Into the body, with greater ease

At the end of restorative yoga classes, students’ faces are golden. I watch for the moment when their mouths open, a sure sign that the body is relaxing. An open mouth, a shining face, and a relieved smile show that the parasympathetic is back online.

Three of the past four days, I’ve done my own restorative practice. On Saturday, I stayed forty-five minutes in supported reclining pose and even fell asleep in it for a bit. I emerged from the pose refreshed, energized, and ready to teach two restorative workshops in SF and in Berkeley.

I have been heading into greater ease in my yoga. I wake up and embody. This means about a half-hour lying in the bed doing a body scan mbsr-style with frills. It’s glorious. Then it’s either a slow walk around the hill or asana practice or both. Finally, I sit for awhile.

The asana practice is an improvisational, mindful, kinesthetic exploration. Much softer than I’ve allowed for well over a year; it’s perfect for me right now. I think this must be lingering ease from the retreat I sat last month at Spirit Rock, Grounded and Spacious: A Retreat for Experienced Women Practitioners, with Julie Wester and Anne Cushman, which invited an open schedule and self-practice. Even in my morning sit, I’m feeling more playful and looser than usual. Allowing, grounding, opening.

From Hafiz, via Julie Wester: Now is the time to know that everything you do is sacred. Now is the time to deeply know that everything you do is sacred.

Here is a bunch of roses for you, the Cecil Breuner from my yard. Someone told me this rose tree is probably over sixty years old. She’s heading slowly and steadily toward the wisdom and beauty of a crone, and still blooming like crazy every spring.

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