Opening Hips and Shoulders with Fierce Grace – to heal the trauma of my accident

It was not a very professional transition from the one and only Bikram class with 26 postures to five different classes with lots of new postures in a number of variations.

Re-branding Bikram into Fierce Grace meant teaching trainers and students.

For my dislocated hip and its effects on the rest of my body, it was god sent despite all the hiccups: the Bikram postures could have turned me into a good footballer. Fierce Grace might make a dancer out of me… 🙂

In other words: there’s a lot more to stretch in the hip area that has never been stretched before so that the left hip resembles the right one! As a result, I can’t walk without sticks. But I am convinced that this, too, will pass and that I will come out with a healed hip. The question is when!

10 days ago, the Yoga class inspired me to do for myself what I have done for so many victims of white collar crimes: write a one-page summary.  (more…)

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HOW TO Turn Pain into Pleasure? With YogaBabies!

In my recent Yoga practice I have had major highs, feeling like a million Bradburys, thinking that only your body can let you feel such pinnacles of pleasure.

However, I have also felt more acute pains during my practice than before.

And when I was moaning, whining and complaining about this to my inner monitor, this lovely trainer Kate Comer seems to have sensed it. For she came during one of the exercises and stretched my back. I sobbed and sobbed and sobbed. Why? Because, it was one of these rare occasions where somebody could relate to my experience and acknowledge it in a soothing way… She also acknowledged this ‘opportunity for letting things come up and go’ when closing the session. It’s ‘nice’ to feel acknowledged, for it’s tough to live with the presence of pain for 40 years, I can assure you.

But when I saw Kate again yesterday, she suggested to call it ‘sensation’ – i.e. take the ‘sting’ out of ‘pain’. She has acquired this experience through Yoga and the birth of her own two babies. Hence she is now passing her knowledge on by teaching classes for Yoga Babies.

I just wish that not only women learned about giving birth with more awareness but also men and women when they make love. Conscious conception is an art never taught in the West. In the East, however, we know of not only the Art of Tantra but also the Tao of Sex!

What is it with this Western male analytical mind that domineered for two millennia? Well, it’s just called evolution of humanity and planet in one universe. Remember: Yoga means unity, unison, oneness…

And in the Western mindset of mathematics I discovered this in terms of time, space and measuring. But that’s going to be another blog post.

STARTING a new 7-year-Cycle of re-locating a dis-located hip

Schematic Examples of CNS Structural Changes i...

Schematic Examples of CNS Structural Changes in chronic pain (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Emma is one of the senior teachers who has accompanied my odyssey since I started Bikram Yoga in 2005. Yesterday I asked her to watch my ‘general mess’, as I’m soo emotional about going to Geneva to celebrate 50 years of Computing @ CERN – where the web was born – my then employer who sent me to Lawrence Radiation Lab. But on the way, the driver, a physicist friend of mine, fell asleep and we fell 24 feet down the motorway…

Taking stock must take place on a number of levels:

The dislocated hip:

  • it feels as if the fine re-location keeps going on, and I only noticed that since about a year;
  • it was only through Bikram Yoga that I became aware of how my body had accommodated for the dislocation;
  • only through Bikram have I experienced the re-alignment that had become necessary and that includes both knees badly!

Pain: 

  • a LOT better, but still often enough bad enough, when every step and both hips hurt in bed;
  • who would have thought that my right arm and shoulder need to hurt these days – to realign everything else,  while relocating my left hip?

Physical well-being:

  • TERRIFIC: instead of ageing, I at least stopped the process, if I haven’t reversed it, counting the number of grey hair.

Mental well-being:

  • those 90 minutes of moving meditation are priceless, in terms of allowing ‘stuff’ to come up and let go.

All in all, I can only count my blessings. But: do I kid myself, maybe? Is there more emotional pain that is waiting to be released? After all, my life has been far from easy with 40 years of chronic pain. But who said it would be a rose garden?

Still. There are soo many people whose lives are soo much harder… I shall keep enjoying mine as much as I possibly can!

Towards ending 39 years of chronic pain while continuing the “good fight”

Dear Emma

Since you are a very senior teacher, I KNOW that you knew what you were doing when you stopped the draft under the  door that gave me some cooling in the heat… You had corrected my posture before, you had opened the door for me, so I knew you cared and observed. You obviously noticed that I cried, for you wouldn’t have talked about people crying during class.

