Girthy Girl Yoga

Girthy Girl Yoga

Charlie Chaplain said, “To truly laugh, you must be able to take your pain and play with it.”

Regular readers of the blog have watched me play around with my pain on sooo many levels. Over the past few years, I’ve given you guffaw-worthy glimpses into personal tribulations:

  • Culinary incompetence
  • Adjustments, warnings, and diagnoses from Back Guy (who claims there are no adjustments for my problems), Eye Guy (who reminds me I’m always a few clicks off normal), and Doc Guy (who tries to keep my endocrine chain gang from, well, ganging up on me)
  • Feline calamities
  • Discombobulating insomnia (We can add in sleepwalking, but that’s a post for another day…)
  • CIRCUS performances (For my new readers, this is not the fun kind of circus with popcorn and balloon animal sculptures; I can’t sell tickets to my CIRCUS, and keeping a ringmaster on payroll has been next to impossible.)
  • The arrival of Couch Lady (All joking aside, if your body and brain aren’t going in the same direction, get a friend or a pro to sync those babies up.)
  • Wonky and wayward not-rows-of-ducks, a misbehaving Muse, and conversations with a concrete goose (Now you see the need for the Couch Lady.)

Basically, transparency and life and my real attempts at goals in and around real life.

The ability to laugh at myself—and maybe put a smile in your day.

Taking pain and playing with it.

But all that living? I’m tense. Intensely tense.

This brings me to the newest bullet point:

  • Girthy Girl Yoga

In all honesty, this episode happened months—months!—ago. It took me quite some time (and a Monday deadline) to muster up the oomph to “play” with this one. To laugh instead of ball up and bawl.

A little background: A friend and I were discussing the rare sensation of finding total relaxation. Mushy muscles, brain on pause, and total peace that I’ve only found a half dozen times in the last decade before it slips through my fingers.

She mentioned she can hit that “Zen” after a good yoga session.

I’d never considered this activity, but it was worth a try because CIRCUS! and ducks not in a row and endocrine chain gang and body/brain misfiring so badly that Little Miss Muse appears well-mannered in comparison.

What I didn’t consider, dear Reader, is that this friend is not a girthy girl, but I digress.

In search of that elusive “mush,” I was all in.

I bought a yoga mat. Purple to please Little Miss.

Little Miss Muse wasn’t pleased, all judgey judgey as I unrolled the mat. “You’re gonna flop on your face.” 

“It’ll be fine.” I You-Tubed Yoga:

  • Yoga for Beginners
  • Yoga 101
  • Yoga for Dummies
  • Yoga for those girthy ones who haven’t stretched particular muscle groups in the last 20 years and serve as Ringmaster General for the CIRCUS!

(Okay, YouTube didn’t have that last one, but they should look into that.)

I chose a 101 thing and situated my mat, groovy side up (yeah, I know. I mean, I know now), and sat on my office floor like the instructor showed…

An instructor who was also not a girthy girl and probably not even human and did not know what 101 meant.

101 means I know

  • Nothing
  • Nada
  • Zip
  • Zilch

about yoga.

But she didn’t care. And I tried. I really, really tried.

I copied her positions. Standing on one foot. The other foot. Timing the breathing with the movements (Coordination ain’t my strong suit lady, and you’re throwing vocabulary words that I must google every thirty-eight seconds, so…)

And, although I was in the privacy of my home, I was far from alone. I had an audience of three. Strike that. Five. I had five pairs of eyeballs on my first attempt at yoga.

  1. Amara voiced her concern and pounced from chair to desktop to floor. She was certain five o’clock wet food wouldn’t happen if Mother was in a knot.
  2. Stella threw judgment from the top of the cat tree. Mother is malfunctioning. “We’re all gonna die.” (I swear that’s the only song she knows these days.)
  3. Malachi believed Mother needed every single body part that wasn’t already screaming stepped on (with his toes out, of course).
  4. Little Miss Muse, that impatient chonk of an imp, reminded me, “You’re gonna flop on your face.”
  5. Trudi, my concrete office goose. Poor Trudi, permanently cast in cement but with a heart of gold. “I approve of this. Or you’ll end up like me, all stoved up and stiff for the rest of your life.”

Well, I didn’t want to have the mobility of a concrete lawn ornament, so I kept going.

On the last position is when it happened. Don’t ask what the name of it was. I don’t recall. But my butt was in the air, my forehead to the floor, limbs shaking, when my lack of coordination, strength, general frustration with myself, and those stupid mat grooves ganged up on me…(yeah, I know, groovy side down).

Blood rushed to areas of my body I didn’t know I had. None of it was left in my head (or maybe that’s where all of it went all at once), and those purple grooves began to wave and bulge and wiggle. Lifted right up into my vision, all four dimensional, they did. I became massively dizzy, and Little Miss Muse’s station as a prophetess came to be:

I flopped on my right face cheek. Hard.

My body simply gave up, and the grooves filled with wetness... Blood? Sweat? Tears? Drool?

Not sure. But my whole being just…


The thud scattered the cats, Little Miss accidentally shot off her last bottle rocket, and Trudi—cast in stone though she may be—flinched. Yeah, there was pain.  

But, hey, aside from the pulsing in that right face cheek, I achieved mush, ya’ll. 

I don’t know how long I stayed down until I could move.

It wasn’t pretty. It wasn’t to form. It would make any yoga instructor on the planet roll up their mat (groovy side out) and beat me with it.

But I got all my muscles to mush and that was the point.

I’ve since used an app that works much better (thanks again to the friend for that recommendation). One that really is for beginners and doesn’t send me to google new words each session. And sometimes, sometimes, I can find mush without eating floor.

The cats know the purple yoga mat means it’s time for Mother to malfunction, and they can’t even anymore, so my audience is down to two. Little Miss knows I can stay longer in the writer’s chair when I can find mush at least a couple of times a week. And Trudi cheers me on while Little Miss organizes stilettoes and bottle rockets.

Here’s hoping your holiday season is filled with much more mush than pain. And if there must be pain, I hope at some point, you’ll be able to play with it.

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