Saturday, April 3, 2010

Yoga for the Disabled

I went to a yoga class yesterday. I spoke to the instructor beforehand and told her about my right shoulder being weak. On the registration form I filled out prior to taking the class, I mentioned that I had leukemia (in remission). In the space where they ask for what meds you are taking I wrote: too many to mention. Maybe I should just pretend I'm normal. Only I'm not.

There were seven people in the class, all middle aged. I may not have been the oldest, but I was the newest and the worst. Yoga's not about competition but I have a long way to go before I can do downward dog. The weakness is in my right shoulder allows me to do the child pose. Maybe someday my shoulder will get stronger and I'll be able to do a push-up again.

The class seemed to go on forever. I was looking forward to the fifteen minutes of relaxation at the end, but it was only five. In college I took a Kundalini yoga class (for credit!) and we always had a prolonged relaxation period during which people fell asleep and even snored. Maybe Hatha yoga is different. I could have used a nap.

I did feel at once relaxed and energized at the end though. It was hard work but worth it. I'm going to try to do two classes a week and also get some massage therapy. They do have more beginner classes, and one for people over 50 which is probably where I should be.

I only feel a little sore this morning, probably because I've been jogging and exercising regularly. I've been up for over an hour thanks to prednisone and am trying to pass the time until Harry and Marty wake up. Harry has a race today, which we're going to see. It's suppose to be high in the sixties. Marty and I will do errands (library, grocery shopping, bank) and then take Turbo in for a heart worm blood test and urine check. The vet is next door to the ice cream stand, so you know what that means.

I'm thinking grilled lamb chops medium rare washed down with some red wine for dinner. Both would make my doctor shake his head sadly but you only live once and I'm tired of being in a holding pattern. I see him on Tuesday. I want to eliminate or reduce some meds, and I'm sure he'll agree. He's also testing my blood for cd4 and igG levels to check out the strength of my immune system. I could be wrong but my immune system seems fine. I've only had one cold all winter. My doctor will say it's because I'm careful but this isn't altogether true. I've given up mask and gloves, eat whatever I want and have dramatically reduced hand sanitizer usage. I'm eight months out of transplant and feeling fine.

Maybe I should bring my own exercise mat to yoga in the future. Who knows what kind of germs might be on the surface of the community ones, posed to get under my skin and in my lungs while I'm in the child position.


Ann said...

This whole experience has turned me into a germ freak, so, yes please to bringing your own yoga mat to class. It looks like I'm going to have to step up my exercise game to keep up with you. :)

Ronni Gordon said...

You sound great. I've been struggling through yoga too, searching for my balance. Sometimes the instructor brings me a chair for standing poses where I'm wobbling. Also the wall is my friend. It's good but sometimes I look at the clock and count the minutes before I get out of there. It ends soon enough and then I'm glad I went.