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Exploring a Personal Upgrade

I am a super sentimental person.  Like over the top.  Scrapbooks.  Pictures.  OMG. The pictures.  I have 28,000 on my phone, not really organized or backed up well.  

When I was a child, my parents/mom did none of that.  I have virtually no pictures of myself as a kid. My mom didn’t show up at my soccer games and take pictures.  She didn’t bug me about holding still to catch the smile and such.  She wasn’t that kind of person.  I guess thats ok.  

Though let’s be real. It stings a SHIT TON because she loves loves loves to take pictures of flowers and things and that. And her cat.  I mean, that was recently, I couldn’t say that about her during my younger years.  I really don’t remember that about her. She went to school, worked and such.

I am sentimental.  I think a decent portion of that comes from my past, not having real great memories and having just about nothing of my childhood.  Like I didn’t exist.  

WOW. There is a truth right there.  Like this 2000 piece puzzle that D and I worked on. I really loved the experience.  We grew as a couple a bit.  We enjoyed each other a bit.  There was a lot of thoughts that I entertained during.  The kids helped.  Just good stuff.  So … when it was finished, I saw a cool puzzle.  But I also saw a glowing thing of love and family.  Of something that I want a lot more of.

LOL.  Kind of like my AWFUL looking bike shoes.  They have gotten me through all my triathloning so far.  3 ironman.  A lot of blood guts and tears.  And yeah, a couple of times they might have smelled like urine.  A couple of relationships.  Some amazing times.  Some horrible times.  So I see them now, with new shoes that are just fine, training for ironman #4 (corona style, meaning a self ran ironman due to the world shutting down to survive), and I don’t want to throw them away.  D had fixed one of them when we first starting out out.  I mean seriously!!!! Some new dude was messing with my STINKY bike shoes, fixing them so they didn’t hurt my feet.  I want to dip them in that plating stuff like you do the baby’s first shoes and hang on the wall. LOL.  I’m silly.

Back to the puzzle, I didn’t want to take it apart.  I wanted to glue it together. Memorialize it.  Hang it up.  To store the juju, love and magic.  Cling to the hope that during difficult times in our house, that it will continue.  (I struggle with fear of abandonment issues, thanks mom and dad).   

I’m doing this relationship school program which is really helping me to open my eyes to how some of my behaviors make it claustrophobic for others.  Make it compressing.  I feel like this thing I wanted to do with the puzzle was more that than loving and honest being a sappy sap.  I wanted to grasp on to something in the hopes that it will stay forever.  

Thats the heart of a child that has been abused, starved, victimized and abandoned.  Those monsters, I’m working to get to know, tame and learn to be friends with.  Maybe help them be less monster like.  You know, like the Gremlins.  They didn’t eat over midnight.  They returned back to cute and cuddly.

I let the puzzle sit for a good bit. To try and figure out what I was going to do with it.  I was having a hard moment related to teenagers and the struggles there, was in a pissy mood … D said, don’t take it apart.  I was on the verge at that moment of just throwing the whole thing away, I’m that frustrated with the teenager/ex husband situation.  His kind words, direction, calmed me down in that moment and I walked away from it.  

I came back the next day and decided that I was going to do something different.  He doesn’t view stuff like I do.  He’s not even remotely as sentimental as I am.  Though it did mean good stuff for him.  And we live in a tiny house.  Hoarding all the good juju stuff just isn’t possible.

It really came down to the biggest reason why I wanted to keep it. Store love.  And grasp things so they don’t change.  So I thought.  I can keep the puzzle. Maybe we do it again. I have another puzzle.  Love isn’t something that just stays in a puzzle.  It’s stored in the kitchen table that it was on. In the location.  In the act.  In our home that we are working hard to build and protect.  

So … as we begin to work on another puzzle, that love is there.   As is well. 

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Vital Benefits of Alternate Nostril Breathing

BE CALM & BE STRONG

Alternate nostril breathing is a yogic breath control practice. In Sanskrit, it’s known as nadi shodhana pranayama. This translates as “subtle energy clearing breathing technique.”
This type of breath work can be done as part of a yoga or meditation practice. Alternate nostril breathing can also be done as its own practice to help you quiet and still your mind.

BENEFITS - the quick list
Alternate nostril breathing may help to:

  • Balance the body energetically
  • Relax your body and mind
  • Reduce anxiety
  • Heal from stress
  • Promote overall well-being

BENEFITS - the SUPER cool stuff

  • It improves attention and fine-motor coordination/performance.
  • It activates the parasympathetic nervous system and reduces blood pressure.
  • Lowers stress and improves cardiovascular functionOne of the main benefits of alternate nostril breathing is that it may lower stress. A 2013 study found that people who practiced alternate nostril breathing lowered their perceived stress levels.
  • Improves lung function and respiratory enduranceYogic breathing practices may improve lung function and respiratory endurance. A small 2017 study examined the effects of pranayama practice on the lung functions of competitive swimmers and found that it had a positive effect on respiratory endurance.  Improved respiratory endurance may also improve athletic performance.  The swimmers in the study did alternate nostril breathing in addition to two other breathing practices for 30 minutes, five days a week for one month. Larger, more in-depth studies are needed to expand upon these findings.
  • Lowers heart rateLowering your heart rate can help to promote cardiovascular health. According to a 2006 study, engaging in a slow yogic breath such as alternative nostril breathing may significantly decrease heart rate and average breathing rhythm.
    Alternate nostril breathing may be a useful method to help you lower your heart rate in the moment, too.
  • Promotes well-beingAlternate nostril breathing may enhance overall health and well-being. It has also been shown to have a positive effect on mental health by reducing stress and anxiety.​
https://youtu.be/kDidlMoDv0o

How To Do It
Focus on keeping your breath slow, smooth, and continuous. Focusing on your breath will help you to remember where you are in the cycle. You should be able to breathe easily throughout the practice.
To practice alternate nostril breathing:

  • Sit in a comfortable position with your legs crossed.
  • Place your left hand on your left knee.
  • Lift your right hand up toward your nose.
  • Exhale completely and then use your right thumb to close your right nostril.
  • Inhale through your left nostril and then close the left nostril with your fingers.
  • Open the right nostril and exhale through this side.
  • Inhale through the right nostril and then close this nostril.
  • Open the left nostril and exhale through the left side.
  • This is one cycle.
  • Continue for up to 5 minutes.
  • Always complete the practice by finishing with an exhale on the left side.

Useful and Research Links
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5660749/
https://www.calmwithyoga.com/increase-vital-energy-alternate-nostril-breathing/
https://theyogaspace.co.uk/blog/PostId/261/yogis-ahead-of-science-one-nostril-breathing-determines-how-you-feel

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