Call me mad if you like, but I'm sitting here at work and I've been here all afternoon and it's a public holiday! A little crazy in some ways I suppose, but I've had a lovely afternoon. There is something rather satisfying about being in the Kinder room all alone and quietly sorting, preparing and planning for the weeks ahead. Perhaps it should have all been done over the Christmas break, but the room was a bit of a building site for the latter half of January so I really haven't had a lot of time to settle in and make things 'right'.
The building project was a kind of mezzanine floor with a safety fence around it to make a cosy and inviting reading place. The kids love it so much that one of my colleagues' children head in here after school and sit up there reading while they wait for their mum to finish off and be ready to head home. There is something kind of irresistible about going up! Remember the arguments over the top bunk whenever there was one available! Everyone wants to be on the top one. Not me so much; I've never been terribly fond of heights I have to admit. Or going downhill on a pushbike which is, I think, possibly the scariest thing a person could ever do aside from bungee jumping, parachuting and eating puffer fish (none of which I have ever done or would recommend to any but the most stout-hearted). Oh and snarling dogs - terrifying. I do enjoy a rollicking good sail though, so I guess I am just selective about my thrills in life...as one probably should be!
Anyway, sorting shelves and installing a printer and preparing fun and interesting challenges for little people has been my activity of choice this afternoon and with the quiet bubbling of the filter on the fish tank for company, it has been restful and enjoyable. I've managed to shorten my to-do list and that will make my week just a bit less stressful. Stressful. Yes, even though life as a Kinder teacher is loads of fun, it can also be a bit stressful at times. I went to see a naturopath a week or so ago...I think I may have mentioned that in my last post. She gave me a few dietary guidelines and sold me an herbal mixture and suggested that managing stress in my life would be an important part of getting my health back where I'd like it to be. She recommended yoga. I like yoga...or at least I have done in the past and have been pretty pleased with my level of bendiness and willingness to hold interesting poses whilst waiting for the calm to descend. But right now I don't feel very fit at all. Rather more fat than fit. So I'm not sure I'll be very bendy at all. Nonetheless I have purchased, just yesterday, a dvd with a yoga workout for either stress or flexibility or both stress and flexibility if you have enough time. So anytime soon - perhaps this evening - I'll add that workout to my stress management routine.
This morning I watched the stress workout. In my chair. I did the throat breathing. That was new...or at least I'd forgotten about it. My son chuckled quietly as I sat there breathing loudly in and out, sounding like the ocean waves washing in and out, just like the lady said. I wonder if I sounded a bit like I was getting ready to make some rather unusual and unwanted phone calls. No. Just breathing. In and out. Loudly. Over my vocal cords. In a slightly tightened throat. Sounds impossible but you can do it. I did. Anyway, I watched the stress workout, telling myself that it would all work better if I just watched it through before trying to follow it or keep up. That went well. So I made a mug of tea and watched the flexibility workout. I'm pretty cool with all of it except the swan dive that finished off with one leg straight up in the air behind and the head resting neatly between the ankles. Hmmm. Probably not going to nail that one the first time around. The tea was great. Just what I needed after some heavy breathing. I survived watching the flexy workout then wondered about the third option on the menu...the full workout.
It would have been an injustice to watch the two separate routines and not the combined version, so I watched that too. Now we all know that I could have bitten the bullet and had a go straight off, but these things are better warmed up to, don't you think? I mean now I know how the two routines go together so when I have the time there will be no surprises. On the menu the stress workout is first then the flexy workout. But in the whole program, you do the flexy bit first then the stress bit. Who'd 've thought? So now I know. Have you ever noticed that when you've watched an exercise dvd you kind of feel a teensy weensy bit like you've actually done it. You feel kind of good about it.
That's not going to cut it for stress relief though, which is what it's all about. Flexibility back - that will be a bonus if it happens. It would be a huge benefit at work where one of the hazards of the job is perching on chairs designed to support garden gnomes (or beings of similar proportion, which I most certainly am not!). A bit of flexibility would enable me to arise with more grace in the midst of a game of Duck, Duck, Goose. The kids laugh a lot when one of them has been game enough to 'Goose' me! They've about run around the circle by the time I've got myself up. But if I start to do my yoga dvd routines...not just watch them but DO them, I'll be able to surprise the kids one day by leaping to my feet with the agility and grace of a springbok. The looks of surprise on their faces will be enough. Well, really, honestly, just doing it will be enough; just being able to move about a bit more easily.
So here I am at work, fairly well prepared for the weeks ahead, noticing that the sun has gotten low and thinking it's about time to head home for some dinner and perhaps a wee bit of yoga. Long weekends are absolutely the best and what a dreadful shame that they are not the norm. I reckon the world would be a better place if they were. We'd all be a bit less stressed and surely that would be a good thing indeed. Wherever you are, whatever you're doing, make the best of it and try not to stress too much. See you next time.