Sunday, January 31, 2010

My Yoga Experience

Rodney Yee has appeared in many books, DVDs, a...
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Last fall I pulled some some muscles in my right arm.  Instead of getting better, it had gotten where I could barely lift it shoulder height.   By December I would wake up with it curled & locked tight against my body.    My left wrist was now strained from doing the work of both arms.  And if that wasn’t enough, I wacked the inside of my right ankle.  It was so swollen and had built up so much fluid that I was constantly limping, couldn’t put a sock on & couldn’t put it under the bedcovers –it was that tender.  

Just knew going to the doctor would mean being prescribed muscle relaxers, draining fluid off my ankle, maybe steroid shots and talk about physical therapy.  Decided I needed to try something -anything before going that route.   

Several years ago I had been given the AM/PM yoga tape with Rodney Yee and Patricia Walden.   At that time the gentle stretches didn’t seem much of a challenge, so it went into a drawer forgotten until 8 weeks ago.     I set a goal; would do the AM tape every morning before going outside for 21 days straight and do the PM tape a minimum of 3 times a week.  Doing something 21 times consistently is the average time it takes to build a habit.

By the third morning I was no longer waking up with my arm in a tight curl and I could lift my arm a little bit beyond shoulder height.   At the end of that first week I could lift my arm up straight up in the air.  The swelling in my ankle would be noticeably less each morning and it didn’t wake me up in the middle of the night anymore.  When I did the PM tape I notice the most relief with the ankle, so that was enough to keep me making time for the PM session.

By the end of the second week my pants were getting longer on me…had toned up my thighs and bottom enough that my clothes were hanging nicer on me. Was rarely out of breath, my posture was better, and I only noticed a slight tenderness in my ankle in the evening.  Now after 8 weeks my tummy is much flatter-rolls are gone & midriff is shrinking, and the only thing I’m doing different is a few minutes of Yoga every morning.    

The AM tape takes about 18 to complete.  This particular tape is meant for folks who are not into exercise, he not a stickler with getting the pose just so-that will come the more you do it.   About 5 minutes of the tape is spent doing a conscious relaxation –which proved to be a bit difficult for me to get the hang of really relaxing.   But it has made me realize what sort of chatter was going on in my head.   Most of my thoughts were going over the day before or jumping to tomorrow-hardly any time being spent in the here and now.  

So now not only is my body feeling & looking better; but have noticed a difference in my mental state.  There is no long an over abundance of useless chatter going on in my head from the day before.   No more flitting from one thing to another, am more focused, and by the end of the day instead of feeling exhausted, it’s a good tired  and feel happy with what I have accomplished during the day .  

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Monday, January 4, 2010

My Friend Linda

Raising goats has given me many friends, but Linda Graham particularly has touched me deeply.  Her Nigerians, LaMancha's & Mini LaMancha's couldn't have had a better caregiver.   She loved her chickens, loved to cook, and once it got warm enough to dig in the dirt, she was out planting anything she could.    She had an infectious laugh, a tendency to look on the briaght side of things, and had a heart of gold. 

I never had the pleasure of actually meeting Linda face to face; but between our emails and phone calls back and forth we were close and am grateful that I knew her.  I miss her deeply.

Linda Marie Graham (1952-2009) Share E-mail Visit Guest Book

Linda Marie Graham, 57, of Sherman passed away on Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2009 at her residence. Services will be held at 10:30 a.m., Monday, Jan. 4 at Dannel Funeral Home Chapel. Officiating will be Randy Thompson of Tom Bean Baptist Church, with interment following in West Hill Cemetery. The family will receive visitors at the funeral home on Sunday from 3-5 p.m.

Linda was born March 9, 1952 in Petoskey, Michigan, to George and Louise Berger Luther. She attended Denison schools. On March 8, 2008, she married T.J. Graham, although they had been together since March 15, 1995. Linda befriended the personnel from the 240th Assault Helicopter Company. She designed and maintained the website to tribute their service in the Vietnam conflict. An outstanding homemaker, Linda was the best cook and had the greenest thumb. She was known as the most down-to-earth person.

Linda is survived by her husband; father, George Luther of Waco; mother Louise Curtiss of Manistee, Mich.; sons, Cody Calhoun and wife Melinda of Benton, Ark., and Daniel Graham and wife Stacy of Maybank; daughters, Kris Baur and husband Kirk of McKinney, and Nycol Mosley and husband Michael of Melissa; brother, David Luther and wife Tessie of Grant, Ala.; sisters Janice Thompson and husband Don of Sherman, Eileen Breedlove and husband Guy of Quitman, Cindy Plocher and husband Tony of Quitman, Karen Collins and husband Mark of Quinlan, Sandra Keeley and husband Neal of Draper, Utah; and 13 grandchildren.

Pallbearers will be T.J. Graham, Michael Mosley, Kyle Baur, Don Thompson, Toby Farnham, and Kenny Farnham.

Memorials may be made to Home Hospice of Grayson County, 505 W. Center St., Sherman, TX 75090-7827.

Published in The Herald Democrat on January 3, 2010 print