Tuesday, May 07, 2013

Trip North Part Four

In my previous post, I left off on Saturday evening.  My mother had gone to her room to read and go to bed while I went to the Energy Medicine Yoga practice led by LaurenWalker.  She offered suggestions for how to modify everything.  There was never a need to do something that was too challenging and even when she said we would do tree pose, she urged anyone who needed to do so to move towards the walls.

Needless to say I made a bee-line to the wall.  Other than that, I was able to follow the entire practice, which incorporated some of the techniques and methods that Donna Eden had been teaching us.  At one point, Lauren showed us how to do something that Donna said was difficult to do on one’s self.  I tell you, I could feel the energy vibrating from head to fingertips to toes.  She’s working on a book and I, for one, cannot wait!  I hope that the book comes with a guided yoga practice on cd.  A dvd would be great too but a cd may be easier to add to a book.  (I’ve said several times that yoga and meditation practice books are wonderful but it’s hard to do a guided meditation from a book when you have to keep looking at the text and the same goes for a yoga practice.)

My mother doesn't like to have
her picture taken so I took a pic
of her socks.
Sunday morning, after a lovely silent breakfast, my mother and I grabbed our books to have them signed.  My mother preceded me and, while I was on line, one of the helpers asked if she could hold some points on me to help me feel better.  It was the one week mark of Romanov’s death and I know I was carrying that sadness inside.  When it was my turn to have my book signed, I don’t know what I said to Donna except that I thanked her for a wonderful workshop experience and asked her where she bought her beautiful necklaces.  I didn’t look at what she wrote in my book until my mother and I could both look in our books back in her room.

In my mother’s book she wrote in purple and blue and said that my mother’s life colors are violet and turquoise.  In my book she wrote in the same blue pen and said that my life colors are turquoise and crystal.  I don’t know much about life colors but I did a little research and learned that they are different from auras because auras can change, indicative of the present state of mind or the immediate experiences of life whereas life colors are more essential, unchanging.

There was one final workshop and then my mother and I were on our own for the rest of our stay at Kripalu. I had hoped to go on one of the easy hikes but you had to sign up for them.  I didn’t want to sign up and then feel too sick or tired to go on the walk which might keep someone else from going.  With limited number allowed to go, it felt too selfish.  I kept picturing a group of friends going to sign up and seeing one too few spaces left and choosing not to sign up because they couldn’t all go together only to have me stay behind because I’m too tired.

I was very tired a lot of the time and, as I said before, I was probably depressed as much as I was tired.

We traded our workshop badges for the R&R badge which afforded us access to all of the yoga practices we could want to enjoy.  During the rest of our stay, when we weren’t napping (or in my case, desperately trying to nap) or reading, we did go to a few things.  We participated in a metta meditation, went to a lecture on energy healing (with an emphasis on prana, mudras, and pranayama), a talk on affirmations and mantras, and last but not least an introduction to Ayurveda.

Monday, I had a bit of oddness occur, in the way odd things happen in my life.  I had seen a book in the gift shop and my mother had given me some money to use as I would.  This book, Mindfulness Yoga, appealed to me because so much of my personal yoga practice is, by necessity, mindful.  Being ever vigilant, ever aware of my tenuous balance, I have to very mindful, focusing on my breath and body as I move from one asana to another.  I opened the book and noticed some things that especially appealed to me.  (Book review coming in a few more weeks when I’ve had an opportunity to use some of the practices described in the book.)

So I bought the book on impulse and started reading it, devouring it, immediately interested in Frank Jude Boccio’s story, his experience of having Buddhists looking at his yoga practice as unnecessary and the yogins in his life saying that Buddhism is too austere to ever bring bliss.   But I digress.

Having tried to take a nap, I gave up and went to the café to get something to tide me over.  I’d promised my mother that I would wake her up by a specific time so I had my phone with me to keep track of the time.  I kept checking the time because I kept losing track of myself and everything as I was reading the book.  I worried that I would get so consumed with reading just one more page that I would forget the time and I know myself well enough to know that I may think I’m only reading one more page and find myself at the end of a chapter before I realize it.

So you can imagine my confusion when a man walking by my table stopped to ask me what I thought of the book.  Ummm . . . okay.  I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised by men interrupting me when I’m reading.  I have a husband who does it all the time.  This man asked me what I thought of the book and, without explaining my raison d’être for reading it, I said that I was enjoying it very much, that I was already drawn into learning more about the writer and his practice, and have long thought that mindfulness and yoga are practices that lend themselves to being used together, not necessarily removed one from the other.

I have no doubt that I was not nearly as clear in what I said as I am here in my writing.  Nonetheless, we talked a bit and then he introduced himself as the author.

Now, in my defense, I should like to point out that the author’s photograph is not on the book cover so there is no reason for me to have known to whom I was speaking.  He also stood in such a way that I could not have seen his guest badge albeit that would not have helped for the badges put the first names quite large and last names are quite small. 

When he walked away, after hearing me say good things about his book, I checked the time again and thought about how embarrassed I would have been had I said, “I don’t know.  I think I am going to return it to the gift shop because this guy is just trite and uninteresting in his prose.”  Goodness knows I have written book reviews that have said that and worse!  So I sighed with relief that I could honestly say that I was enjoying the book.  I don’t know if I told him I was having a hard time putting it down.  I should have because it was true.

But the oddness doesn’t end there because I watched him sit down at a table in the café with a pretty cloth on it and I thought to myself, “Oy, didn’t they do that when Donna Eden was signing her books?”  Why yes, yes they did, and here was Frank Jude Boccio signing his book too.  Needless to say, I had him sign my book before heading up to my mother’s room to wake her up from her nap and tell her about the odd experience I had while she was lucky enough to sleep.

I guess it’s a good thing I was incapable of taking a nap that day.  I bought another book while I was there.   None of those were signed.  Not yet, anyway.  At this point, I wouldn’t put it past me to be randomly reading a book in a public place and run into the writer.  I hope it only happens when I’m really enjoying what I’m reading. 


  1. I like your mom's colorful socks. :)

    Interesting post about your trip! It sounds as if you enjoyed your trip, and your "mindful" reading.

    1. I really needed the trip but coming home sort of dropped me back into the grief where I had left it so I had moved forward emotionally but then slammed back into the sorrow when I came home. I am glad I went, of course. I just wish now I'd been able to stay here and grieve more fully.