Monday, May 30, 2016

Totally Hooked

I don't think I ever really understood what the allure of a sport or martial was until recently.  As of this past Saturday night I would have to say that I am totally addicted to martial arts.  I had the honor and pleasure of sparring with a friend of mine who has practiced and taught MMA for many years.  It was intense, exhilarating and I loved the challenge.  For some reason he decided to spar with me.  He had enough fun that we did it again Sunday night. We plan on doing this again in the future.  I feel honored that he is sparring with and teaching me.  There is a great connection here and no special regards to me other than ability.  I may have lucked out and found my instructor.

I have to thank my ex-husband and my close friend and "second" husband Jeremy for giving me a good grounding in the basics of blocking and striking.  Twenty five years later those basics are still there and appear to be serving me well.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Fun Holiday Saturday

My day started out a little bit on the wrong side.  I overslept badly and was almost two hours late for work.   I was allowed to make up an hour of the time I missed.  I checked for about two hours  I like doing it every now and again to keep in shape and refresh my produce codes.  Then I came home, changed my clothes and opened up my store for the day.  I had quite a rush and had a good day in my shop.

After I closed up for the day I went with my friend and son to our local Saturday Market.  There I visited all my vendor friends.  I finally had my belt shortened.  That eight inches of excess belt end is finally gone.  We had an early dinner from one of the food vendors there.  I tried something new and enjoyed it.  Seasoned beef dumplings, dipping sauces and salad.

I finished off my day by ending up at my local pub where I hung out with friends and got to enjoy a really good classic rock band.    Before the band started a couple of my friends and I sat on the deck taking turns playing guitar, bullshitting and picking each other's brains in general.   Later when the band started playing I ended up dancing and sparring the night away, lol.

I was blessed to have a really great day and see many of the wonderful friends I have made over the years and new ones too.  Good times were had, awesome memories made and a lot of great connecting with others happened.  I had a great time sparring with a good friend who has practiced mixed martial arts for many yeasrs.  He challenged me, encouraged me, gave me tips and did not take it easy on me.  It was exhilarating and I loved every minute of it.  I hope I get to "play" with him again.

p.s.  I did get in a good training session with my sword today too.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Peace, Contentment And The Posta Dance

As I sit here gazing out my front window at my beautiful Snowball bush watching the wind ruffling the leaves and flower balls.  (Actually it is a huge bush, more the size of a small tree.)  I am am contemplating my life and I am very content in my life right now.  I am meeting my obligations.  I am learning and growing as a person in so many ways.   I am finally living my life in the manner I have desired for so long.  I am back to where I need to be as a person.  I have worked hard, struggled a lot and overcome much to get back to this point.  I have a lot of room for improvement, but I am happy.  I have finally found my peace.

Practicing daily with my sword and keeping it close to my side at home is a visible and physical reminder to live my life right.  To walk firmly upon the sacred red road.  In return I get peace, calm and contentment.  I lose worries, regrets, panic attacks, and anxiety.  The physical exercise improves my physical and my mental health.  I find the exercise to e it's own form of meditation.

We have been working with our swords the past three club meetings.  We have been practicing a variety of sword handling exercises and working on our posta dance.   I have learned a couple of new moves.  Today I was able to work my way through the whole dance with the training video. I finally have it down in my head.  To me this is a real achievement.   Especially since I had mangled it so badly at first.

p.s.  I am still doing my push-ups and am training with my sword daily.  Today I practiced for abut a half hour this morning and around an hour this evening.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Captain America, Civil War

I had no idea what I was going to do today.  I was unable to get inspired to do any housework.  I was all ready to spend the day working in the yard, but it is raining so that isn't happening.  I figured I would stretch and train.  But after that I was trying to decide what to do.  Luckily for me the kids decided to go see the Captain America Civil War movie.  It was very excellent as usual.  
I still haven't remembered as much from yesterday's practise as I wish.  Sometimes I get it and sometimes I don't.   After reflecting on the issue for a while I have decided that I need to start a list of terms that are used in martial arts and I need to look up the true definitions.  I may have ageneral knowledge of what something means , but it may not be specific enough.  How can I learn the Armizare terms if I cannot correlate them with their English counterparts.  I think understanding the English terms will help me to learn the Armizare terms.  I have been frustrated with my lack of remembering and using those things.  It is time to solve it.

