Dropped the ball

So as it turns out I’m not Wonder Woman after all. I can’t write and meditate and blog and strength train and get in 10 thousand steps and teach Power Yoga and clean the studio and walk Boomer.

Today I crashed and burned.

No writing. No meditation this morning either. (But that will get done before bed and I am posting this blog now.)


I dropped the writing ball and that is making me frustrated and sad. I will re-start  tomorrow with a “double,” but this was not how I wanted my day to roll.

The problem was I tried to add one more thing and that one more thing caused the whole structure of my day to come crashing down.

The thing I tried to add was steps. Ten thousand of them. I need to move more but moving’s at odds with sitting and writing.

How do writers like Murakami do it? How do they manage to train and run marathons and write novels at the same time? I’ve read his book on this subject and he makes it sound so sane and effortless, but it’s on the verge of impossible.

G and I have challenged each other to log 10K steps on our Garmins every day. She does this easily, so she set her goal at 15K. I barely get 5K on a good day. The only physical stuff I do is some yoga and my twice a week sessions with Vince, which is not enough.

So I am going to be walking to and from the studio and looking for other opportunities to log steps. But I also have to log words.

I have to figure this out, and I will.

Stay tuned.

Cleaning, blah

I spent all day cleaning: mopping, cleaning out cabinets, doing dishes, organizing.

At the end of 5 hours, there was still a lot to do.

Cleaning is the act of rolling a boulder up a mountain, getting to the top, then watching it roll back down.

Cleaning is never done. It is like eating. You push away from the Thanksgiving table believing you will never eat again, only to wake up the next day ravenous.

Today I took before and after pictures, and it appeared so little got done, considering how long I was at it.

I think:  Do daily maintenance cleaning! That way it won’t get so out of hand.

But do I?


Maintenance cleaning takes discipline, and I don’t have it for cleaning like I do for meditation or blogging or writing.

If I did, I wouldn’t have spent this whole Saturday cleaning.


Tooth of Doom

My tooth of doom. Number 15. Upper left, all the way in the back. My periodontist has been “worried” about this tooth for years. Every time I go he says, “I’m worried about this tooth.”

Every time he says that I think to myself: “I’m gonna die with this goddamn tooth, Buster.” He’s cute, but a little bit of an Eeyore, my periodontist. When he talks to me with his dental loupes on, I can’t figure out where to look.

Too many eyes to worry about.

Dentist wearing loupes

I’m pretty sure he doesn’t stay up at night worried about my tooth number 15.

But last night I was up worried about tooth number 15. In the last week or so I have been feeling a little, what? Nudgie back there? I opened my mouth to eat one day and there was some TMJ-ish kinda ouchy. But it went away. Then last night I woke up with a mean headache behind my left eye. Tooth of Doom acting up?

Dr. Eeyore  found a little inflammation in tooth 15, and also in my fang (tooth 11) so he squirted some antibiotic in both of those gum areas and I’m to call him in a week with a report. We shall see.

On the food front, I am still craving coffee, and especially so this morning when I woke tired from fractured sleep. I eyed my Verismo with longing and could practically smell the Ethiopian Yirgacheffe.


I am going to have to talk to Jennifer about this.

I then drove to Culligan to pick up water for home and the studio. The spunky dude who loaded my car with the water read my bumper sticker and said, “I don’t get it.”

I said, “It’s sarcastic.”

My bumper sticker says: “At least the war on the environment is going well.”

I thought of trying to explain it to him. But no.

Today was Day 2 of my attempted yoga streak. I practiced with my late class and that totally counts, even though I feel guilty practicing with them. Better that than letting my practice die.

So I’m all set in my Fundies today.

Another day.


Getting Tired of This Detox Life

So it is 3 weeks today of this austerity diet and I am getting tired. Literally tired. I want one cup of coffee. That’s all. One cup of coffee in the morning.

But then last night, I also wanted one glass of wine. One glass of wine. In the evening. Is that so bad? But I know what that will lead to. I do. It will lead to gelato, and gin and tonics on the deck, and beer, and then I will be back to my old ways.

But I ask myself: what is so bad about those old ways? And my answer is: crummy sleep, a black tongue, some flab around the middle.

And I think I just talked myself out of wanting my coffee in the morning.

But this is what I wonder: could I just have the coffee and not the other stuff? Just the coffee? Make that my only bad habit? Stay away from alcohol and sweet things? Could I adjust my streak? Let the coffee streak die, but keep the alcohol and sugar streak going a bit longer?

I don’t know. I think Gretchen Rubin is right about abstaining. Sometimes abstaining is easier than moderating.

Is coffee my gateway drug? I really don’t think so. I think alcohol is my gateway drug.

Alcohol leads me into sweets and other food temptations, like cheese and chips and other kinds of happy hour food, and it lowers my resistance to sugar. For some reason I always want something sweet when I am drinking wine. I don’t seek sugar as much if at all when I am drinking gin. But I do when I drink beer.

I think alcohol is the stupidest drug of all. I wish cannabis would hurry up and be legalized already. It is such a better high, though there IS the problem of munchies, which is not to be discounted.

So did I just talk myself out of breaking my streak? I think so. What I have been thinking is that I will break it when we go to Sanibel at the end of May.

I don’t really think I can last that long, but I am going to try. I am at least going to keep going until the end of April. These austerities are my own little “April Challenge.”

