April News

My Monthly Newsletter…Enjoy!

SPRING TIME INTENTIONS

Dear Friends,
     Happy Spring! The new season is happening as I see the first signs of green popping up! It is such a great season to notice Life.

I have been teaching yoga for over twelve years in the community, but in 2011, I decided to create the vision that has become known as Embracing Spirit Yoga. I am so blessed to share Yoga with people of ALL abilities in the community and in my home.  I am SO proud of a recent news article that highlighted my work. Check it out: http://www.koaa.com/story/37827965/your-healthy-family-yoga-is-key-element-in-tbi-rehab

I continue to find a new pace of living and a new passion for teaching beyond yoga. I am exploring and sharing a variety of wellness techniques in my personal practice and life.  I am reminded that what I experience and what sometimes life gives us, is exactly what we need in order to fully blossom.

As we enter into April, we are reminded of the cycles of life that exist in all forms. This is a beautiful time to look to at nature for lesson and to welcome your own time of growth.  Spring time is a great time to scatter seeds within yourself to create the beautiful blossoms in your life that you desire. Taking time to notice the changes around you as you see the trees begin to bud, the crocus flowers pop open and the bright yellow daffodils smile at you.  This is a great way to bring awareness of the growth that surrounds you. Simply noticing, and then cultivating growth within yourself will do wonders as you blossom this season.

Some great ideas for personal growth include increasing tolerance, having patience, loving yourself more, laughing daily, or slowing down to enjoy life. Once you set your intention and scatter your seeds, it is time to nurture these powerful thoughts and water them with love and tenderness. Keeping weeds away through positive thoughts and affirmations are a sure way to have a great harvest in the coming months.

What seeds will you scatter this season? I am planning to plant seeds of intention and touching lives through service.

Blessings,
Stacie

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.

 

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Reality

It may be that I am leaning towards the age of 50 and the things that used to matter so much to me now have much less weight in my day-to-day.  For example, I am finding that I am far more confident than I was even just 5 years ago.  One example of this lack of confidence showed up in my insecurities about my ability to effectively share yoga, when in truth I am a fine teacher.  It showed up during the times when I worried way too much about my appearance, or my speed running up a mountain or the amount of work I could pile onto my plate.  This all seems to be fading with every passing year.  I was driving home today thinking that I really don’t feed an internal need to be “liked” anymore, and with that falling away a sense of authenticity has begun to emerge the last few years.  My voice has gotten stronger and my attitude about life has gotten much richer.

And then life showed up in a real big way.

Three years ago this month, I severely tore tissue in my hip called the labrum. It is likely that it was already slightly torn, but during a snow storm while shoveling my driveway, I tore it to then point of needing to go to the emergency room.  I was prescribed pain medications, although since I had just had foot reconstruction a couple prior, I had some leftover and opted to not get the prescription filled. When the surgery to repair my hip came in April, I had been taking pain meds off and on since the January snow storm.  The surgery had a rough 4-6 week recovery time and the pain control was tough.  By the time August came, I knew that my hip was still not quite right despite my greatest efforts to heal.  Another MRI and unfortunately another tear.  A bigger tear.  Another round of pain meds while we waited for surgery.  Surgery was the end of December and that meant another 4-6 weeks on crutches and another round of pain meds.  When March came, I again knew that my hip did not do well with the 2nd surgery. The month of May brought a consult with a specialized surgeon in Denver who does nothing but reconstruction on tissue of the hip.  Surgery was scheduled, but not until the month of September, which meant 4 months of pain meds.  The surgery in September was a HUGE and long surgery that encompassed two very detailed procedures.  I had a couple of nights in the hospital and an even longer recovery than the first two ahead of me.  And more meds. My body had taken a toll.

It has now been 4 months and my hip is finally starting to stop hurting every minute.  Sure, some days are hard and when I do teach a lot, I feel hip pain, but it is tolerable. What is not tolerable is the effects of long term—low dose—narcotics.

When we hear on the evening news the term “opioid crisis” some of us may see in our minds a picture of the strung out druggie doing anything they can to get high.  We might even see someone in chronic pain who has given up and chooses to self medicate with more than the needed amount of pain meds. Who you might think of last, is a person like me.  A healthy, vibrant, positive and upbeat Yoga teacher.  Someone who has been prescribed rounds and rounds of narcotics because life has handed her some hard physical challenges in the last 4 years.  I have never taken more than I was prescribed, in fact I take half of what they tell me to.  Why?  Because I know the power that they have.

So in my authentic truth, I am dependent on opioids and I am fighting with all I have to get off them.  I am working with doctors and I have a strong plan of tapering them out of my system.  Even going slow, and barely taking any, the effects of withdrawal are living HELL—runny nose, shaking, lack of breath, stomach issues, racing thoughts, adrenalin, anxiety and panic, and PAIN.  Pain that makes my hip pain a walk in the park.  You see, our brains have the capacity to change—both positively and negatively—its called neuroplasticity.  My brain and its chemical structure has become dependent on the external chemical and without it, my brain sends different pain signals to other areas of the body, until I take the drug.  Once I take it, my symptoms go away….temporarily until the brain wants it again. And again.

