Friday, September 16, 2011

The Food Experiment

Practice is at a happy plateau. There are plenty of opportunities for refinement of movement, breath, and attention, but no immediate frustrations. Even mayurasana has settled for the moment into something that I can move through without the sort of "ick" feeling that it's brought up for the last year or so.

...but leave it to this practice to keep quietly peeling back the layers even when I'm not really looking.

The one thing that I have been noticing in practice lately is a feeling of heaviness. I ignored it for awhile, not liking at all what it seemed to be pointing to....arg. My weight had crept up. I am very much an emotional eater and after a roller coaster spring, too much cheese and chocolate had made themselves felt.

So began the food begins week 5.
What happens if I explore food in the same way as I might explore my asana practice?

The findings so far?...
I've constructed a number of patterns based on early mixed messages about food, health and body image. These patterns aren't serving me, but I'm finding the process of beginning to dismantle them very uncomfortable...uncomfortable in the early years of leg-behind-head kind of way...uncomfortable in the way of any pose that leaves you whimpering on the mat, staring into the face of fear and doubt. There is a lot here that I don't want to see.

The practice is good at being the rough spot to rub against as I shed habits like skin. Despite it's proclivity to point me directly at all the uncomfortable places, I trust it. I trust it because out of the years of practice is slowly coming a realization that I am not broken. I am enough just as I am.


  1. Thank you for sharing personally Chrisine - I have looked in the mirror several times and have not liked what I have seen to say the least!

    To quote Inside Owl: A long line of tents, lean-tos, forts and tree-houses out to the west. There’s a creaky fortress made out of books (a teenage self), an ivory tower (a self I lived in the first two years of grad school), different houses of worship, several porta-potties.

    Dealing with the several porta-potties is a challenge definitely - .. but I can BREATHE thx to your emphasis on that esp. during Mari C .... =)

  2. Thanks Bob!

    The interesting part to me is that I actually had to stop wanting to "look differently" before I could dig into any of the real stuff that lives underneath that idea. It was a sort of nudge from practice that made me aware that I wanted to "feel differently" that set me out on my current exploration. Similar to the difference between wanting to "make the shape of a pose" and wanting to find "ease of breath" in a pose.
    It's slow going, but worth the work to keep following the breath wherever it goes!