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THANKFUL FRIDAY

Cindy Maddera

Now is your opportunity to be thankful for this day. - Kelly Cirone, yoga teacher and plant queen

This is what Kelly told a group of us on Wednesday as we finished up our yoga class together. I get on my yoga mat every day, but only go to one class a week. Though I did sign up for a special Yoga Mala class next Thursday. Kelly is going to lead us through 108 sun salutations to bring in the Summer Solstice. I’m already doubting my ability to do 108 chatturangas. The number 108 is a sacred number. It is also the same number of beads in a prayer bracelet. It sounds like a a really big number. This is why I go to yoga classes every now and again: to have someone guide and push me to do poses and vinyasas that I wouldn’t necessarily do on my own, even if that means doing 108 rounds of sun salutations.

That very same day, a storm moved in to our area. It turned the sky into that shade of dark blue that is almost purple. Gusts of wind blew leaves and limbs and trash all over. I left work on my scooter, just barely ahead of it all. It was like being chased by the weather as I zipped home, swerving to avoid the debris already flying around on the streets. I parked the scooter in the garage just as the first loud crash of thunder sounded. Then I raced out to feed the chickens before the rain started. Michael collected the eggs while I swapped out their food bin. I took four steps away from the coop. On the fifth step, my left foot went into a small hole in the yard and my ankle rolled. I heard a sickening crunch sound as it happened and (still) really believe that was the sound of the grass ripping under my sliding foot. My body fell down to the ground and I got that nauseous feeling you sometimes get when you’ve struck something really hard. I sat there for a minute shaking the stars from my vision and then hobbled my way into the house. Then I just proceeded with my usual Wednesday habits. That included teaching a yoga class. By the time I finished teaching, my left ankle was about twice the size of the right one. I went home and elevated my ankle and covered it with an ice pack.

The next day, I got out of bed very carefully and took a step. It wasn’t so bad. I thought “I can do this!” So… I did it. I stood at my desk for the first two hours of work. I walked my loop to get coffee. I rode the stationary bike and got on my yoga mat. My ankle hurt the whole time, but I just kept on going. I propped my foot up on my desk while I ate lunch and scrounged an ice pack out of the freezer to prop against it. If I have to be completely and totally honest with you, I will say that just touching the outside part of my ankle will make me punch you in the face. Walking doesn’t hurt too badly if I move slow. Except I’m not a slow walker and this forced slow down also makes me want to punch someone in the face. I’ve got things to do. We’re packing the camper up for Branson. I’ve got places to go. We’re going to Silver Dollar City tomorrow! I do not have time to limp my way from task to place to task to place.

I have a hard time practicing the slow down that I preach.

Now is your opportunity to be thankful for this day.

With each passing day, this ankle is going to get better and better. But only if I give it the rest it needs to do so. Now is my opportunity to be thankful for how much better my ankle feels today as compared to yesterday. Now is my opportunity to be thankful for this reminder to slow down. Now is my opportunity to be thankful for the reminder to have patience with myself.