I haven't engaged my brain in learning and studying like this for many years.  I am definitely rusty at it and the thinking progression I need to improve the cerebral part of learning Armizare.  

I truly believe our minds are very powerful things.  With determination and patience one can train it for amazing results.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

I Refuse

I am finally starting to get back into my routine.  I didn't ever stop stretching, but I stopped doing  push-ups and my free weight training has also been real sketchy.  I have to admit to going days without training with my sword.  Anyway four days in a row of doing my push-ups again.  I am training daily with my sword again too.  It is the easiest as it is my favorite.  

Sensei taught us a couple of fun moves last Saturday.  We practiced those and worked on our sword dance.  He also ran us through some more new things.  I am disappointed as I don't think I am going to be able to remember all of it.  Could have something to do with practicing in wave of spring thunderstorms.  Thor's blessings to us warriors.

I think taking up a sword is one of the better things I have done for myself.  I am finding myself to be a lot more resilient.  Physically and mentally.  This is really a blessing.  After spending so many grey, blah depressed years I fear going back-ever.  I REFUSE    

Monday, May 9, 2016

Reading Jag

I've been on a reading jag the past few weeks.  Every now and then I have to escape and I will do this by reading.  The downside is that it really messes with my sleeping schedule.  Right now at this time of the year, more than ever I need to be kicking things up a notch.  It is the middle of spring and the cycle of yard work-cleaning and weeding has resumed.  I have been working 37 to 40 hours a weeks with occasional overtime on top of everything.  Hmm, maybe that is part of the reason for wanting to escape.

At this point I am not taking good enough care of myself.  I need more sleep.  I have decided to try something different tonight.  I am going to try to use my imagination to go to sleep to tonight.  If I can make this work I will fall asleep a lot quicker.  I've noticed the better the daydream the quicker I fall asleep.

With everything going on my training is also suffering.  I have not lost anymore weight.  On the other hand I have not re-gained any either.  I want to re-watch the anime series that kindled this interest in martial arts.  These ones show an amazing determination and strength of will not only to survive but to exceed and protect those around them.  These help to inspire me to stay my course.  To be that amazing person I know I can be and to keep improving myself.  For those anime characters those traits meant life or death.  I want to think of my training as life or death.  In the long term it may said to be so for the benefits of exercise alone.  I have also noticed that it improves my mental state.  And for me that is very important.  

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Women And Muscles

Until this year I had never aware of the issue that girls shouldn't have muscles.  I have become aware of this after becoming a member of the Esfinges.  I found it rather surprising to hear that guys don't like strong girls.  I have always been fortunate to be in environments that encourage, respect and admire muscles regardless of gender.  I live in Central Oregon.  The town I live in is a hub of innumerable outdoor recreational sports and activities.  About thirty minutes and you can either be in the Cascade Mountains or out in our High Desert.  Then there is all the rural and wild areas of ranches, national forests and BLM land.

I spent my elementary and middle school years living on a large ranch.  (Although we lived on a large ranch my folks ran several decorative building stone claims on the ranch.)  Towards the end of eighth grade my folks moved back to their home town.  I went from being a country girl to a stoner.  As a stoner girl in high school I hung out with the "bad boys".  My strength was an asset and I was respected for it.  I can remember many nights hanging out at the roller rink arm wrestling them.  Or weightlifting and swimming at the local pool.  Then my dad bought the tavern where the loggers hung out and drank at.  Those folks worked hard and they played hard. Muscles were admired and respected regardless of gender.

Monday, May 2, 2016

I'm Never Changing Who I Am

"I'm still the same as I was, now that you understand I'm never changing who I am."  from Imagine Dragon's "It's Time".  

It's not that I am changing.  I am just letting go of the facades I was taught to hide behind and refining the rest. I am learning who I am underneath the false fronts that I was taught to hide myself behind.  I was raised to "be a proper lady".  To be polite, to smile and hide the pain and keep up the appearances, to never rock that proverbial boat.  To suppress and deny myself to please others  I am done hiding and apologizing for being me.  

This is an ongoing process and it is also is a learning process.  I am discovering things about myself that I was unaware of previously.   In learning to allow myself to be me I am learning my own strength, power and value.

Facades and chains seem to go to together.......actually I would have to admit that the facades and false fronts are another type of chain.