Break A Toe

Stuff I used to do…..

Yes, the phrase is, “break a leg”, but I am going a little personal here. Which sports activity is more likely to break a bone?

  • Taekwondo
  • Boxing
  • Aerobics
  • Spinning
  • Running
  • Dancing
  • Soccer
  • Weight Lifting
  • Yoga
  • Crossfit

If you thought yoga was the least likely, forget it. I broke a bone, the only bone I have ever broken, doing yoga. I have been in perpetual motion since I could walk, and have participated in all of the above sports. I have kicked things, punched things, had major impact, and lifted more weight than I should for my body build. And yet, yoga got me.

There are so many types of yoga. I have tried Hatha, Vinyasa, Bikram, Kundalini, Sculpting, Yin, and Ashtanga. It was the Ashtanga!

Ashtanga yoga is a system of yoga brought into the modern world by Sri Pattabhi Jois. There are 5 series of Ashtanga with progressive postures. A student must master the first to progress to the second, etc. Ashtanga yoga produces extreme heat within the body by synchronizing breath and movement. This heat can detoxify muscles and organs, and produce a wonderful state of calm. Not to mention the side effects of a great circulatory system, better sleep, and a strong body.

My problem was that I already had the onset of arthritis in the bones of my feet. The extreme flexion of the joints that is utilized in Ashtanga snapped the tip off the bone of my right big toe. I didn’t know it happened until I finally went to the podiatrist because of toe pain. It had already healed incorrectly, and 5 years later, had become rigid to the point where I needed foot surgery. No problem, I recently had foot surgery on the left big toe due the same arthritic condition. Now I have matching scars!

Don’t be deterred by my arthritis. Do the yoga, and the running, the weight lifting, and the cycling. It holds so much benefit for the mind and body. Yoga has in many ways, and at different times saved my life, so to speak. Yoga kept me sane, led me to meditation, and gave me strength to go through divorce, depression, and anxiety for many things in life. It’s the stuff we all cope with – nothing unusual. It just happened to be the anchor that kept my boat from drifting away on some pointless journey.

If you have never tried yoga, start as a beginner. We all did this! You are going to experience tightness, awkwardness, shortness of breath, and confusion. But, hey, that’s life. When you get through the class, and end in final resting posture (Savasana), you will find a stillness in your mind, and peacefulness in your heart. Give it a shot, it just might save your life.

Comment, share, follow, and keep on breathing. Cheers, Deb

5 reasons I want to get old

Happiness

You might be thinking that I am crazy for wanting to get old, but here’s the fact, Jack: you are all getting older every second just like me, so you might as well like it. For some reason, I have always relished the thought of living into my 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s. These decades seem to bring the promise of freedom and less responsibility. In many ways, getting past retirement age will be a little like being under the age of 16, without the schooling part. WHEE!!!

Number 1: Losing the children in your household has proven to be a mood elevator. For many, the “empty nest syndrome” leaves a feeling of depression and lack of motivation from losing that person or persons you need to care for on a daily basis. But, many reports state it can lead to more freedom, causing optimistic feelings and a closer relationship to your partner that you may have been feeling separation from. Good news indeed.

Number 2: It is a common misperception that aging will leave you physically frail and prone to health issues. While this may be true for some, it happens that regular exercise will prevent many of these side effects of aging, even if it catches up with you eventually. More and more folks are finding better health after retirement because they have more time to work out, develop friendships with others that exercise, and focus more on feeling well, rather than worrying about their physical appearance.

Number 3: Older and wiser. Yes, it’s true that being advanced in age will certainly give you a wider perspective, because, let’s face it, you’ve seen a lot of stuff. The amount of stuff you live through really does diminish feeling “crisis mode” every time some little thing happens. A study done at the University of Michigan showed people over 60 could offer a wider variety of options to people facing issues.

Number 4: You will feel more optimistic and less pessimistic with age. A study at Stanford recorded reactions to positive and negative pictures in the brains of people of all ages. Those over the age of 70 reacted much more to the positive photos. They were less likely to recall the negative ones. Kind of a “viewing life through rose-colored glasses” affect. Super!

Number 5: People that age successfully find more “self love”. They finally realize that it is true that you have to love yourself before you can have that feeling for others. I think that in my own experience, I see that things I have done “wrong” shouldn’t really be categorized as such. “Wrong” options are simply “learning opportunities” and I give myself permission to learn in this life. So, through this notion, I am being kinder to myself and allowing myself to experience all that life presents to me. I don’t have to flagellate myself every time I am learning something difficult.

So there you have it. There are many more benefits of aging than the ones I have listed here. Take heart, and look positively into the future, because it’s going to be a blast!

Have a great Friday. Cheers, Deb

Free Audible

On Amazon: paperback, Kindle, and Audible

Have you ever listened to a book on tape? Perhaps you have listened while taking a long car trip. I once did this on a 12 hour drive to Illinois. I heard the second book of the Kingsbridge series from Ken Follett, “World Without End”. The series is great, and it’s made even better by real voices that put you in the action.

