Posts Tagged ‘body’

the sound

this morning at seven i left the house and ran 2.5 miles through the nearby woods and fields with castle james.

i had my iphone in my hand and i was using an application to time/distance the run but i left the headphones at home.  it has been several weeks since i last listened to music as i ran.  it turns out, i like the sound of real life happening around me more than sound tracking my run.

i was reminded of how much has changed in the world, in our towns, in our society since the invention of the walkman.  a small, portable, system for tuning out of relationship with the world around us.  pop on your headphones and disappear into your own new land with music of your choice.  now you are excused from hearing the birds sing, the frogs calling to each other in the wetlands, your dog panting beside you.  with headphones on you won’t stop to say hello to the woman you pass every wednesday morning on the sidewalk.  you’ll barely even notice those kids playing in front of the yellow house you jog past.

i’ve been running to the soundtrack of the woods and my suburban town.  i think i’ll stick with it.


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i stayed up too late last night reading a book on knitting and then the pea decided to wake up a million and a half times to whine and nurseandnurseandnurse. this morning i was a little done with it. when she asked me about 3.68 seconds after we got out of bed for, “milkies side milkies milkies mama side milkies,” i got snippy and then flash asked me if i got up on the wrong side of the bed.

i am not about to give up on my nursing relationship and i am most of the time a-okay with it but there are moments when she is obsessed with the nursing and i just want a few minutes to make my coffee, or fold some laundry, or check my email, without a small person attached to my breast.

two hours later i had finally gotten us all dressed and ready and our bags packed so we could leave the house. (us all = me, pea, bean, castle james — although i don’t have to dress him.)

we drove to my parents house and that is where my day started to change. i took castle james and one of my parents dogs out for a run. i ran for 25 minutes through fields and along paths in the forest. honestly, a few months ago when i started this couch to 5k running plan i could barely jog the 60 seconds it started with. now, about two months later, i can run for 25 minutes. holy crap. (pardon me.)

i actually enjoy it now. especially the running with our dog part. oh, and the running in the woods part. oh, and the part where i feel proud of myself for getting this far.

after my run i asked my mom if she would mind watching the kids for a few more minutes so i could shower. and she said, “sure go ahead.”

if you are a stay at home parent with two young kids then maybe you know what a treat this is. a run and then a real true shower. not a baby wipe rubbed around your arm pits and neck while you simultaneously pee and try to find a pair of cleanish jeans to pull on. a shower.

it was only one hour later than the time i had finally left our house. it has only been two months since i set out to learn how to run. i have only been thinking about why i eat (and drink) for two days. but, the truth is change happens. i think it happens constantly. at times i am directing it and setting intentions and holding awareness and reveling in the change. other times i am sucked along for the ride. life is totally impermanent.

if that doesn’t make all the should’s reveal themselves as a hoax then i am not sure what does.

i might have to go looking for the lecture a brilliant dog gave me once on the fact that time and space do not exist. now there is some life changing information.

happy friday people.
happy changing.
happy discovering the spot you believe you are in right this moment.
happy breathing.

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and god

yesterday evening i watched the oprah show on which she hosted geneen roth, the author of the new book “women food and god”. it made me think.

what kinds of things do i do when i am losing touch with my core self, my higher self, god, the universe?
when are my actions trying to fill a void that can only be filled by that connection?

i am not going to run around collecting answers to those questions right now. i think sometimes it is equally important to sit with the power of the question itself. that is my intention. my intention is attention.

yesterday i sat here writing about accepting myself as i am. loving myself right now. geneen roth said on the show that we cannot hate ourselves enough to get to a place where we are happy. oh yes, that resonated with me. belittling myself does not bring about change. it brings about hiding out in a frozen little corner of shame and doubt.

what makes me live in ways that feel good is, funnily enough, feeling good.

i don’t have a nice tidy package to wrap this post up in. i just feel like the universe is conspiring to show me, remind me, again and again how important it is for me to foster my love for my self. it might be the most important thing i can do for my children and my family. i don’t mean that i love myself when my house and clean, and the kids are eating carrots, and the laundry got folded and put away right after i finished my 3 mile run. i mean, i need to find the path to loving myself when play dough is smashed into the rug, the mornings oatmeal is still congealing on the counter, i haven’t showered since the weekend, and i just ate half of a chocolate chip muffin.

maybe i am talking about transcendence. maybe not. doesn’t really matter what we call it. i am trudging up my path on the mountain. i am thankful for any insight that shows me a nice trail to follow.