Besides lowering my dose, I have some strategies in the uncomfortable moments of withdrawals.  I take epsom salt baths, I walk, I meditate, I cry and I use essential oils.  I have come up with an amazing blend that helps reduce the symptoms of withdrawals.  I apply the blend to my spine, the base of my skull, my wrists and under my nose.  Within minutes, the symptoms are tolerable. Sometimes I have to apply every twenty minutes, and sometimes the effects last longer.

This is not a post about essential oils.  It is about reality.  It is about authenticity and being real.  It is MY face of the opioid crisis. It is about my truth. It is about being confident enough in myself to be transparent.

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In a 10ml roller combine the picture of oils, 8 drops each (yes it is a TON of EO), top with FCO. It may be trial and error like it was for me.  I researched and looked in my resources to find what is best for me.  I also take zendocrine detox daily and put lemon in my water.  If you want more info, or you are also struggling, I would love to connect—doing this alone should never be an option.

Hello…this is me

Hey Everyone! We have many new members and I thought it would be neat to re-introduce myself and say hello. Since I don’t know all of you personally, I thought I should share a bit about myself to those who don’t know me.
 
1️⃣ I teach adaptive yoga to adults with disabilities, specifically traumatic brain injuries, in my community.
2️⃣I love nature and refuel by walking twice a day! rain, snow or shine I get out there!
3️⃣I am an introvert! I love teaching but also treasure alone time.
4️⃣ I am a mom to 3 adults kids (two guys and a gal, who lives with me and is disabled)
5️⃣I am a native to colorado and recently bought my childhood home! It is amazing!
6️⃣I am passionate about service-I love my Fridays because I volunteer applying essential oils to people in hospice.
7️⃣I have had THREE hip surgeries in the last year and have been humbled.
8️⃣ I have 3 dogs and a cat. They keep me busy and bring me joy!
9️⃣I am a wellness coach and level 1 healing touch practitioner AND I used to weigh 100 pounds more than I do today! I have walked the path to health!
🔟 I believe in the power of gratitude and goodness.
 
Thanks for being in this group and I hope you can be inspired. I would love to know a little about you! Tell me!
Job Title- Giver of Goodness

Mid-Month News

Hey Everyone!
I appreciate you all taking the time to read and follow my blog. Truly, I am grateful. I wanted to pass along my mid-month newsletter….I typically only write one per month, but there is just too many good things to wait.  Enjoy!

I was reading this morning and came across a quote that really describes my state of being these days….and that is gratitude.  “…sometimes we get so focused on the difficulty of the climb, we lose sight of being grateful that we have a mountain to climb…” And that is EXACTLY where I have been the last few weeks. The recovery from this surgery has not been easy, but I am reminded on those really hard days of a sweet lady who I am fortunate to share Yoga with. When I asked her one day how she was doing, her response was, “My body is reminding me that I am alive….and that means I am grateful”. Although I still have quite a mountain ahead of me, I am grateful that I have the ability (with lots of support) to go climb it.  I am thankful I am determined, capable and very focused on staying present with what today offers me, whether it is pain or relief.

With that, I am also so excited to share that this past week I became a Certified Brain Injury Specialist by passing a rigorous exam.  One of the blessings of surgery is that I had time to study as well as my focus being on my body, I was not too overly stressed if I passed or not. Boom!

I wanted to share also for those who aren’t on followers on social media that I just completed a great project with an organization called Unmasking Brain Injury.  Through a month long process of identifying emotions and often trapped feelings, to was an honor to work with 30 individuals living with brain injuries to complete a really intimate and challenging display of the impact of their injury on their life. Check out the pictures below to see just a snippet of their work. I am so proud of who they are.

Finally, I wanted to pass along an amazing special if you have been watching me with essential oils and wonder how they might fit into your own healthy lifestyle.  I use essential oils for everything from pain support, help with sleep, reducing the toxic load in my home by cleaning naturally and many, many emotional benefits.  If you are skeptical, I challenge you to give me 30 minutes of your time, a book to borrow and some samples to try.  If you are inspired and ready, lets get together and get you started. This month there are several starter kits 20% off!  You will get your oils, a year-long wholesale pricing membership (like costco ) and mentoring with me. With this membership there is no requirement to purchase monthly or sell–just the same discount as me!  Plus, when you get these amazing oils in your home, I will arm you a in-depth resource book to empower your knowledge, as well as other goodies to get you on your way.

Also as of this week, I am returning to LifeTime fitness to teach Yoga and Pilates AND I have a few spots open in my home studio for private or small group classes.

Here’s to health and happiness,
Stacie 

20% off select enrollment kits

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To see all the kits go here & and to get started just go here

 

Unmasking Brain Injury

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Happy Monday! It’s Monday Mindfulness—before you get super busy, take a few minutes for yourself. 

I think one of the most important gifts we can give ourselves is to pause, and inquire within. For me, the words I need to hear are: I see you. I believe it is our most human need—to be seen. 

What words do you need to hear? 

