012// Missing Season

I should have known it when I felt it first –
when the colours on the leaves started changing 
and the air became real crisp in the morning- 
It’s in the glimmer of rays that shine onto windows
and reflect through condensation on a glass of water-
the one that I held to my lips right before I smelled it-
right before it filled me up and I sighed it out.
Then I wished I could have it back again. 
It lingers in the mist and rests among the leaves-
only to let its presence be known by the soft crunches that sound so familiar. 

She told me her heart
always aches this time of year 
and I said “listen, I get it.
Autumn is missing people season.
At least it’s poetic.”

With a sentimental heart,

Kolina

10.21.17

How you Breath, is how you Live

Yoga, for me, wasn’t really a choice. It kinda happened to me.  But for that I am very grateful.

You see I have navigated nearly three years with post concussion syndrome and myo-facial injury but it still manages to throw me for loops. In March 2017 I said goodbye to my weightlifting life and bought a two month groupon for unlimited hot yoga at De La Sol yoga studios in Hamilton. Yoga was the only method of movement that seemed to do any sort of good for me at the time.

My body was broken, my muscles were weak, and to be honest my soul was quiet discouraged and low with this progression of negative symptoms. Disheartened, I began attending classes regularly. My immediate response was that it made my body feel GOOD. I was blown away by the dedication of the teachers at the studio and the variety of classes that I could attend based on my skill level and body’s ability that day.

But something bigger has shifted in the past 7 months. First? I noticed that this might be the first time in my life that I actually have started to listed to my body. Truly and deeply. WHAT do you need right now body? How do YOU want to move. How incredible. That we don’t truly MOVE the way we want to- effortlessly with grace and ease. We are taught how to move- we don’t just do it. Why are we so rigid? This movement, with breath, has become so therapeutic to me.
Second? I stopped pushing myself past my limits. I have always been an incredibly big headed person when it comes to lifting, or working out in general. My ego has been kicked in the gut these days. It’s damn refreshing (mostly). I lay there while everyone else is balancing on one finger (haha) and it.feels.good.
Lastly? The inevitable happened. Yoga made its way into how I live my life. I am more connected, I look forward to taking a break and recentering, and I frequently take lessons from practice and apply them in my day to day journey. I know everyone says this will happen but I really didn’t understand it until I experienced it.

Bottom line is that I appreciate my whole self in its entirety so much more. The connection between body and mind that yoga has given me is something I’m having a hard time putting into words.

If you’re experiencing muscular discomfort- talk to your physiotherapist or health care professional about yoga (I find hot is the best). It’s not full proof, but I would say about 80-90% of the time I feel so. much. better. after a class. It sets the platform for me to take on my day. My mind is in a better place, I have given my body some love, and I have worked and stretched my muscles in a therapeutic way that is not damaging but rather nourishing. I am better able to do my physiotherapy and strengthen in areas that allow me to progress. Not only that, but it helps the pain. My muscles are stiff and ridged. The heat combined with the movement truly provides the right atmosphere for them to let go and relax.

De la Sol has a 30 day yoga challenge coming up next week and I’m excited to dedicate some serious time to my practice. 30 yoga classes in 30 days might be too much for me! We’ll have to see how it goes. But I think this could be a good push in the right direction. I still would like to get back to weightlifting and running eventually, but I would never leave yoga behind.

Too long didn’t read: MOVE WITH BREATH. It’s in the title. My yoga teacher begins every class with that saying. It’s so true. You will thank yourself if you do.

I hope you’ve found some time for yourself over the hubbub of the long weekend. There’s often lots of drinking, eating, long hours and stress involved. As for myself, I’ve been terribly sick. Rest, slow calming movements and bubble baths are on the agenda.