Time passes a little faster when you are engaged in a story. Take running on the treadmill, for example. Running, even if you’re outside, can become tedious. For this reason, I have downloaded podcasts to entertain me while completing the task.

The reason I am bringing it up, is that right now, you can listen to my book, “Nick and Me”, on Amazon Audible for FREE and receive 2 free weeks of audible. If you don’t want to continue the subscription, you just cancel. You may find that it’s worth it to be entertained if you drive or exercise a lot. You might also just listen while cleaning the house, etc.

Here’s the book blurb:

Tensions flare and emotions explode as four very different people try living in harmony.
Nick is the older brother, and he is a bully.
Sionna is the love of his life.
Ma needs care and attention.
It’s a full-time job becoming an adult.

Just in time for cozy reading: “Nick and Me” in audio. Bobby Gaglini narrates the story of a young man from Milwaukee with just the right tone. The characters come alive, and we can feel the tension.
Not an Amazon Audible user? No problem. Use the following code to get your trial 2-weeks and listen to “Nick and Me” free! You might find out you like listening while you drive….

Just use the link below to get your free copy. I have to add an endorsement to Bobby Gaglini, the voice of my book. He did an awesome job nailing the Milwaukee accent used throughout.

Click the link above!!!

I hope you enjoy your listen. Please share and comment below if you like. By the way…..screenplay is in the works.

Cheers, and happy weekend, Deb

Looky, Looky

Egyptian cosmetics

Have you stopped worrying about what you look like yet? How old are you, and do you really care? People tend to think the obsession with personal appearance has just ramped up this century, probably since the beginning of television, movies, and social media – that somehow we are more obsessed with our looks now more than ever. But I am here to tell you that the obsession with personal appearance has been going on for a lot longer than that. One article states that ancient Egyptians were so obsessed with their own appearance, that “some spells from The Egyptian Book of the Dead stipulate that one cannot speak them in the afterlife if one is not clean and presentable, and it is clear this means in a physical sense” (Ancient History Encyclopedia).

During the reign of Elizabeth I, the hot look every woman went for was a huge, freckle-free forehead….don’t we all? As soon as shaving was available, people started plucking, shaving, and shaping beards and hair on various body parts. The beard popularity cycle has gone up and down through the ages, usually influenced by the leaders of society. Women have endured physical pain to pull in their stomachs with rigid, laced bodices. We have also produced actual physical deformity with foot binding and the wearing of high heels. Personally, I had to give up this silliness with the last two foot surgeries.

What is it that makes us care what people think about our personal appearance? At what age will we finally stop caring, and start accepting the age and the condition we are in? The reason I am asking this question is, I have seen a few friends and acquaintances recently that care waaaayyyy too much for the age they are. One woman took a picture of herself in the most crazy fake eyelashes and almost black lipstick on her puffed-up lips and posted it to facebook with a caption stating something like: “just got a makeover”, or something like that. We didn’t know if it was a joke or real. Some thumbs up, but a couple of laughing faces. Just so you know….it was for real. She’s in her late 50’s. If I see a selfie of someone over the age of 40, I start to lose respect, unless they had to do it for a picture identification or something.

Since I work in an operating room, and we do a lot of plastic surgery, I get it. As a matter of fact, I have done a couple of things to improve the way I look. I was tired of spending my days helping other people achieve their dreams of reducing imperfection, and not helping myself, so I did. Not to worry, I haven’t done anything drastic. I have exercised my entire life, eat a good diet, and generally take care of myself. But I have a “stopping point”, so to speak. This is an inner level of tolerance for the amount of work I will do in order to look acceptable. I won’t get a facelift, or lipo, or work out 7 days a week, but that’s my line.

This is not to say that improvement is bad. Quite the opposite, improvement is just one of the ways we take pride in ourselves, display our positive self-image, and generally become a person whom others will not be repelled by. But at this time in my life, I’m starting to feel that for me, I have had just about enough. Not wearing makeup to the store – okay. Maybe not wearing makeup all day – okay. Not washing my hair before going to work – always okay because I wear a cap. Appreciating my stumpy, cellulite-ridden legs because they take me where I want to go. I feel gratitude I can walk, and dance, and touch my toes. Realizing I won’t be a bodybuilder – okay. Realizing I won’t climb a 14er or run a marathon, because I really don’t care and don’t want to put in the effort at my age – all okay.

I’m writing to you today to get some feedback. Where do you draw the line? Is it an age, or just a maturity level? Some people never seem to care, and I’ve noticed that the younger people are, the less they really care what someone else thinks. I feel this is a good thing, that maybe we are starting not to compare ourselves to others. Maybe we are starting to measure our self-worth by the deepness of our thoughts, or the openness of our hearts. Media be damned! It’s time to limit our exposure to toxic thought processes that do nothing to enhance our insides and well as our outsides.

Shoot me a comment, follow for more stuff, and have a great week. Cheers, Deb