Throat Chakra Blend

A beautiful custom blend of essential oils and sodalilte.  This blend works to balance and open the fifth chakra so that truth and communication can be easily achieved.

The Throat chakra is about the expression of yourself: Your truth, purpose in life, creativity. Note that this chakra has a natural connection with the second chakra or sacral chakra, center of emotions and creativity as well. The throat chakra’s emphasis is on expressing and projecting the creativity into the world according to its perfect form or authenticity.

If you are interested in learning more about chakras, essential oils and gemstones, follow this link to a free online course.  If you are ready to start using essential oils for your mind, body and spirit, go here.

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Waking Up

About twelve years ago I woke up and said to myself, “I am done being fat”.  I had lived with extra weight since my first pregnancy when I was eighteen years old.  Within just four years of my first kiddo, I had three little babies and a bunch of added pounds.  I was fully investing in being a momma and unfortunately at that time I had no idea that not investing in myself was actually a disservice to them.

Carrying the extra weight also meant that I was clearly eating foods that were not the healthiest and I was doing no exercise or self-care at all. I had every excuse in the world as to why I was unable to lose weight; healthy food costs so much, I don’t have time, I am too busy, I can’t afford a gym, etc.

Clearly my mind, body and spirit were so disconnected.  I was lost.

The day that I woke up and decided that I was done was in the month of March where spring was just beginning. When I think back of that time, I realize that I too was in a rebirthing or awakening from a dark and long slumber. I was beginning the journey of my own form of blossoming.

My plan consisted of many things but the foundation of it all began not with the outer or my physical body, but instead it started with cleaning up my inner world.  My thoughts.

My first course of action was that I chose to wake up one hour earlier each morning and start my day with quiet, contemplative reading.  I journaled every single morning.  My journal entries at that time were not a recount of my day or diary-like at all, instead I wrote affirmative statements such as “I am worth it”.  I also wrote down all that I was grateful for in the present, and all that I was grateful for that was coming to me.  It was something like this: “I am grateful for the food I have chosen to eat.  I am grateful for my healthy body”. The quiet and contemplative time was like a drink of cold water on a hot day; refreshing, awakening and invigorating.

The time spent still and quiet each morning began to stoke my inner fire of mindfulness.  As I became more aware of my thoughts and was purposeful for those sixty minutes, I began to train my brain to be more aware of my thoughts throughout the day.  I began to notice when my thoughts would shift to lack or negativity and I would immediately pause to reframe them to something that was positive, and true. I found that many times I was attaching myself to a made up story or a future based fear.  For example, when my thoughts were something like, “I am so heavy….I am a pig…..I can’t afford that…..I wouldn’t look good in that…..I am broke…..I am a mess”, I would stop and tell myself that all of that was a story and the truth was/is “I am worth it….I have plenty of money….I am beautiful….I am amazing….”

Once I began to remove the heavy and sludge-filled thoughts that were literally weighing me down, I became more deliberate in my actions.  Through the act of being mindful, I interrupted the patterns that were contributing to my extra weight and replaced those actions with healthier ones:

  • My walking shoes were placed on the steps that went from my garage to my house and every day when I came home from work and before ANYTHING, I slipped on my shoes and walked 40 minutes.
  • The dog’s leash was set out and every morning–rain or shine–I walked my dogs 40 minutes before work.  I slept less but as I moved more, my body was less fatigued and required less sleep that ended up actually being more restorative.
  • The kids snacks were put in the cabinet above the fridge so it literally took a step stool to get to them.  The extra work allowed time for me to really think about how much I wanted/needed cheetos.
  • Instead of going straight to the kitchen when I got done walking, I went straight to the bathtub.  Not only did this give me a self-care ritual, it interrupted a pattern of snacking before dinner.  By the time I got out of my bath, it was time to cook and I eliminated extra calories in mindless snacking.
  • I used small salad plates for every meal which tricked my brain into thinking I was eating more.
  • I taught the kids how to wash and load their own dishes because I was eating thousands of calories in leftover chicken nuggets and fries after I just ate my dinner.
  • I invested in measuring cups and a food scale.  I did this deliberately for a short time so that I would be more intentional with my choices.
  • I logged EVERY single calorie that passed through my lips.  I did this for two and a half years!  Eventually that was an obsession that I had to let go of because it was getting in the way of joy and pleasure with food, but for the time,  I needed to learn just how much food I was over-eating.  Portions and extra wasted calories were out of control.
  • I started to love who I was.  I became passionate about ME.  I was investing in myself and the results were astounding.  I was happier, my relationships improved and my life began to be incredibly vibrant.

When asked how I did it, my answer is this:  I woke up.  I opened my eyes to my life and I said yes to me.  I cleaned up my inner world of thoughts and as a result my actions became more deliberate.  I began to see my self-worth and choose to love myself by honoring my thoughts and actions. You see, it was not a crazy diet that was restrictive or extreme and I wasn’t killing myself at the gym (although that did come later and had its own set of deep lessons).  I just woke up and put intent into my life.

The teaching that I always return to is really so simple: align your thoughts with your actions and your life will change.

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