HeuristicFireFlower's Reach for Highest Potential

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Post by Heuristicfireflower on Fri Jan 04, 2019 5:16 pm

It sure was M2M.

Total pounds made: 20 over 5 days. I'm pretty sure won't happen again. Exhausting. Have put half in freezer and the rest will wait for brother and family that will show up this weekend.

You know, every tamal I've made and eaten has never hurt me. They're never too spicy, but, pleasantly surprised my tum is, actually, quiet and kind which is interesting and something I'm very happy about.
Tamales Diet. If I eat 3, I lose my appetite for the entire day. No cravings for sweets (even chocolate is a distant ping) or any snack. Smile
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Post by Meant2Move on Fri Jan 04, 2019 5:36 pm

Not to sure it represents complete nutrition, but sometimes healing means backing away from traditional concepts of what we should eat. Sounds yummy at any rate!

I hope you have a restful weekend and the family visit is not stressful.
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Post by Narrowminded on Fri Jan 04, 2019 6:18 pm

Wow what a long, long day for you. Definitely a labor of love for your family.
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Post by Heuristicfireflower on Sun Jan 06, 2019 1:04 am

I wonder, M2M.  Corn seems to not bug me like wheat does.  But it will make me gain weight if I don't watch it.
NM, I suppose it was.  Mixed feelings about this.  I envisioned a fun group masa spreading with brother and SIL with conversation and story swaps.  A reason I bought so much stuff.  

Nope. Had car trouble and he cancelled.

Tamales was a family gathering event every year for as long as I can remember.  My brothers, now living away, would come home for tamales, refried frijoles and champurrado - Mexican hot chocolate.  Mom would make that with hot cooked milk, a stick of cinnamon, piloncio - solid brown sugar in the form of a cone, a chunk of Abuelita's or Ibarra's chocolate bar and some corn starch.  SOoo good.  The house would be filled with conversation, silly jokes, laughter and a warmth of family.  Memories are unavoidable. The sense of incompleteness inevitably wells up when eating homemade tamales. At these times I feel my age and some of the loneliness of missing all those who used to be there in my younger days.

Today I enticed (like I always entice) my cousin to join me for our favorite vanilla latte from a local coffee shop.  I basically kidnapped her and we spent the day watching Lawrence of Arabia eating some home made tamales.  It's telling that while she was over I was buzzing around contentedly heating up food and cooking beans.  I so appreciate someone I can talk and relate with, someone my generation. Even while she was on the computer looking up actor's stats, it still felt so nice to have company. Sadly, can't have deep conversations with my mom because of her bad retention.

Sigh. Motivation, is as always, finding the worthwhile for doing.  Will try to just go on remote and work on finishing school project....can't go forward with any plans without skills.  The other not so subtle prod to get on it is the piles of homeless trash that is accumulating across from our homes: A forerunner of things to come.


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Post by Lovebird on Sun Jan 06, 2019 3:00 am

Glad to hear you had such a wonderful family gathering, HeuristicFireFlower.

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Gorgeous. Seeing such beauty fills one with gratitude and joy. Thanks for sharing.

Since my original response, with quotes and all, for some reason vanished I'll try to recap without. Smile

It's not just the quality of the food that we eat (traditional style tamales definitely fit the real food list), but also how it makes (or made) us feel. You felt loved and cherished and safe and your body remembers that. Lucky you. As bittersweet as the memories may be due to them passing away. Don't forget that they'll always be a part of you, in your heart.

So sorry you went thru all that labour of love and they had to cancel... Sad Hugs.

Face to face contact beats internet every time...

Hope this year will be yours. Take care my dear HFF. Have faith. In yourself and the future.

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Post by Narrowminded on Sun Jan 06, 2019 8:35 am

HFF what a wonderful reflection. I could feel the warm memories, even if tinged with a bit of sadness that times cannot be the same.

Glad you had time with family anyway with coffee and movies and tamales.
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Post by Rig D on Sun Jan 06, 2019 9:25 am

Tamale event sounds sooo good. I'd gain at least 5 lbs if I were there.
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Post by Heuristicfireflower on Wed Jan 09, 2019 6:26 pm

Thanks NM,  I know.  I should remember they are at rest.  It's the living that suffer.   My cousin understands without words.  Loved having her over for a spell.
RigD, Right!   No scale hopping for me, I know better.

Am trying a new manual therapist that employs the Hendrickson Method of therapy and massage.  Very very expensive, but, I'm at wits end.  I can't really do my exercises in confidence to strengthen core because of constant twinges and spasms in lower and mid back.  The Hendrickson Method (HM) description claims to address this imbalance retraining the nervous system to allow the over stressed muscles to relax and the under-workng ones to come back on line so the spams and pulls will stop by re-balancing opposing muscles.  He explained this and much more to me, so I have enough confidence that he definitely knows the body and that this can address a whole slew of issues.  He did answer some un-asked questions including some to do with the Vagus Nerve and digestion/elimination issues.  
I told him my hope is eradicating the chronic spasms so I may begin a program of Pilates/body weight strength training movements to restore my confidence in this middle-aged body.  