Winter, enough.

I am sitting here on the couch with the headphones on because the basketball game is on and I can’t really write with that blithering in my head.

I am in my 2nd day of no coffee and I think my eyes are getting worse, not better. I know 2 days isn’t much, but I wanted to see at least a little improvement. (I am so dull without the charge of coffee. It makes me sad.)

So far I have been able to keep pretty optimistic with this endless winter, but today I couldn’t pull it off. It was cold and dreary when I got up, and as the morning progressed, the day got darker rather than lighter, and as I was getting ready to go to the gym, I heard thunder. And then it started to rain. Hard.

I can see the window reflected in the bathroom mirror. I could see the gloom and the rain, and then I refocused on my face, and my red puffy right eyelid, and the beginning of the same situation on my left eyelid.

(2 days without coffee, alcohol and sugar. Things should be better.)

The end of March.

(Things should be better than this).

I wanted nothing more than to sit in my pajamas and read and sleep all day. But I got myself to the gym, and did what I was told, and left the gym and went home and washed my hands and had some food, and got to my 1 o’clock appointment.

(All this is very dull.)

And then I went to yoga, and class was good, but all I could think of was going home, getting into my pajamas and sitting here even though I had no idea what the theme of the day should be.

I hate to complain. I hate to hear people complaining. Yet all I want to do is give in to my sadness about the weather and complain.

I have been trying so hard all winter to go with the flow, to control the controllables and accept what is out of my control. But today I just couldn’t. I actively hated the weather.

I miss sun so much. And warmth.

(My client walked in all sun tanned from a month in Florida.)

All I need is sun. To lay in. To bask in. And then I will be fine.

All I need is sun to be happy. It is not going to happen in the foreseeable future, though.

This is why when it gets to be fall, and everyone is all rhapsodic about the leaves and how beautiful they are, all I can think about is that this day is coming, this day of unendurable cold and wet and miserable after a winter of stabbing cold.

But we do endure, don’t we?

I hope you are in a place of sun and color. I hope I will soon be in that place, too.


No Coffee, No Prana

I love coffee so much. I have an Verismo espresso machine, a milk frother to make lattes, , a pour-over thing if I want a one cup of perfectly brewed coffee, and a hot water kettle with a goose-neck spout for directing the hot water precisely over the grounds. I also have a  french press for when I want 2 cups.

My daughter manages a Starbucks in Portland, and she has educated me on so many aspects of coffee and coffee culture and I love that we both share this hobby, this love of the bean.

My favorite coffees tend to come from Africa. I love Ethiopian Yirgacheffe coffee the most. The thought of the taste of that coffee is the only thing that has gotten me out of bed this winter, which is now in day 857.

One cup of perfectly brewed Ethiopian Yirgacheffe, sipped in reverential silence, is my drug of choice.

Today was Day 1 of trying to get rid of coffee to see if it helps my eczemic eye.

Without coffee I feel dumb. Without coffee I do not sparkle. Without coffee I have no motivation to do anything except nap. All day I walked around in a funk.

Thank god it wasn’t my night to teach, but I did go to class. It was the perfect class, too: a meditative flow. Anything more vigorous and I wouldn’t have made it. At the start of class we were asked, on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being extremely high energy, what our energy number was. I held up 1 finger, and I thought of making it my middle one.

Patabhi Jois, the father of Ashtanga Yoga, is reputed  to have said, “No coffee, no prana.”

He got that right.


Circling the drain at tax time

Today I got around to doing my taxes and it turns out, for the 11th year in a row, I made no money.

Once again, I operated at a loss.

I am really a happy person as long as I don’t have to consciously face the fact that I make no money. But as soon as I have to add up all the numbers, I get really depressed, and sad, and I begin to seriously wonder:

What the hell am I doing??

What kind of dream world do I think I am I living in that I think I can afford to go tripping merrily along, teaching my classes, working on my little projects, while other people underwrite my existence?

(Apparently I am a freaking genius, though, at getting other people to fund my existence.)

Bur how fair is this? I should be making a living wage, right? Funding my own existence. Pulling my weight. But instead, a bunch of people (who love me) underwrite me and my schemes.

And I know they love me. And I know that I am not an impostion on them, and in some way it is okay that I live like this. But still, at tax time, when I see it all laid out in horrible numbered columns on an Excel spreadsheet? I begin to circle the drain.

It’s pretty terrifying.

What am I doing wrong? Am I a failure? Am I devaluing myself? Should I be charging more? Should I give up the lounge and reduce my rent?

How come ordinarily it feels so wonderfully perfect to be doing what I am doing, and yet at tax time when I see that I don’t make a dime I get so depressed?

A few months ago I went through this Money Map thing. It was an extensive series of exercises that had me put a dollar value on everything I did. Everything. It took me a long time to complete, not to mention a lot of soul-searching, but at the end I had figured out how much money I would have to make, per month, to be “Minimally happy”, then “Preferably happy”, and finally, “Fantastically happy.”

I just now looked up that exercise and laughted.


And then I just re-read my post from last night where I was blithering on and on about my amped life, my great classes, my wonderful students, my new client, and now today?

I feel like shit. I feel like I have been undervaluing myself.

And yet I know (because I had to do all that Money Map research) that in my market, I can’t charge any more than I am for what I do.

So what do I do?