With thanksgiving, breath and a whole lot of love,

Kolina

Recipe for Raw Grief

From the Kitchen of Theresa’s Heart
Serves: One

Ingredients:

1 heaping cup disbelief
1 tablespoon reluctance to say goodbye
16 ounces excruciating pain
3 cups brutal sadness
2 tablespoons confusion (substitute questioning)
1/2 cup constant obsessing
8 ounces anger (substitute feeling misunderstood)
2 teaspoons agonizing guilt
3/4 cup embarassment
1 quart lonliness
Dash of untimely and needless

Directions: Preheat oven to 1123 degrees. In a small bowl, mix disbelief with reluctance to say goodbye. Next, trim platitudes from excruciating pain and discard. use mixture to coat pain. cook in scalding cast-iron skillet until blackened. set aside. fill large pot with tears and bring to boil. Lower heat; pour brutal sadness into a pot and cover. Allow to simmer for weeks. When sadness is numb, remove from heat and drain tears from pot. stir confusion and constant obsessing into sadness and set aside. Use mallet to pound anger until tender. Cut into bit sized pieces. fry in pan over high heat with agonizing guilt and embarrassment. When anger turns red, remove pan from heat. Layer on the sadness mixture, then cover with anger, guilt, and shame. Top with loneliness. Season with untimely and needless. Place in oven and bake until loneliness turns into intense longing. Let sit for a lifetime.

Notes: Pairs well with absolute fear. Best served smothered in love and compassion (may need assistance). Garnish with a sense of peace.

– Excerpt from “Bearing the Unbearable; Love, loss and the Heartbreaking Path of Grief” by Joanne Cacciatore.

I’m sharing these words because if you’ve never experienced loss then these words might scratch the surface of what it’s like. And if you have? Doesn’t it feel like she took the thoughts right out of your soul?

Sending love,

Kolina

What I Thought I needed

I like rainy days because they don’t carry any weight to them
It seems that the earth can just take a break and be
without any expectations but to grow and nurture itself
The flowers are blooming the way I imagine myself.
Slowly- with a great silent effort, and then? All at once.

“It makes me sad to think about how long I let myself suffer with the things that I have been through before I chose self care”

– you were doing what you thought you needed.


Today’s theme?

Compartmentalization.
What a word, safety net, and horrid space.

For me? My go-to, certified A+, one way street to a coping mechanism that is a full proof and easy way to make sure you can walk through hell with a smile on your face.
Put whatever happened in a box, seal it with a kiss, DON’T talk about it and NEVER look at it again. And there you go, you’re happy all the time because it just. doesn’t. exist.

I’m on a bit of a self journey at the moment (… isn’t life one big self journey…)  and that’s why I want to talk about what we can recognize in ourselves as methods of coping that we mask as healing.

“It makes me sad to think about how long I let myself suffer with the things that I have been through before I chose self care”

I thought I was saving myself. Now I realize that there’s a lot of grief and loss in my life that has never gone away. It feels like a breath of fresh air to say that. To recognize that it’s okay, but what I thought was self care… well it wasn’t. I’m not even sure I know what I’ve learned from this yet other than that I need to not do it.

What is self care to me now? I don’t know if I have the answer to that yet.
Right now it comes in baby steps. I get more sleep, do yoga, I (try to) say no when I don’t have time to see people, I eat ice cream more than once a month, I take myself on walks and sit with trees, and most importantly I give myself permission to feel and do my best not to apologize for taking the time I need to do that.
OH.. and I cry. A lot. Not just about sad, but when I feel joy as well.

This isn’t a self help blog. I’m not here to teach you how to practice self care, or tell  you that you compartmentalize or cope in certain ways. Because that would imply that I know what I’m doing or that I think the way I live is the way that others should.

What I’d love to start is a conversation. How do you see self care? How do you implement it into your busy life? What are ways in which you have learned from dealing with HARD, earth shattering shit. How do you recognize when you’re dealing with something in an unhealthy way? What do you do about it?

I think the ways in which we cope are undeniably human. I want to know more about it. I want it to be something we aren’t scared to talk about.
Share with me?

With Love,

Kolina