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30 Days of Yoga - Open

Day Nine of my thirty day TRUE yoga challenge and today I have been well and truly 'open' for business (not that kind of business, Jeez).

I got up early for a hot shower and when I'd finished, somehow - and God knows how - it was half an hour until I had to drag the Lads out of their pits. And it was after 7am, the time when I'd heard, through the You Tube grapevine, that Adriene Mishler's TRUE videos are posted each day in the UK. I did an elated little air punch, flipped out my mat and grappled with the Playstation controller. I knew what this meant. This meant that I could do my yoga now and then be smug all the love-long day knowing that I'd done it alongside the actual sunrise.

Alas, the You Tube grapevine was not as accurate as I might have liked. There was no sign of the video I needed and now my air punch seemed a bit sad. What should I do now?

I grabbed a coffee and pondered. The two things go well together, don't you know. But then I was just a bit too good at the pondering and I ditched the coffee (even though it was in my favourite cup) and got myself on that yoga mat anyway. Well, when in Rome and all that.

I went for the Morning Yoga video. At the beginning, Adriene invited me to come up with an intention for the practice and perhaps the rest of my day, at which point my mind did that thing it likes to do where it races off in a million directions, trying to find the appropriate data. Then my heart has to remind my head that this job is much better suited to her, and the li'l old mind can chill the heck out.

Wednesdays are typically a bit of a mental day for me. Full. To the brim. They're full in a good way, but sometimes I get a little apprehensive, worrying about energy levels and whether or not I'll actually be able to enjoy any of it. And that was it. Bingo. 'Enjoy' was my intention. Yes, I was going to have a busy day, but if I just took each small thing as it came, this early morning yoga practice included, maybe I could open up some space to enjoy it.

By the time I'd finished on the mat (and despite the little arm shake I had going on from a few too many planks), I breezed through my morning routine, dragging Lads out of pits included. I enjoyed kissing their rosy little cheeks goodbye at the school gates, I enjoyed my power walk back up the hill in the winter sunshine, and I enjoyed stepping back into my quiet, peaceful living room ready for my day nine video. Surely the gods of You Tube had presented it to us mere mortals by now.

And there it was. In all its shining glory. Day Nine. Open.

Open to possibilities.

Open to forgiveness and healing.

Open to the experience on the mat.

And yes, open to yourself, wherever you are right now.

So what better start than to fling open my living room window and get some fresh sea air into my lungs? What a difference this made! After a good few weeks of damp, drizzly weather, the kind of weather that would have you laughing incredulously at the thought of opening an actual window, this, my friends, was a welcome change.

It meant that when I was drawing my arms back into that delightful bow and arrow movement, my heart could open all the more. It meant that during the pigeon pose I could lift and breathe in a way that felt light and true. And it meant that I could really feel the breeze brushing my skin, opening my whole self up to the outside world in a way that is sometimes difficult mid winter.

It also meant I had to share my practice with the incessant squawk of the seagulls, but you've got to take the rough with the smooth.

This feeling of being 'open' never left me all day. AND it helped me with my initial intention to 'enjoy'. I actually enjoyed all of my work today - including cooking dinner about five hours early with the kitchen door propped open to the sound of those pesky seagulls but also to the brisk air streaming in and stretching my lungs evermore. There's nothing like spices sizzling and steam rising and feeling sunshine on the back of your neck. I was in my element in that little kitchen, if only for an hour.

And I'm not going to claim I was without worry or difficulty all day . . . I am only human. But I can say all round that I have had a really enjoyable day. Really enjoyable. Even down to Big Lad showing me that he can now pick my much-loved coasters up with his bum cheeks and Little Lad approaching me after dinner tonight, smiling sweetly and stating, "Thank you for my dinner but I hated it."

Tomorrow's video is entitled 'Detox'. Maybe that'll make up for the ginger biscuits I've scoffed whilst writing this blog post. Here's hoping.

Go well,


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