Random Thoughts: December Edition

Doing a back squat at the gym a few weeks ago.

Doing a back squat at the gym a few weeks ago.

Thought 1:
Tonight at the gym, I lifted 75 lbs over my head! I’m really proud of myself. When I started at Iron Tribe a couple of months ago, I was having doubts about being able to lift the training bar (15 lbs). Of course, I was able to do it, but at first I didn’t have the confidence to try that hard. But I did, and eventually I added on weight and saw that I could lift the bar + weight, and by the end of the first month I’d moved up to the regulation bar for women (35 lbs). I’ve done a back squat at a little over 100 lbs before, but tonight was the first time I tried adding weight on to a push jerk, and it was an incredible feeling of accomplishment.

I’m not crazy over-the-moon about lifting weights, but I do like the workout, and I love my gym. I feel like part of a tribe there. Everyone knows everyone else’s name, and people are accepting of your limitations. No one is a meathead, and no one’s trying to intimidate anyone into lifting heavy or being a badass. We’re all just trying to do our best there together. It’s by far the best gym experience I’ve ever had, though I still miss Bikram on a daily basis. Eventually I’d like to try to fit both into my schedule, but I’m not going to push too hard. One great thing at a time. I’ve got time.

Thought 2:
I was getting acupuncture about a year ago, and really liked it, but the community clinic I visited shut down and then there were no affordable services in my area. A week or so ago, I found out about a new one right down the street from me, and made an appointment for this last Saturday. Just like I remembered, I really loved the session. It’s hard to explain, but there’s something so relaxing about it. I typically pass out within minutes of having the needles placed, and wake up naturally about an hour later. The needles are barely noticeable, and there’s no pain, just a little bit of weird pressure at some points, more like feeling the weight of the top of the needle (the top is just a bit thicker than the shaft) as it quivers above your body.

I was the last person in the clinic that day, and when the acupuncturist came to take out my needles, her dog got out into the clinic, too. Or maybe she let him out, I’m not sure. I’m wondering if it’s the latter, because he ran in the room and instantly made a beeline for me. He was a pit bull mix of some sort, a beautiful, muscular black and white dog. I was still reclined in my chair, just letting that peace roll over me, and he sidled up to me and laid his chin on my shoulder, nose to my cheek, and stared at me. It’s hard to explain, but I felt like it was a gesture of solidarity and support. It was the best possible way to end the session. In hindsight, I should have asked if he was a therapy dog, because he was so calm, and stuck by me until I left (after about 10 minutes of kisses and chin scratches, of course – I love animals). I’m excited to go back next time – the acupuncture is great, but there’s nothing like getting in some dog time.

Thought 3:
While I was at the acupuncture clinic, I saw a sign for a Reiki healer. I’d like to see another one. The last one scared me a little. Or I scared me a little. Either way, I could really use someone’s help in learning how to ground, shield, and straighten out all of this energy. On Saturday, the acupuncturist told me that my aura was muddled. Though I didn’t necessarily trust her to tell me that, since it wasn’t her area of expertise, I know I’m not feeling much more than half OK most of the time – sometimes less than that.

Also at the clinic, I saw a sign for a new school that’s opening in the new year, that will have some new age-y types of health/spirituality classes. I felt like I was meant to see that sign. I can’t wait to find out what kinds of opportunities open up in the new year.

Thought 4:
Trying to figure out how to afford to go home at Christmas, but I’m really having trouble with it. My folks live in NC. I wasn’t able to get a flight ahead of time, so once I’ve got the money towards the end of the week (maybe next week), the flights will be really expensive. Add flight to car rental and cat sitter, and we’re looking at around $1k to go home – not counting the money I’ll lose by taking off a week of work, which is considerably more than the cost to go home. I’m going to have to tell my parents that I can’t afford the trip once again, and once again I’ll break their hearts.

But what’s really getting me down is that my uncle said that my mom was upset at me and talking about it during Thanksgiving. I don’t know what was said; he just said it in passing, but I can only imagine that she’s pissed that I haven’t been home in years. If I had to take an educated stab in the dark, I’d guess that she doesn’t understand how I can take trips to Chicago once a month and not be able to afford to go to NC. I really hope I don’t have to have a conversation with her about how business travel and reimbursements work. I think I’ll look into how expensive it would be to fly them both down here for a trip, instead. Except that they hate it here. Hmmm.

Thought 5:
I should go to bed. It will soon be time to start this whole insane mess over again…

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