Winter woes

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The past 10 weeks have been the most challenging yet rewarding. I have been training to become a Yoga Instructor and have learned beyond the poses and flow.  I was so nervous for the strenuous aspect of becoming a physical expert, I never expected to learn so much about my true soul and inner being. Yoga has a bad reputation for the difficulty in stretching, awkwardness of silence and skepticism in spiritual practices.  It is the connection of mind, body and soul. The acceptance of yourself and the journey within. The ability to see the beauty and light within yourself and share the wisdom and love outside yourself. You develop a philosophy practice and acquire a healthy mindset.

The transition of Fall to Winter is gradually starting to affect me. I am a fan of warmth and the outdoors. I find value in being able to explore the outdoors and be active. I excel in the heat and am a fire sign, so naturally I am always moving at a high speed. With the cold creeping on me, I’ve approached multiple signs for my inner heat and flame to slowly settle. For the past three years, I have gotten a ticket in November for speeding, entered a relationship I wasn’t ready for and experienced a shift emotionally, mentally and spiritually. I generally put on weight, become lazy and have climate depression. With a new awareness, I am wanting to place my energy more positively during the Winter and enjoy every moment. I have accepted nothing will excel if I am negative and nothing will be accomplished with a closed mind. 

I am entering a progressive stage in my life and finally I am aware of my surroundings, the universal signals and temperature reactions. A few weeks ago my training’s education was our Auryvedic element, what essence we are in relation to in the world, times frames we thrive, seasons we respond well to and associations to avoid.  I was shocked to discover I am compatible to the Fall and Winter season and I am balanced with the calming cold.

As much of a scrooge I am to the shivering weather and Christmas spirit, I have secret spot in my heart for the theme of the season. Staying in with family, warming up on the couch and finding ease in the simple things. This season is all about comfort, act of giving and the ability to settle in your happiness. Finding joy with the significant others and sharing warm presence indoors. Being present with your presence and creating the fullest memories is the best gift you can give.

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Deep Drives

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Life is not only a journey but a drive, such a drive where you take each lane, road, construction, detour or traffic as they approach…
Sure there’s a goal destination but it is always comforting to know the route and to have stops along the way. Sometimes we get so caught up in the final arrival we lose track of the ride and scenery along the way. There are times where you coast, enjoy the view on a cruise, accelerate yourself to the top or you fly so fast down hill you don’t realize your own speed.

This past week I participated in my first day of RAGBRAI. For those who don’t know, RAGBRAI is an acronym for…The Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa. It is an annual seven-day bicycle ride across the state of Iowa. RAGBRAI is one of the oldest, largest and longest recreational bicycle touring event in the world. There are towns, communities, businesses and sponsors along the way to not only encourage you and provide for you but also take care of you.

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I was so nervous to par take in this ride because it was my first year, I wasn’t in “bike shape” and I was intimidated by the experienced masses. I got over my fear and proceeded into the crowd with my best friend by my side. I felt like a child going to camp for the first time, anxious and excited. Once you got the first cycle in, you were comfortable and proceeded the path.
It was one of the most challenging and yet uplifting adventures I have endured. I learned so much about the tour, flow of traffic, rush of the vehicles and a took a deeper meaning from the ride.

On my ride, the environment for majority of the day was bikers, open corn fields, family owned farm land, assortments of nature and the road ahead of your bike. You are constantly surrounded by all different people, which all share the same journey as you. Some come for different reasons, traditions, groups, uniforms, celebrations, music, agenda etc. The beauty of it all is, at the end of the day you all arrive to the same destination and all need to work together for a smooth finish.

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You engage with your fellow riders, you signal your move only if it affects them, you speak closely to the one next to you, you assist those on the side of the road, you encourage those at a slower pace and you come in contact with so many groups.
You see those struggling, smiling and pedaling through the same road and it motivates you to do the same. There is no age, size, race, sex or quantity limit … If your desire is to ride, nothing is in your way.

This day was so special to me because everyone came together as one. You approached every person and path with ease. You found joy in the open road and local services. You are not judged for your chosen pit stops or your pace. It is a journey driven by your own given energy and support by those surrounding you.