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today i was scheduled to begin week four of my couch – 5k.

i spent the morning trying to think of reasons why i couldn’t possible do it.

discussing with myself possible options and other plans.

wondering who would win the debate.

considering the possibility of giving up the whole thing.

yes, that is right.  two days after the sneaky forest healing i am ready to quit.  what can i say?

resistance is the strangest thing.  when i am helping other people i can sometimes see that the things they need the most to do, to try, to be – they fight the hardest against.

then suddenly the switch flips and we find our way to the path and we breathe again.

i did run.

the running voice won.

the other voices dedicated themselves to being sure their messages were heard throughout the run but hey, that’s ok.  i know they love me.

as i try to remember, relearn, rediscover some appreciation for my body i waffle a lot.  do i want to diet?  just exercise?  do i want to loose weight as fast as i can?  do i want to try to love myself at this weight?  do i want to give up wheat and dairy again?  do i need to detox?  eat less?  get some vitamins?

the unbaked bread in the fridge has been taunting me.

i gaze longingly at the container imagining what i could do.  bake it up plain and eat it with brie?  roll it out into a pizza dough?  make an artichoke and feta flatbread?  try out the carmel nut raisin sticky bun recipe?

i have been doing my running and trying to make healthier eating choices for three weeks and i have noticed no change in my weight.  zero.

flash told me not to be concerned, fat was turning into muscle and i was looking trimmer.  (bless him.)

wotw’s fingers told me to eat less calories.

i am like any person.  tell me to be without and i feel deeply depressed.  i sit thinking of all the things i should not eat.  i spend whole minutes wondering what i must deny myself in effort to lose some pounds off my middle.  i feel forlorn.

i know what i need to do is focus on what makes me feel good.  eat things that fill me with energy.  i know my body has the ability to steer me correctly if i take the time to listen.

when i break it down to the simplest version of understanding in my mind i think, do i want to put myself on a detox diet or do i want to be french skinny?

after the run i took a quick shower and put some jeans on and did the standard once over check in the mirror. i was shocked and pleased to find i did not hate my butt. i looked again just to be sure i wasn’t making this up — the belly still looks like a deflated floatie toy but the bum is shaping up nicely.

to celebrate i allowed an indulgence. home made from lovely fresh, organic ingredients a la french skinny – the sticky buns:

with the sticky buns resistance is not such a problem.

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food matters

recent flat breadish

the other day i was looking at the tag line here on my blog and wondering if i ought to remove the “sometimes food.” truthfully, i haven’t been writing much about food in the last months. i definitely have realized i do not have the makings to be a food blogger. i love food. i dream about food and cook food and focus on food throughout my day but i am not a food blogger. all the pictures and exact measurements elude me.

while i was in south carolina i put some weight back on. i think it was the weight i had lost frequenting the gym and it just happily piled back on. comfy cozy. when i returned and was talking about it with flash i mentioned my feeling that having two kids this young makes it hard for me to be consistent about working out. working out is what it would take for me to lose the weight at this point. i don’t want to always be upset with the extra pounds i am wearing. it feels bad to feel bad.

i would rather just feel good.

with that in mind i put some thought into how i could feel good. i wanted some clarity on what it made sense for me to be striving for. i have written some about my more recent efforts to connect more fully with physical body. i know this is a work in progress for me and i know that a part of it is finding ways to dedicate myself to using my body more and to moving joyfully more often.

