Posts Tagged ‘tea’

If I’m not careful, you guys will start to think all I do these days is go out and enjoy myself. OK, it’s true for most of this past week. I’ve had four very fun things take place:

1. I attended a yoga workshop! My teacher, Linda Spackman, called to invite me to a two-hour workshop she was giving on the Yoga Sutras. She felt it was tailor made for me to ease back into practicing. She was so right! We spent most of the class discussing ten of the sutras about cultivating clarity in the mind, then doing some breath work, some meditation, and about 15 minutes of gentle yoga postures.  Oh, they felt so good! (I was humbled to discover I couldn’t touch my toes or get my heels to the floor in downward-facing dog…but it’ll all come back in time.) Yoga! Such good stuff!

Frank Murphy's lovely book "The Spirit of Tea"

2. I was invited to afternoon tea with Frank Murphy, author of The Spirit of Tea, and photographer Kitty Leaken, who is now working on a book on tea rooms. We met at Reposo at the St. Francis Hotel where we enjoyed beautifully prepared Chinese teas (Kitty and I each had Oolong while Frank chose White tea). As luck would have it, I recently finished reading Frank’s book, so I could at least speak intelligently with him about it! But I was surprised to find him picking my brain about the tea business when he is one of the few folks who have actually completed the training of the American Tea Masters Association. It was quite an honor to meet him. I have Kitty to thank for the introduction to Frank and for including me in such a pleasant afternoon with two generous and artistic souls.

3. I splurged on a handmade reconstructed sweater from Etsy artist Jill2day. I’ve been slowly transitioning my wardrobe away from the fitted tops I’ve usually worn (they make me uncomfortably aware of my colostomy now) to more loose, flowing tops. I saw this gorgeous garment on Jill’s Etsy site and immediately placed it on my “favorites” list. For over a month I kept going back and ogling it. Then I read more about Jill and her work in an article on Etsy’s blog, which enticed me further. And, one day recently, I found there was enough money in my PayPal account – so I bought it!! I must say, it’s much more beautiful in person (and exceptionally well constructed) than the photo shows. Sooo, what do you think of my new look?

My "new" reconstructed artsy sweater

4. I went to a Women’s Workshop with my mom that was held this morning at her church. The topics presented were: self care, balance, and boundaries. All stuff I’ve had no choice but to work on over the past six months! Much of the workshop was a good reminder that when we’re not taking care of ourselves first, we’re not likely to be much good for others. I was glad to be there with my mother (who, in this daughter’s opinion, could stand a little more practice in the way of self care, balance and boundaries…I’m just sayin’…).

So, it’s been a heady week full of several themes I’m pretty passionate about: yoga, tea, creative expression and taking good care of oneself. That leads me to encourage you all to take time to find joy in something you’re passionate about, too. I know this much: it’s good for your well being.

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It seems a bit like trying to turn the QE2 around: once you initiate the turn, it still takes FOREVER to get the ship going in a different direction.

Patience required while waiting for the QE2 to make a turn...

Patience required while waiting for the QE2 (or anything this huge) to make a turn...

Finally, nearly two weeks after my last treatment, I’m beginning to feel this ship starting to move in a more positive direction. I’m happy to report I actually feel a little better, I’m getting stronger daily, and, thankfully, I’m spending more time out of bed than in it now. I’ve even gained a couple of pounds back, probably due largely to Linda Wheeler’s homemade Apple Cake – made with 4 lbs. of apples (from her orchard), plus walnuts, raisins, and just enough other stuff to hold it all together. I’ve been eating it warm, with half-n-half, for breakfast every morning, and often having another piece as a snack later.

Finally feeling a bit better has also gone a long way toward lessening my resistance to some things: I’m taking the Xeloda with something akin to acceptance now, and I’ve pretty much completely surrendered to the need to give myself a daily shot of blood thinner (not that it’s become any easier to do – it’s just become part of the daily regimen of things I do whether I like it or not). But the thing I’m most grateful for as I continue to improve is that I am no longer such an invalid and can once again do a few things for myself!

For the past couple of days, I’ve been able to get up in the morning and fix a pot of tea for myself again! I’ve been able to shuffle out to the birdfeeder to fill it with birdseed (my poor birds, who were so used to a regular source of seed, have for weeks now had to wonder where their next meal was coming from). And I’ve even been able to sit at my desk and work for short stretches of time! I’m certain the emotional lift of finally being able to do some things for myself again has helped me just as much as physically feeling a little better.

So, for the present, we’ve finally got this ship heading in the direction of complete health. The focus will soon turn to surgery, but in this moment I am happy to be feeling almost whole again – a different wholeness, to be sure – but whole nonetheless.

(Huge Thank You’s go out to those folks who have continued to support me by ordering tea! I’m deeply grateful. As you can imagine, the momentum for the business waned a bit once I began my treatments. So your show of faith in me has meant a great deal, not to mention some much appreciated income!).

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