There I was, running into Lauren's Power Vinyasa class late, tip toeing and peeking around for a space to lay down my mat. I was the disoriented, un-zen yogi of the evening...the heavy breather, in the not so Ujjayi kind of way. In the midst of my minds' chatter I zeroed in on Lauren asking the class to straighten out their mats.
"Straight lines are calming to the nervous system," she said.
My mind wandered off to the eyeliner job I witnessed earlier in the day . A little bit panicked and crooked, a valiant but suffering attempt of the "cat eye". A slippery asphalt black, gone fully feline wacky. The horror of it all, it was on my own damn eyelid!
See, I had gone out on a limb and purchased an unusual cream eyeliner. Curious of its' performance and on a newlywed budget, the $3 e.l.f. 'Cream Eyeliner'. So I dipped my M.A.C. #263 Small Angle brush into the plastic pot, and transfered the cream to the pad of my ring finger. (This is a useful technique to make cream eyeliner more malleable, using the warmth from your hand.) As I loaded my brush, I soon realized that the e.l.f liner didn't need any warming. The application was like walking a tight line, there was no forgiveness with this slick little sucker.
After a heavy helping of makeup remover and q-tips, I had smoothed out the swerving line, and conquered the beast! Oh, but later on in the day...the tables had turned. There was that little e.l.f. man getting his party on, smearing around on my eyelid crease like no body's business. The upside was that I was running into yoga anyways...
So, this brings me back. "Straight lines are calming to our nerves." While the e.l.f. Cream Eyeliner is a good backup for a quick drug store grab, it doesn't replace the effortless application and wear that you receive from M.A.C. 'Fluidline', Laura Mercier 'Tightline' or Bobbi Brown 'Long Wear Gel Eyeliner'. The ease in your morning routine and the peace of mind throughout your day is worth the splurge!
Back in yoga class, I'm sitting on my toes. "Hot Toes Pose" Lauren called it. It doesn't sound like much, or really look like much, but it sure feels like something! You squat down, your bum is on your heels, you untuck all your toes (especially that little pinky) and you wait. As I waited, as the pain and discomfort set in, Lauren explained that during the winter we don't use all the muscles in our feet because they are bound and wrapped in socks and boots. She also mentioned that in Chinese Medicine major energy lines are located in our feet and can become blocked when we don't utilize all the muscles. Hot Toes for cold feet.
It got me thinking about the term "cold-feet". Brides are known to experience "cold feet" before their wedding day. The phrase is thought to have originated when soldiers with frost bitten toes were hesitant to enter battle. Really though, it makes sense, if all the energy lines in our bodies connect in our feet.
These major energy lines are called meridians in Chinese medicine. Meridian therapies suggest that limiting thoughts, upsetting feelings and memories are all associated with disturbances or blockage of our body/mind energy system. Releasing these blocks restores a free flow of energy. Because our bodies hold negative feelings, often we experience physical symptoms (pain) in relation to our feelings, until we process them. Reflexology is a common therapy designed to target the physical symptoms of dis-ease.
Recognizing that we are complex mind/body beings, our physical health is often a map to our emotional well being. So sitting in a pose like Hot Toes pose may be painful initially, as it breaks down energy blocks in our bodies. But the emotional benefits are well worth the discomfort.
Spring is right around the corner: Flip-flops, fresh cut grass, and sandy beaches! But until then, if you ever get "cold feet", try some Hot Toes!