A snippet of his philosophy: He suggested I become aware of the words I use in relation to my condition and think instead that the body is doing what it needs to do in these circumstances. I came in saying I was frustrated with dealing with....this crap. He reminded me that a muscle's (body's job, really) job is to protect and that's what it's doing even though the outcome is less than fun for me as an experience. True, Chiro. previously, explained weak muscles are not holding spine well and it's unstable, therefore, the muscles are working overtime to keep it from slipping out of form. So, HM therapist suggested I see the muscle as having done it's job and we are now retraining it to accept that it doesn't need to be hyper vigilant, anymore.

After 1st session felt the tightness between shoulder blades softened quite a bit, but, jury's still out.  Next day was a pain free, no disruptive tightness in mid and lower back.  The tightness between blades did not return.  Felt totally confident in my movements.  This morning, however, low back is trigger happy and discs feel swollen and touchy.  Sad      My thought is one session can't undo years of muscle, nervous system mess, so, I'm committing to 4.   Chiros, orthopedics, osteopaths, PT's have certainly helped, but never taken me completely out of the danger zone. I've pretty much accepted that I may lose a large amount if it doesn't help.  But, I'm really hoping it actually does.

P.S. All the Yelp and other reviews I found are glowing. In fact, when I was leaving office, therapist introduced me to another client coming in. First thing out of client mouth was "He'll save your life! He saved mine many times. He'll save yours!" Smile
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Post by The Walrus on Thu Jan 10, 2019 4:33 am

Very interested in your stories about tamales. I’ve made a discovery here in Australia - Roundup cannot be used on corn, and none is GMO. Much more old fashioned, not nearly as sweet but much more flavour. The important thing is that I seem fine with it! It was a huge problem for me in the U.S., at least the supermarket commercial varieties. I will admit to consuming a fair amount at present!
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Post by perennialpam on Thu Jan 10, 2019 4:35 am

Good news!

I noticed my back and bottom hurting bad at the end of my last beach walking adventure. I do note that the stomach muscles need to be stronger than they are. Obviously knowing doesn't help with the end result. I need to strengthen my core too.

Hope this works for you. I may follow your path and take care of this before I get spasms, etc.

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Post by perennialpam on Thu Jan 10, 2019 4:39 am

Good news!

I noticed my back and bottom hurting bad at the end of my last beach walking adventure. I do note that the stomach muscles need to be stronger than they are. Obviously knowing doesn't help with the end result. I need to strengthen my core too.

Hope this works for you. I may follow your path and take care of this before I get spasms, etc.

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Post by Narrowminded on Thu Jan 10, 2019 10:33 am

HFF hoping this new therapy does the trick and yes, one session of anything isn’t going to be a complete cure. Can’t wait to hear the end results.
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Post by Vh67 on Thu Jan 10, 2019 2:18 pm

I hope this therapy works wonders. Remember it took a while to get where you are so it may take time to heal.

I like his philosophy of saying positive things about your body and condition I have been working on that. The more positive I am about my body, the better I treat it and the better it seems to respond. It isn't always easy to do though. And it is sometimes hard not to be bitter or angry about my poor genetics.
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Post by Meant2Move on Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:49 pm

I really hope this therapy works for you. The concept seems valid, and I totally agree that one session cannot undo years of trouble. 

Talk nicely to you - you are a good person who deserves loving kindness!

Hugs!
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Post by perennialpam on Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:49 am

Well, no Hendrickson Method Practitioners in my area. Very interesting website. So gentle.

Good luck with this.

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Post by Heuristicfireflower on Sat Jan 12, 2019 2:40 am

Well now,  My chicharron experiment was a success.  Quite a process. Pretty similar you'll see on various sites.  boil 'em, clean fat off, dry them.  Did it, then fried them and my mom even got out of her sofa more than once to get herself some chicharrones tacos. As they came out, sprinkling sea salt and a powder labeled Fuego Spice Mix (contains cayenne and paprika) for flavor   Some kindly went up my nose and I was sneezing for a 1/2 hour.  Sacrifices.
Corn tortilla with sriracha sauce down the center, crispy cracklin's on top……   Hmmh, hmmm, good taco. goodtaco.  The not so fun part is cleaning all the grease off the pots and stove.  Podcasts and dish soap go well together.

TW,  How cool is it to have a great food that is cleanly grown as a matter of course and not bred, chemicalized or "designed" to be better than it can be.  Quite telling that you can enjoy without issues.  Smile
Don't know the source of the masa at the local Mexican food mart.  May be imported from Mexico.  If so, probably a better price and maybe farmers don't use expensive corn types or insecticides…. May inquire next time.  It is masa for tortillas they make in house.  Apparently the lye process releases more nutrients (this from  Netflix Mexico segment on both Let's Feed Phil and also Dave Chang's Ugly Delicious series) from the corn than if we just eat corn kernels.  

