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Jigme

Jigme frets not about things

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6.16

Heat and cold, the wind and rain,

Sickness, prison, beatings—

I’ll not fret about such things.

To do so only aggravates my trouble.

 

--Śantideva, The Way of the Bodhisattva

 

Hi!

 

During the last challenge, having come back to aikido, I ran into some issues with my joints. I'm looking into it, but meanwhile, I'm going to follow the sage's advice, keep calm, and do physical therapy exercises every work day at 3 pm. We have a group that meets and does bodyweight circuits at the office, so it'll be nice to have consistency and company.

 

Other stuff I'm doing:

 

STR - focusing on this stat!  I'm using resistance bands to stabilize my hyperflexible shoulders.

CON - I've taken a hit to CON, thanks to a nasty cold I brought back from my trip to Sweden earlier this month. I'm not running right now, but I'm walking dogs for 30 mins/day most days as a side gig.

DEX - my usual go-to, yoga, is out for now. Tai chi is dex-based, right?

WIS - still meditating 10-30 mins/day.

INT - daily French. Not sure if I'm going to continue learning Swedish. There is no one to practice with and all the Swedes speak English.

CHA - downloaded an app called 3 Good Things that reminds me to fill out three good things about my day.

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Welcome back! I like the look of this challenge, and yes, Taiji is totally dex-based.

 

How's the PT coming along?

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I have been thinking about Treva’s realization of finding oneself in hell. It reminds me of where I was three years ago - also looking at parts of people that shouldn’t be on the outside, working 14-hour days, getting yelled at, losing loved ones and grip on reality. I walked away. It’s not for everyone, and it’s certainly been thrown in my face that not everyone has the privilege to walk away - you know, the privilege of setting one’s life on fire. But I’m far happier now as a failure in my former profession than I was as a success in hell.

 

It’s not for everyone.

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I know the feeling. I've tried my hand at a lot of different things which didn't work out. While I didn't wind up doing something so dramatic as lighting it all on fire just to watch it burn, living as a Failed Bunch Of Things hasn't been the worst thing that ever happened to me. :)

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Speaking of failing at stuff! I tried this Darebee dumbbell program in addition to my PT, and turns out my 10 lb weights are too heavy for some of the exercises.  I'll come back to it after this PT challenge, then.

 

I also started wearing a shoulder brace to aikido. Not sure if it actually stabilizes anything, but it's been working as a visual cue for people not to do weird shit!  I'm waiting on a referral to a rheumatologist and a geneticist (fancy!) from my GP to investigate what is actually causing the joint problems.

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Today was a perfect spring day for shooting. I am a bit ashamed to celebrate, because it’s not about hitting the target, but I hit the target. Smack dab in the middle.  That’s the third time in three years that I’ve actually hit anything, and possibly the first time I got bullseye. Pretty sure there’s no way for me to replicate this, so I’m not in any danger in having my practice devolve into target shooting, but gosh, the arrow actually hitting makes such a nice sound!

 

Once a year, for First Shot of the year, we are, in fact, supposed to aim — at increasingly smaller targets. People come to watch and everything. We’re...not great at that. This year, we hit three out of five, after many attempts. No, not each, the entire class shoots at one target, then after someone hits, the targets are switched out and we move on to the next one. It takes about an hour and a half to go through all five. Then, we go to drink sake, eat noodles, and think about our lives.

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I've done something like what you describe, only it was with rifles and other firearms. It's... tough. And I could see how it would take a while if you were doing it with a bow and arrow.

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Falling into a rhythm with PT, even though I’m not yet able to do it every day, as planned. The Swedish Cold from Hell rages on, going on solid two weeks now, which is pretty unusual for me. My energy levels are a little better, but congestion and cough will not let up.

 

I miss activity that is more strenuous than walking a dog. I’m going to try my indoor bike tomorrow. Usually, outdoor exercise is what I love best, but I can’t fricken breathe out there right now. At least I got my trusty box of Kleenex in the ol’ basement.

 

Also, I started learning Spanish, because why not.

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Neat! Figured out a super-important part of the form: getting the bow to rotate after releasing the arrow. Now, normally I death grip anything one puts into my hand: swords, bows, small woodland creatures (pls don’t give me any small woodland creatures). That is not good for the bow and will eventually warp it if you keep doing it. After five years of practice, I’m finally starting to be able to relax my stupid hand. Yay!

 

I also started wearing my shoulder brace to the kyudo class, but not seeing a significant difference yet.

 

Next project: figure out why my glove hand ‘collapses’ on release: according to the instructor, I move my hand toward the target, then back right before releasing the arrow. I have no idea when, why, or how I’m doing it — I certainly don’t feel it happening and I can’t see my hand, because it is well behind my ear at that point. Hey, there’s always something to work on.

 

I would like to start saving for my own arrows. A set of four mid-range ones costs around $400, which is a bit high for me right now, but...a dollar a day will get me close for next year.

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It's strange, how the weapon arts require so many little things to get right. I bet that's why there's so much drilling - over and over and over, to get the thing right until you can't get it wrong.

 

Glad to hear that you're figuring things out. Hope the shoulder does okay with all this!

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The Swedish Cold has finally gone away! I was able to ride the bike to work twice last week and go to both aikido classes.  Followed through with the PT every day, too - I'm pretty proud of last week, in general.

 

Got some bike-related soreness, though.  I mean, I really do prefer running to trying to conquer a 4.5-mile-long hill on the way to work, but living in this area, I feel like I am personally murdering the environment if I drive my car to work.  Between the hippies and the prairie dogs, I feel like they are judging me and my methods of transportation.

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On ‎4‎/‎7‎/‎2018 at 12:42 AM, Jigme said:

Got some bike-related soreness, though.  I mean, I really do prefer running to trying to conquer a 4.5-mile-long hill on the way to work, but living in this area, I feel like I am personally murdering the environment if I drive my car to work.  Between the hippies and the prairie dogs, I feel like they are judging me and my methods of transportation.

 

I mean, if you run over some hippies, maybe it's a net loss on total carbon emissions? On account of you ending their carbon emissions?

 

But yeah, no, bike is probably the way to go. I think if I could walk to work or realistically bike there that I would.

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