Depression Marathon Blog

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Diagnosed with depression 19 years ago, I lost the life I once knew, but in the process re-created a better me. I am alive and functional today because of my dog, my treatment team, my sobriety, and my willingness to re-create myself within the confines of this illness. I hate the illness, but I'm grateful for the person I've become and the opportunities I've seized because of it. I hope writing a depression blog will reduce stigma and improve the understanding and treatment of people with mental illness. All original content copyright to me: etta. Enjoy your visit!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Dogs and Cobras and Dead bugs. Oh my!

Up, down, in, out...breathe, breathe!
Dogs and cobras and swans.
Dead bugs, pigeons and camels.
Thunderbolts and warriors
Sun salutes and prayer twists.

Prayer twist--that one comes with the instruction, "Ring out your guts. Twist from the base of your spine all the way up. Squeeze every internal organ you've got." Geez, I thought yoga was supposed to be kind and gentle! I was mistaken.

It's day nine of my 40 Days of Yoga Personal Revolution class. Not only am I learning all kinds of interesting lingo, I’m sore as hell! Well, okay, maybe only sore as heck. It’s likely half of my soreness is from shoveling drifts of snow after yesterday’s blizzard. But I digress…

So far, I’m pretty amazed. Sore, but amazed. I thought getting up at 4:25 every morning would just about kill me. I’ve actually tolerated it quite well, especially when one considers it was -15 degress this morning! Undertaking this endeavor in January in Minnesota certainly makes it more challenging, but doing the yoga seems to energize my entire day. I do catch a nap if I can, but even when I can’t, I survive.

I thought maintaining a food journal would be a waste of time. It hasn’t been! I’ve already cut down my portion sizes by actually measuring servings of food (like cereal!), and I’m making better food choices, too.

I thought forgoing food after dinner would leave me starving. It hasn’t. While I got hungry and chose to snack 3 times last week, I again made tiny choices in comparison to what I would have eaten the week before. I’m talking saltines and chocolate milk vs. ice cream and chocolate chip cookies! Big difference, don’t you think?

And I thought meditating on my own time, twice per day, would really, really suck. Okay, so far, it has! Progress not perfection. Progress not perfection. Progress not perfection…I’m still working on that one!

One very pleasant surprise: The book we are using and the yogis running the course seem nicely aligned with The Twelve Steps. It’s quite a unique experience to be in a room full of normies, with a few exceptions, and have the yogi recite the serenity prayer during the ending meditation. She also sprinkles in quotes from the program, like “Progress not perfection,” and “We can do what I cannot.” I love it.

The book is centered around “The Twelve Laws of Transformation.” Hmmmm…I’m sensing a theme here! I guess, as they say, this is right where I need to be, and right when I need to be here. I’ll keep you posted!


Anonymous said...

I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


etta said...

I've placed a link to the "40 Days" book, which we used as a guide for this program, in the right sidebar.