This blog is meant to be...and I want it to be...more of a help to those of you going through this, too, than it is a story telling session for me. The last couple of weeks, however, have been a struggle for me and I'm being a little more self indulgent in my writing. But I guess that's a help, too, maybe. Because there ARE triggers. Things will happen long after you think you have it together that throw you off again. The funny thing for me is that I really don't feel like this is "long after I got it together". In fact, I feel like I, in some ways, just started "getting it together". But, regardless, the shooting in Colorado threw me for a massive loop, which you know if you read the last post.
Tonight's post is different. Today I'm focusing on a choice I'm making that may relieve me of that particular obsession. Maybe. I also started on a new medication that's used to treat those with GAD (Generalized Anxiety Disorder) who suffer anxiety triggers (gabapentin). We'll see how that goes. But mostly, I want to make these changes for myself.
When I first began seeing my counselor for anxiety and OCD, she suggested that I try yoga. I recently quit smoking (still struggle with that but I'm doing it) and I told her that I miss the inhalation of it the most...more than the nicotine. When I felt anxious or stressed or under a lot of self pressure, the inhaling of a cigarette made me feel better. She thought yoga might give me that kind of breathing and also give me all the other mind and body health benefits.
I'd always kind of wanted to try yoga but I was afraid I was too fat, too inflexible, too uncoordinated, too (fill in the blank). But I wanted to feel...normal?...better?...okay?...human?...again badly enough that I was willing to risk it.
My first yoga class was at 24 Hour Fitness. The teacher suggested that bathing suit season was coming up soon and said "hit it girls!" as if Jane Fonda circa 1984 was my yoga instructor. She also played Bon Jovi's "Blaze of Glory" during class. If you aren't familiar with that song, it suggests that we "go down" in that blaze of glory. Also, it was hard. Really hard. And no one told you what to do if it was too hard for you. Go down in your blaze of glory, I guess? I got very mad during class...because mad is my go-to emotion. Mad at the teacher, mad at myself, mad at the practice of yoga for being so dumb.
A few weeks later, when I began at my current yoga studio on a Groupon, I was dubious. But I took my first class with my sweet teacher Susan, and I instantly felt as if my life had been changed. I DID breathe....and I DID feel better! I thought about my body for an hour...but not about how fat it was....or about how it should be doing something else...or it ought to be calculating bills vs. salary...or listing things to do before tomorrow. I only thought about how to move it and use it at that very moment. And while that may be normal for some people, I had never, EVER, thought about my body that way before. Ever.
But there was one problem: savasana. If you're not a yoga person (I wasn't until two months ago and I had to look up what letter that word even starts with to write it in this blog entry), savasana is the final pose of a yoga class. It's also sometimes called corpse pose, and as that name suggests, you just lie there. Soft music is sometimes played, sometimes not. No one talks. No one moves. Most people love it. I hate it. I mean, I WANT to love it. But I can't. No matter how beautiful the yoga experience is, something always comes in. And it's usually something that I've been working hard on not obsessing over. It's usually something that I've even conquered obsessing about in my every day life. It's worry. And I feel like it's laughing at me.
And then James Holmes took lodging in my brain.
Savasana seems to be my brain's very favorite time to worry about James Holmes. And last week during my very favorite class, David Logsdon, Leslie's murderer, joined him there. And I cried all through my savasana. And then I didn't go back all week. That makes me angry...angry at myself and both of them for taking away the thing that was making me feel so...I don't know if happy is even the word. I don't know if I know the word. But I know that I don't WANT to not want to go back.
So I've made a decision. I've decided that, if they want to be there so badly, I'm inviting them. James Holmes and David Logsdon, you are invited to my savasana. I don't know what you want with me, but I know that yoga is the place where I am finding myself. Maybe you are part of me, too, now. And I just have to figure out what to do with you. I am opening my heart to you. I am offering you peace. I will probably cry throughout. Maybe I won't. My heart needs to let you in...so I can get you out. Because I can't give you all of my energy anymore.