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AMBER LOVE 15-DEC-2017 Content is supported by the generous backers at Patreon.com/amberunmasked and through book sales. Please remember to leave your own reviews on Amazon if you’ve enjoyed any of my novels or comics. I’m also an Amazon Influencer with a direct list of books, yoga supplies, witchcraft suplies, cat things, and writer novelties.

It’s the end of 2017 and everyone is either posting their “Best of” lists, “2018 Goals,” or “2017 Achievements.” They’re pretty fun to read if you have the time. I like to make the lists too and if I can manage to get that writing time in, I will.

Gus in the snow

For now, I’ll point out that I did have some personal achievements. MISCARRIAGE OF JUSTICE and MISTY MURDER were completed and released. The long overdue Athena Voltaire: Pulp Tales anthology of short stories with illustrations finally became available. I suffered more health setbacks, but finally used my state insurance which I now have panic attacks about losing; however, I got pain and anxiety meds a year ago. I completed 200 hours of yoga teacher training. I tried walking Gus on a leash and he loved it so much that we go out almost every day; I’ve written over 30 stories about his adventures with Oliver in The Winchester-Nabu Detective Agency.

My Yoga Journey Continues:

I’d say that’s pretty respectable even if I’m still not drawing a better income or working in my field yet. Truthfully, getting back into yoga after years away and a lax stay-at-home practice, I felt good to have achieved something even if it’s not a professional standing yet. The personal barriers were there and I honestly had so many times I didn’t think I’d finish. There were people of much more physical prowess going through the training and all of them were already part of the same studio as practitioners so they knew each other and had a sense of community. It was summer which I hate. There was a lot outside where I tried to keep my skin safe from the sun and bugs. My phobias kicked in during meditation. My period took me out of the game for days and I cried with my legs up the wall and could only listen to the training. But I learned that even those more experienced people, more flexible and more strong, they were in pain too. They were tired too. They were missing home.

Look Back at Yoga for Writers

From July to now, I’ve tried to stay committed to my own practice while figuring out how to find people to teach. I need X amount of hours plus CPR/First Aid certification in order to even join the Yoga Alliance. I can’t consider that (even though I’m not so sure what the benefit is other than all jobs expect it) until I have classes to teach in order to log my time. Nonetheless, I get on my mat at home several times a week. I’ll admit it’s not every day especially because of the hour-long walks with Gus which are twice a day in the better weather. At the very least, I get down to do my back exercises, postures, and vinyasas to manage some of the pain even if that’s only for 15 minutes.

A while ago, I tried to see if I was strong enough to get into Wheel Pose (Urdhva Dhanurasana) and I couldn’t do it. I wasn’t surprised at all. I still didn’t last in one-legged bridge poses for more than two seconds. My arms have never been particularly strong but were stronger for sure, years ago. That day when I tried was significant only because I wasn’t afraid to try. I don’t remember the date, but I can picture the moment in my head clearly.

Yesterday, I wasn’t feeling like I was half-asleep with fatigue as I often am like today (thanks to being up for hours with Gus crying in the middle of the night). I still hadn’t gotten a great night’s sleep and I did have twice the amount of coffee as usual. I got down on the mat was going to challenge myself in spine extension work.

Wheel Demo

For the first time in 10 years I was able to get into Wheel Pose without rolling over a pilates ball. Back in the day, I was constantly doing pilates and 120 lbs. But also after losing my gall bladder I was taking Vicodin for the pain. (It has been the best pain med ever for my pain & because of surgery fears I was barely eating back then). Then last year’s ER episode with herniated discs & spasms I wasn’t sure I’d recover because through PT I still had high pain or immobile days. It’s not a great wheel or even a good wheel. I felt my feet turn out immediately when they did so my knees hurt still, hours later. My back twinged for a little while but it’s fine. Maybe I was to do it because now I take a different kind of pain med twice a day instead of begging for Vicodin that doctors are under pressure not to prescribe. But it’s my first wheel.

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