I hope my American bloggers enjoyed a Happy Thanksgiving Celebration yesterday with family and friends. Thanks to everyone for your supportive messages last month. Peter is visiting the hospital for various tests and this week we are meeting with the Consultant to discuss results. We hope for a diagnosis, treatment plan and information as although Peter is brave and stoic it will help to know what we are dealing with – fingers crossed.
This month has been reflective in many ways but I have had some old experiences which are helping me deal with my stress levels and new experiences which have been very thought provoking, I will tell you one old experience which we have repeated over many years. A regular walk of ours is along part of a canal near to our house, we have various routes to and from it but the canal part of the walk remains consistent. Different seasons add to the experience but this time of year is our favourite as less people are using the canal and fewer cyclists. The light is different therefore the views of surrounding countryside seem enhanced. Lots of wildlife thrives alongside the canal and various ducks, moorhens and occasional fish inhabit the area so it is interesting. Occasional hazards occur when a local fishing club hold competitions and block the path but on the whole each group of people (and animals) co-exist. Strange specimen featured!
The highlight this weekend was a heron. I wonder if it is the same one that we have seen over the years but is probably an offspring. I keep meaning to find out more about herons as I am fascinated by their inscrutability and patience. This one waited for Peter to approach him, seemed to pose for the photo, glanced around then took flight looking majestic. These birds look so elegant even when flying despite their long legs. Our next encounter was with a pair of swans who swam right up to the bank, pecked at some reeds, then seemed to pose for the camera before gliding gracefully off. I wondered at first if they thought we had some titbits but they didn’t seem bothered. The two incidents enhanced our walk. I reflect on magical moments like these during the dark grey days.
My new experience is Gong Bath or Sound Yoga (Suntatya Yoga). Whilst yoga is one of my main exercise routines of the week this is totally different. Several of my friends have followed my example despite my not talking about my individual experience (unusual!!) as each person’s reaction is different. We assemble in a local hall, normally 8 or 10 of us, with yoga mats, blankets, cushions, comfortable clothing and lie on the floor for an hour with our eyes closed! BUT during this time Helen, a young qualified yoga teacher friend of mine, plays a variety of sounds using singing bowls, gongs, bells, pebbles, rain maker and other instruments but I am unsure of all the names. Occasionally Helen reads a piece of poetry near the end of the session or plays a piece of music. One week around Harvest she played Eva Cassidy’s Fields of Gold which conjured up various images for me. I have given a brief resumé of the sessions as it is impossible to describe. We are in a totally safe environment, in soft light and the effect for me is total relaxation. Apparently the scientific theory is that toxins are released by the sound waves which help release stress, thus helping the body heal and restore itself. I cannot say anything other than during the past year it has made an unbelievable difference to my stress levels. I sleep well the night of the session and the feeling continues for a several days. It is important to drink lots of water to rehydrate thoroughly as the toxins continue to be released. I am unsure of why this works for me and for other people I know, I am pragmatic yet spiritual too so might be susceptible. Two of my friends are deaf and wear hearing aids which they remove for the sessions but they experience similar feelings.
Old and New Experiences indeed but invaluable at this stage of my life. Relax is my word of the moment. I hope you NaNo Challenge writers are able to do the same! Good luck for the last week amazing people.