gained some fat around my belly due to me not being able to move for so long.

But now to the more interesting stuff:

Today’s practice was oh so very special and oh so very unexpected! Due to beautiful sunny weather and summer holidays, somehow I ended up being the only person attending Friday’s 5:30 pm led class at the shala.
My teacher and I chatted and waited until 5:35 pm before we started to make sure there really wasn’t anyone else coming. I asked her if she’s still leading the class for me or if I should just practice Mysore style.
Led class it was.
It felt really strange, yet not uncomfortable, having a led class with no one else besides me. I felt watched, all the time. Obviously, I was watched all the time. I was painfully aware of everything that was off in my practice. My inability to roll over my toes from chaturanga to up-dog, my breath that was disturbed when I was getting into asanas that require some serious effort from me, my fidgeting (pulling the shirt down/straightening my mat towel), the amount of time I need to get into some asanas even though it should only take one breath, etc…
But I see this experience very positively, because I think that this is what my practice needs the most right now. Precision! I lack precision not only on the mat but in other parts of my life as well. I’m very bad at focussing on one task for longer periods and I take too much time to finish tasks in general. Ah, the lessons learned on the mat really do apply to life off the mat.
But the most extraordinary thing today was that my teacher gave me all three asanas to complete the Primary Series. I just received some new ones onTuesday. I think it either hasn’t sunk in completely or I’ve been really working well at non-attachment but I just took it calmly and acknowledged the fact that I will have to practice these poses from now on. I’m still perfectly calm about it as I’m writing this. I think Setu Bandhasana (shown in the picture) will be a real piece of work. I did it with my hands on the floor beside the head and my teacher’s assistance and I still felt a lot of pressure on my neck.
I now just realized, this means I’m starting to learn drop-backs from now on as well. My teacher told me that I will learn them as soon as I practice full Primary Series.
What a nice way to finish practice week. I think I have kind of been waiting for something to happen somehow but I didn’t know what, and now it did.

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