suddenly though, i thought again about the connection between what i put in my body and how i feel about my body. i have been in and out of this many times in my life, and each time i cycle through it i end up sustaining a healthier version of eating. i feel myself cycling back in again though. somehow, as the winter months set in i thought less about what i was eating and how it was making me feel. i started thinking about food as what was making me fat instead of as what was nourishing me and creating the energy for my physical body to use.

it is a subtle and simple shift back to eating for better energy. i start the day with a green smoothie (or two). i focus on eating foods i have prepared myself with whole ingredients. i bake our bread. i have some simple salads ready and waiting in the fridge to be a base for an easy lunch. i thaw single portions of veggie soups i made this fall for another simple lunch option. i only eat meat from our local meat csa share. i snack on nuts, cheese and olives. i cook a meal that i think my husband will enjoy for dinner.

i am not denying myself anything. i am still drinking my coffee. i had a bite of chocolate after lunch today. i am not trying to lose weight here. i am trying to feel good. i am recognizing that the way my body feels has a dramatic affect on my spirit. i am recognizing that there is not such a huge chasm between the woowoo warrior work and my love of food.

so, i will keep baking. i will keep cooking. i will keep going to whole foods as a special birthday treat. i will keep my tagline as it is.


lunch – cabbage soup from the freezer (topped w olive oil parmesan cheese)

dinner – sweet potatoes with garlic and cumin, country style pork shoulder ribs with a sauce i made up , salad

tuesday :

lunch – chef salad

dinner – beef brisket (in the slow cooker with lime, cilantro, cumin, chili pepper, salsa), brown rice with black beans and corn, all topped with avocado and cilantro


lunch: salad topped with brisket and rice leftovers

dinner: take out for my bday!


lunch: same salad as wednesday!

dinner: two steamed artichokes with lemon butter (i was home alone it was a bday treat)


lunch: salad w lots of nuts and seeds and avocado/garlic/lemon dressing

dinner: left overs and spinach salad.

everyday breakfast is green smoothie and either a bowl of kashi cereal or a few slices of homemade bread.  this week the bread is a “five grain” i adapted from the healthy bread in 5 mins a day book.  it is super dense but lovely toasted with some butter.  i also have coffee each morning.

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the other day i wrote about some of the realizations i took away from a local yoga class. i mentioned the ease of allowing the goodness in that the teacher encouraged and how her message was so timely for me. the pace of the class moved slowly through each asana which allowed me the time and space to breathe and connect more fully with my present state and with my body.

connecting with my body has been a focus for me in the last six months or so and one i continue to struggle with. i have a tendency, personally, to live in my mind more than my body and even to flee my physical body more often then not – floating away into the space right above me. if you are someone who is closely tied to your body you might have no idea what i am talking about but i have a feeling that i cannot be alone in my struggle.

a part of my recent dedication to working out has been about having a way to reconnect with my body. at times in my life, i have had the time to dedicate myself to a regular yoga practice which was a pleasure and did me a world of good. for some reason, this spring, pure yoga is not what called to me. i found myself loving the act of pushing myself through a cardio class at the gym – kicking, jumping, sweating, pulse racing, getting strong.

some of the work i have done in recent therapy, talking with and moving towards healing some of the hurt parts of my self has left me feeling like it is more possible for me to live in my body. but it still does not come naturally to me. i spend time breathing and calling myself to be more aware of how i am physically located in my flesh. i pull my self down towards my feet and encourage awareness of the body as a part of being present in the now.

in the yoga class the other day, as we slowly stretched ourselves into simple asanas i took a moment to invite myself more fully into my physical body. i was feeling alive in my body as i thought about how to move and position and i encouraged my spirit to come on home into this. the words that arose for me were simple, it is safe to come into your body now.


i was surprised at my emotional reaction to this word. i felt overwhelming sadness as i repeated the phrase, it is safe here. you can come into your body. nothing in this space can hurt you.

why would i not feel safe in my body?