The only trouble is: I keep crying now when I remember the session… When I started Bikram in 2005, I used to cry for months, mainly at the end, and considered it ‘progress’ when it stopped. I even did the 30-day challenge, i.e. every day in a row and you gave me an orange mat as acknowledgement.

In Berlin, where I’ve been practising since 2009, the studio is cooler, so I can always do all exercises, whereas in London I need to rest depending on the heat and on the day. You can tell from the redness of my face.

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The Difference between Who You Are and Who You’d Like to Be is What You Do!

Trainer Elizabeth dropped these words of wisdom at the end of yesterday’s class:

The Difference between Who You Are and Who You’d Like to Be is What You Do!

Yes, being is doing. Love is Action. Sitting around doing nothing doesn’t change us and certainly doesn’t turn us into ‘nice’ people.

Sibel on the day before said

“We’re better people for it: we have more to give. We have more patience.”

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Major ‘software changes’ after 7 years of ‘hardware’ re-alignment

In body terms, hardware means: spine, skeleton and bones. Software means: muscles, tendons and ligaments.

My first seven years of Bikram Yoga resulted in

  • generally feeling ‘loose’ around the joints, especially the shoulders
  • strengthening the muscles around the back, so that its painful feelings of brittleness turned into some flexibility and certainly strength
  • noticing serious improvements regarding what I could do with my left leg: whether it’s getting dressed or in Yoga positions
  • observing how my left hip gradually seemed to get ‘set’ in new micro-ways, as if before it wasn’t quite in the right place.

But now I spent five weeks clearing out my mum’s household which obviously was more than just 26 postures in a hot room… Once I was so exhausted that I went to bed before 8pm and slept for 8 hours…

Now I’m back in London and noticed during my first Yoga session

  • how exhausted I am for I felt like fainting
  • how painful my left leg is so that I actually limp most of the time
  • how I can hardly make certain movements that used not to be a problem.

Hence I have decided to commit myself to coming twice a week, until I am ‘back to normal’ again. In Berlin I always could do more, for the studio is never as hot. But in London I certainly should be able to do a lot more than I did today.

Above all else I KNOW that, one fine day, the left side will be like the right side. I just hope it’ll be before I leave my body altogether! But if not, at least I’ve tried – with the ONLY method that offers me that promise!

Nobody knows the troubles I’ve felt…

Every Wednesday is my Yoga day in Berlin, but when I’m in London I try to go more frequently, as travel time is so much less.

Today I came out with my hip aching as if the accident was a few months ago. The miracles of re-aligning and “re-twisting” that joint into place, tendons, ligaments, muscles and all, will not cease to amaze me. It may not happen 100% by the time I die, but I sure will keep trying!!!

For neither doctors nor lawyers will EVER know how I feel and have been feeling. Nor will they “volunteer” to pay for damages or compensation. Their mindsets won’t allow it: male, mean, non-caring, non-healing, analytical rather than conceptual, restrictive rather than constructive, competitive rather than cooperative, and so it goes along the male / female divide.

Men need to connect their heads with their hearts, as they grow older, but who succeeds?

Women need to connect their hearts with their head, but how many men can stand smart women??? Either intelligent or pretty, but not both. That’s what I discovered at the time of advising physicists who became nobel prize winners later.

But I know what I know, and I trust that the Universe knows, too. Everything will come right, in its time and its logic:

  • the Universe did NOT let me find CERN as an employer, only to forget about it, once I had made my fundamental discoveries and deep insights
  • it does NOT want me to suffer for the sake of suffering; I am gaining insights and my self-knowledge is growing
  • and I am gaining strength and flexibility, as well as purposefulness and pointedness as I practise the Standing Bow…

Watch this space… i.e. where I share my passion for Bikram Yoga as the best physiotherapy there is. I wish all orthopaedic doctors did it once a week!

Published in: on February 9, 2011 at 4:33 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Learning from Defending Victims: Email to CERN’s Legal Service with a view to Compensation

To get compensation for emotional, physical or mental harm done, doesn’t seem to fit into our capitalist culture. Backed by lawyers, ask for the maximum and pay out a minimum. That’s the game of institutions, whether employers or their health insurance companies.

I have two grievances and have sent them to the European Committee for Petitions:

  1. doctors claimed to know that I would NOT suffer from my injuries in ‘old age’
  2. lawyers claimed I should have complained within 10 years of leaving CERN, my then employer who had sent me to Lawrence Radiation Lab in Berkeley on an exchange visit of two months.

(more…)

Published in: on November 18, 2010 at 11:52 am  Leave a Comment  
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