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On the van are the words “Hope” “Faith” & “Love”

This to me is the simplistic form of life. A glimpse of what your life could be if we all practiced the same equal peace, love and joy with our surrounding participants. The route in RAGBRAI is like our drive in the journey of self discovery and nirvana. All of these people devoting their mind, body and soul to the self-driven adventure. You experience new people and places for different quantities of time.

Every encounter is always seen as fresh and beneficial. You cherish the scenic stroll to your current home or nourishment. You connect with all of those who share your space. Everyone is accepted on the road and appreciated along the way. It is so amazing when a community is brought together and so powerful to be apart of such a blissful movement.

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Lance Armstrong has participated the last six years in RAGBRAI and makes it a point to really get to know the towns and people who make his route. He is able to further his love for cycling and passion of the sport with a different back-drop and crowd. After his incident in 2005, Iowa was his first cycling event since confessing and being called a “cheater.” Iowa has always been supportive of him and accepted him to still be apart of their tour.

He enjoys returning to RAGBRAI and spoke on Iowa and the participants, “I’ve been here before, and I know what the people of the state are like, and I know what the riders of RAGBRAI are like,” he said. “I didn’t expect a wave of hostility.” He then described RAGBRAI to the Des Moines Register as Woodstock meeting the Tour de France meeting something else.

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We are all the driving force and riding influence on this journey of life. We all carry our own baggage and struggles along the way. It is up to us to discover the path ahead of us, understand the pavements given and value the pit stops which make our self-trip all worth it.

Everyone has their own chosen joy ride, Everyone asks for guidance on their trip and Everyone needs headlights in the dark.

NAMASTE.

 

She acts like Summer & Walks Like Rain

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The most beautiful things in life are those we do not expect or label. The simplistic moments which we breathe in with ease and exhale with awareness. Memories where you lose track of time, surroundings, stereotypes and your ego.

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I have a secret love for Summer’s Rain. There’s something so serene about two weather conditions collaborating. The sprinkling of cold drops against your skin calms you as the warmth embraces your goose bumps. You feel a balance and stillness in the moment of forgotten worries. Becoming one with nature, feeling untouchable to conditions and absorbent to your desires.

With the blissful rain falls comes the wild winds and tornado whirls. I was trying to unwind to the rain after a long day, begin some writing then finish with some yoga. The storm took over my zen, lights begin to flicker and thunder shook the house.  I started to fear my outside world, I wanted to badly to feel safe and protected.

My significant other was feeling uneasy about the storm as well, we decided to stay up in the night and fight our frights. My handsome man came in soaking wet from enduring the storm on the walk over. I was so grateful he was willing to take on the tornado winds and fight through the piercing down fall.

We lit candles across the room, we put our phones down and lost ourselves in the moment.  I loved that we had no concept of time. We focused on each other closely as we blocked out the outside noises. All we had was each other and that was the most beautiful gift of all. No distractions, no flashing lights, no notifications, no media and no worries.

I grew frustrated when the storm started, I grew annoyed that none of my technology would be working or charging and I took electricity for granted. We started to sweat without the A.C. and grew a little irritated so we opened the windows to the warm rain… As soon as I smelled the rush of the rain, I forgot about sweating and accepted the release of perspiration. The smell of rain is absolutely breath-taking, it puts me at ease and is so refreshing. Another thing I took for granted, the relaxing aftermath of a storm.

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I learned so much that night, I was so grateful for being alive, for my house being a protectant, for simple moments, for being fully present without technology and for my man being my balance. We laid together tranquil, being satisfied with flusters and escaping our egos to be at peace with the storm. It felt meditative, focusing on our breath, listening to rain’s fall, smelling natures aroma, releasing our moisture and glowing in candle’s light together.

I would do that night over and over again, If I had the chance. To not focus on the things that contribute to your comfortable state but to create your own calm through the storm. We became detached from outside life and only concentrated on what we could do in the current moment.

When you are without power, do you feel powerless? We are so reliant on electricity for our life, we almost let it control our day and moods. I would like to travel or spend time without it and see how my life or memories change.

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I encourage everyone to have a blissful detachment, to find their ease in the excitement of electricity and to feel wholesome with internal life.

Thank you for taking time to read my post! Hope you were inspired or enlightened.

NAMASTE