Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Back to Mysore class

This week I turned a corner in my journey back to health after the brain surgery last October. I'd been to see a neurologist in Brisbane last week. He cut back the anti-seizure medication I've been on - thinking that this might help with the lack of energy I'd been experiencing for months. And it seems to have worked - I have been feeling a lot more energised since then!

And on the yoga front - ashtanga people will understand the lure of Mysore-style classes. Back in February when I had to give up going to Mysore classes in Suffolk Park (double whammy of a 40 minutes drive away coupled with a 6.30 start!), I at least knew there was someone giving ashtanga classes much closer to home, which included one Mysore-style class a week. So when my energy levels recovered a bit I knew I'd be able to go there. Which I did, but unfortunately that didn't last. The class location had to move and although still very local, it went down to 2 led ashtanga classes a week only.

So anyway, I suddenly realised I probably now had the energy for one or two early morning long drives a week, and on Monday I finally got back to Christian's class! Felt so great ... and hopefully my energy and determination will continue! 

(Note: did have the alarm set for this morning but didn't make it this time ... sigh! Will have to be next week but I do feel I'm on the road back!!)

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad Air

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Lovely weekend in Sydney and ...

Had a really lovely weekend in Sydney a few days ago ... invited by John and Gina - on the pretext of it being my birthday, plus the lure of visiting some open gardens up in the Southern Highlands, where I grew up. A lot of eating of wonderful food ensued!! Gina cooked a wonderful dinner in Friday night - including a delicious roasted cauliflower with amazing porcini and I can't remember what else dressing!

Then on Saturday we went for lunch at my nephew Peter's house (barbecued swordfish, roast potatoes and salad!) and spent time with his young daughter Chloe (just over a year old) and of course Tammy, who produced a spectacular birthday cake!!
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Out for dinner to a nice Japanese place that night .... it was all starting to remind me of the amazing gourmet food and wine-filled weekends that Angela and I used to have at my parents' place, after which we'd feel like swearing off eating for days!!

And on Sunday we drove up to the Southern Highlands to visit some of the open gardens. Which included one that had been my parents' home in the 70s! I never actually lived there but I remember that my sister and John had their wedding 'reception' there - marquee on the back lawn and everything! Not to mention I seem to remember both of us wearing Laura Ashley dresses!! (Gawd!!) 

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Anyway, I talked to the current owner who was very interested to hear some of the history of the place. The actual house was about three times the size it had been when my parents had it, but it was still nice to see it all again! (And we don't need to mention lunch at the wonderful Burrawang Pub!)

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Back home on Monday to singing, choir rehearsals and piano practice ... have I mentioned that I've started learning piano again? Had to buy a new piano keyboard with weighted keys etc ... I'm really loving it, even though the last time I touched a piano keyboard was when I was about 13!

And (last bit, promise!) today I finally went to a yoga class again! Led ashtanga not Mysore, but still so good to finally get back to the intensity of a class as opposed to my somewhat desultory home practice, which I can far too easily put off till tomorrow!!

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Recovery from the big op!

Today I finally did something I should have done ages ago. I went to the interwebs looking for information on how long it takes to recover from a meningioma operation. (See previous posts if you don't know what I'm talking about!!) I'd been told to expect to be tired for ages, and that this was normal for any brain operation. But - I'd been given a period of 3 months before I could drive again, and somehow I thought that once that 3-month period was over, I would be 100% recovered.

So I couldn't understand why I still feel tired a lot of the time over 4 months after the op. And, spilling over from that, when I've had a tiring day, if I'm not careful it can carry on into the next day. It's been an incredibly hot summer here, and I was wondering if that was the cause of the tiredness, but it didn't seem likely.

Just this week I've had to stop going to a 6.30am yoga class because it was a 40 minute drive away and I realised I just couldn't handle the early start + long drive. At least there is another Mysore class held locally once a week, although still a 6.30am start. And then yesterday in my singing class, (the day after a very tiring day in Brisbane) I once again came over all faint and had to sit down on the floor with a glass of water, feeling rather foolish! (And this is not the first time this has happened since the op!!)

So anyway, today I went to Doctor Google, and there discovered that it can easily take a year before one is completely recovered. One person quoted a doctor as saying 'the mean recovery time was 2 years'. Which means that 50% would take less than 2 years, but 50% would take more!!!

Rather than freaking me out, this was actually a great relief for me! At least this explains what's been happening to me, and I can feel fairly confident that 'this too will pass', if not for a few more months! I can live with that, and can make changes to what I'm doing re yoga classes and singing, to accommodate this. And even hope that eventually I will be able to go back to Christian's yoga class! 

Monday, January 02, 2017

NYE resolutions and all that!

Some January's I'm full of great sounding New Year's resolutions. Usually they fall by the wayside, but occasionally some do resonate through the year. I saw a blog post by the wonderful opera singer Joyce DiDonato about her suggested resolutions for 2017, and they did speak to me ... particularly the one about Practicing (singing, music) with Purpose. So I think I'm going to appropriate a couple of hers and see how they pan out! (Of course that one would fit it well with other parts of my life too!)

I also saw a videoclip on Facebook - an interview with the amazing English pianist James Rhodes, about his new book 'How to Play the Piano'. From what I understand, this book is about learning (or re-learning) to play the piano, and to play one Bach piece in 6 weeks! (It does involve serious commitment to daily practice etc!!) And he quoted an email he'd got from someone who'd recently retired, saying that doing this - immersing himself in music, learning to play an instrument etc, had made it the best time of his life. I could say the same for my life (brain surgery notwithstanding!), but of course I do know there are other reasons besides music for this!

And joy oh joy, I'm allowed to drive again from the 13th January. Which means I'll be able to go back to my yoga class in Byron (or Suffolk Park as it is now, even further away!) However ...

I know I posted somewhere about re-starting my yoga practice a week or two after I got home from hospital.  But then I got hit by all these totally unexpected bouts of total exhaustion ... yes, 'unexpected' despite the many warnings I'd had about this, especially if I tried to do too much! Like spend weeks driving (being driven) to and from Lismore for rehearsals etc etc!! I thought I was fine at the time but I think I was just running on adrenaline!!

Anyway, my yoga practice disappeared down a black hole, and I've really only started again a week ago. The first day I practiced again I couldn't even touch my fingertips to the floor! And I still haven't got to the end of the standing poses even though I'm leaving a few poses out. I can at least touch my knuckles to the floor now so I guess that's some kind of progress!!

I really should have learnt this lesson from previous times! Not a good idea to stop practicing for more than a few days, specially when your body isn't that young any more!! Ah well, another life lesson in not being attached to wherever my yoga practice may have been ...

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad Air


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