as soon as the question arose i was in a scene. seventh grade and i am about twelve or thirteen years old. i am tall and thin and angular with none of the roundness anywhere on my body that i wish i would develop. i am in a black skirt that fits snugly from my waist down until it ends above my knees. i am also in a blue sweater that used to belong to my mom. it is a bright lapis lazul blue with a high neck and buttons down the back. i am in the small space that we have to use for free time at my school. i attend a private school and there are only twenty five of us in my grade. our “hang out” room has a couch that fits about four of us and a window alcove area, a small desk and a book shelf. it is across the hall from some teachers offices and it has two entrance/exit doors. both of which are supposed to stay open.

but in this moment neither door is open. i am the only girl in the room with three boys and they have found a way to jokingly surround me and get a few of my buttons undone. i am hot and worried about what is happening and thrilled that i am worthy of attention. i am looking down and someone’s hands are slipping through the undone button space at my back and around to touch the tiniest sprouting of breasts that i have. my cheeks are burning hot with shame about how small my breasts are and i am wishing for this moment to end somehow without it being awkward and without me messing anything up. the hands are there and gone so quickly and then a teacher is pushing the door open and telling us sternly that it should be open at all times and i have slid down onto the couch so my undone buttons don’t show.

you are safe in your body now.

this all must have happened before my first friend was raped. at least before i knew about my friends being raped. this was just a glimpse of the beginning of what being a woman would mean, in part. being a woman in a body that can be violated. being a girl growing into a woman’s body and hearing of all her friends bodies that have been violated. not knowing where the line between pleasure and violation lies yet. not knowing where the line between wanting to be desired and not wanting to be touched lies.

later that sweater was missing a button and i used to continue to wear it with a safety pin holding it closed instead. i don’t know when i lost the button. i don’t know why we didn’t sew a new one on. i don’t know why i loved that sweater so much. i can’t remember who closed it back up that day.

i know that a part of my work right now is coming back into my body. truly living there. i know that when i asked my spirit why it didn’t feel safe it took me back that far. to my own flushed cheeks and tight skirt and sweaty confusion. a moment i never would have thought i would remember so perfectly. i guess, a piece of me is still standing there wondering how to feel. she is probably a part of the group i am inviting back in. she is probably one of the girls who i am aiming to convince that i have things under control now and they don’t have to worry. i know lines. i don’t let lines get crossed anymore. i am a grown up woman. i am strong. i have power. i can keep us safe.

you may come home here. i have my voice. i know my spirit. we deserve to enjoy this body.

it is safe.

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over a week ago when i first started having a rash on my body my friend jane (who lives really far away and couldn’t even see me) asked me if it might be pityriasis rosea? i looked at it online and thought…well, maybe but mine doesn’t look that bad.

well now over a week later guess what? i have been diagnosed (after a long morning seeing several different doctors) with pityriasis rosea! and guess what else, mine looks even worse then what you see on the internet! woot! in other good news, it is not usually itchy but mine is itchy! i feel so blessed.  and to top it all off i have been assured that pityriasis rosea doesn’t last longer then FOURTEEN WEEKS!  saweeeeet.  i have the itchy version of a fourteen week rash.

i tend to be a holistic, homeopathic, herbal remedy kind of gal. but at this point i am willing to give western medicine a chance so i let the dermatologist call in a prescription for a topical steroid that is safe while nursing.

seriously, my case is bad. my family practice doctor asked me if i minded if he took pictures. uh huh. yeah. he did. i am not shy though so i said, sure. anything to help medicine right?

i keep considering taking pictures myself. truly, it is a remarkable rash. i stare at in in awe until i remember it has taken the place of my skin and then i suddenly fall back into my dark rashy place. what do you think? would you chronicle such a awesome outbreak on your body with photographic evidence?

at the dermatologists office she suggested i also do light therapy treatment and oatmeal (or other soothing) baths. i joked, “oh yes, i will take long soaking baths in all my free time at home with my one and three year olds.”

dr: are you married?
me: yes.
dr: well then, you have a husband at home with you sometimes.
me: yes.
dr: give him those kids and take the baths. really.
me: yes ok, i will do that.
dr: you need to.
me: ok ok, i will make it happen.

(now the best part.)

dr: and for some of those soaks you might have to go somewhere else. like, say the bar.


now that is a prescription.


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