Monday, May 7, 2012

No Bending for 14 Days - 11 if I'm "Good"

There is a sad Buddhist story about a father who believes his son to be dead. The son comes to the house and knocks on the door.  He says "It's me father."  The father doesn't believe him and sends him away.  He never sees his son again.  The moral of the story is that we should not be so stuck in our own beliefs as to refuse the truth when it is in our face.

I had such a moment several weeks ago.  A woman came to my class that I had never met before.  After class, she asked to look at the bottom of my foot.  I thought this was strange but obliged.  She noticed an unusual mole when I was demonstrating a posture.  She had some medical (and maybe personal) connection with melanoma.  She said that I needed to have this mole looked at.

I had never previously seen a dermatologist for my moles.  Maybe I should have.  I am fair skinned and have had a few serious sunburns (not because I love tanning so much, but because I love the sun).  I made an appointment with Center City Dermatology.

The doctor was extremely nice.  She saw nothing wrong with the mole on my foot but did a full body scan and discovered an abnormal mole on my low back.  She had it biopsied.  It was in the mid-range of abnormal moles and she wanted to remove it before it moved into the serious/melanoma range.

That's where I was this morning.  The excision itself was very easy and painless.  The painful part were the instructions for recovery:  No bending for 14 days.  But my yoga!!  Ok, 11 days if you're good.  But if you're not, it could take longer. 

It looks like I have an "opportunity" to work on my seated practice for the next few days.  I'm very attached to my practice and have a deep fear of losing ground - whatever that means- especially after my health set backs from last year.

Have you ever had to take a break from your asana practice?  How did you deal with it? 


  1. Hi there!
    I broke my arm two summers ago. I didn't have a cast and I ended up being able to do a modified practice, but I couldn't weight bear for two months, and much of second series and none of the third series arm balances I was doing were possible. Although my cheerfulness during the experience certainly wasn't heroic, overall I found it valuable. I learned to better connect to my lower body and my legs. Most of all, it was good to get perspective and realize that nobody dies when you don't do pull off a full-throttle practice every morning. I also did a lot of walking and meditation during that time. It was frustrating, but I got through it and now when I am excessively attached to the physical aspect of the practice, I look back at that time and remember when I was able (albeit forced) to let go a bit.

  2. I had to take a few months off my practice, just as it was starting to get interesting, due to a double knee injury I sustained during a yoga retreat! It was horrible....but it made me more thankful for my practice and taught me a lot about awareness. I hope all goes well for you :)

  3. Thanks for your comments, Micqui and AYEA! I appreciate your stories and encouragement and am happy to hear that you worked through your injuries, too.


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