As I get packed for my 8th yoga retreat (4 in Kauai, 4 in Manzanita,OR), I realized something. After 30 years of living with HIV, I actually feel the best and healthiest since I started this journey! I credit many things , amazing Doctors and treatments, including alternative ones (why Acupuncture, massage and chiropractic are still considered alternative, just baffles me! Thousands of years of practice can’t be wrong!). But mostly, I credit MYSELF for seeking out these treatments, and moving my body ,when I just felt like curling up in a fetal position with covers over my head.
I happened upon a PBS special the other night, which inspired the title of this post. The yoga teacher was talking about creating movement to get out of the pain. What a concept! Not an opioid in sight! She said when the pain becomes chronic rather than acute, you must start moving in order to strengthen those muscles and ligaments. We talk alot about synovial fluid in my yoga class. This is the goop in your joints that lubricates and keeps the sockets and joints healthy. You can’t get that lubrication by sitting on your duff!
My Grandmother was hilarious. One of her secrets to living with chronic arthritis was “9 T’s of ET” (9 tablespoons of Early Times bourbon). I wish we had known all we do now about the effects of exercise and movement when she was in pain! I keep thinking she would have been a natural yogi! Her other secret was “The more fun you have, the better you feel”. Now, those are words to live by!
So get out there and play! Dance, swim, ride a bike! And don’t forget to dress like a teenager.