I've been eating dozens of tamales and absolutely grateful not a peep from my insides.  I'm thinking it's a fine corn mush, but also, the lard content (all pastured and rendered by your truly) that helps go down smoothly.  Another thing occurs to me is this is massive quantities of starch that gut bugs may actually be appreciating as this is an uncommon event for me eating high carbs like this.  Anyway, I'm so glad I can enjoy my childhood favorites alongside my mum.  Smile

PPam,  I love those kinds of walk adventures.  And I hate when spasms ruin the fun.  One thing therapist advised is to pull in my belly button when sitting up from the massage table.  He said it can shift some of the load off the low back.  I'm thinking because I'm actively engaging the abs.  Yes, it is pretty gentle.  Although there is some stretching that's lighting up my brain's "not like stretch" center.

NM, Thank you,  It's a kind of therapy where it almost feels like nothing is going on.  But, I've had simple key static very gentle pressure on specific points from an osteopath, before, and have definitely felt my nervous system tuned way down and my hip to upper torso untwisted with immediate results.  So,  there is a great possibility that HM therapist can move me further along.  I am hoping and praying so.

Vh6,  Yes, like over 15 years of issues before I found anyone to do meaningful specific therapy.  I told the HM therapist a little bit about my story and the emotional stress starting from handling the death of my dad and brother.  What he did was show me how to find a several memories using visuals, feelings, sounds from times when I was most happy/content - centering on a key feeling for me.  Key word: Freedom and feeling Secure.  Told me to think of it as a film I can put together and play and I suppose refine.  He reminded me that that feeling of calm and happiness can be brought up at will…..yes it can.   Another key to breaking the cycle of feeling  "trapped"  plus low self worth.   I think it may be as simple as just repeating good things.  He impressed me with affirming what is already working, thanking the muscles for having done their part in protecting the area instead of focusing on the bad and looking at things in an angry (unproductive) way.

M2M, Thank you.  I try to talk nice.  At least, I am aware of the words when the not nice ones appear. Hendrickson Method:  It does seem like it's possible as everything runs off and is dictated by the nervous system.  I truly hope it's a game changer.

The sessions have been interesting.  I lie down on a table with a warmer!  Smile   It's a series of patterns - Resist pressure from his hand on various points on limbs and torso and then release. He has me breath into the tight muscles and then release the arm or leg which he continues to support and breath out as much as possible while letting go of areas that I'm holding.  The concept is that breathing in brings in fresh oxygen, allows nutrients to flow, cells get their H20 needs  fulfilled and the exhale is the nervous system relaxing cue.  I've heard this before that the act of breathing out slowly and thoroughly is the signal that turns on the parasympathetic nervous system the rest and digest mode. Sympathetic being the fight or flight mode is the one we want to tune down with a series of patterns telling the brain we are not in stressssssss. Body protective processes are no longer required at this time.

As for breath, I've noticed this when just about to fall asleep that my exhales get longer and deeper until I'm unconscious.

The only thing I don't like is the group hug when the next appointment appears.   I'm sure it's part of the welcoming attention he wants his clients to experience, but, I'm jut not a hug stranger kind of person……not sure how I'll handle that next time,  maybe say I have a cold.

One more note to a good day:  Today my favorite stylist is in L.A. and cut my hair!!!! She's the only one who knows what to do with my curly mop.  Every stylist before her has either over-cut, thinned out (never again) or left me a pyramid head (worst blow to self-esteem, no makeup or dress can ever save one from this) to grow out in a long unattractive, distressed period.

I was seriously bummed when she moved to New York.  She plans to come out couple times a year for her L.A. clients and tomorrow is her last day in Los Angeles.  My hair will not be relegated to ponytail oblivion, after all. Yaay!!


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Post by Narrowminded on Sat Jan 12, 2019 9:49 am

Interesting stuff with this HM. So happy it seems to be working for you at this point. Many good take a ways for self practice.

Yeah a good haircut. Nothing like that to cheer a person up. Smile
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Post by Heuristicfireflower on Sun Jan 13, 2019 6:00 am

NM, I hope it will add to the healing.  And a great haircut can do wonders for ones outlook.  Smile

Pilates day!  I was late, but, had about 30 minutes left in session.  Amazing how much can be accomplished in a short period of time.  Left hip joint is achy, very weak. Very painful to lie on my side.  Impossible to do anything on a regular mat because the leg /hip is excruciatingly tender.  Hated the fascia foam rolling.

Amazed how impactful just sitting over the past 2 years has been.  Everything out of alignment and lack of breaks have done a pretty thorough job.  Even simple no added weight exercises are taxing.  Among stuff I did was:  
- Standing side leg lifts tightening and holding opposite stabilizing leg.  Alternated sides a couple times and left hip joint became shaky.
- Did some bridges, pulled in belly button pulled up pelvic floor while trying not to move torso then alternated raised foot.  
- Reformer leg bends while hip lay on a wobbly cushion.
- Pelvic Clock on wobbly cushion.

That woke stuff up.  Had a warm ache in glutes that felt good.  No spasm!!!  I'm hopeful!  SI joint can be stabilized by strengthening butt muscles!  The fact that it IS the SI joint and not a disc issue is good news.  Let's see how much I can improve before next session.

Went for an hour walk after then chocolate hunting.  Beautiful colorful sunset with brilliant irregular cerulean blue holes among the pink and mauve clouds.  Just needed cherubs with trumpets. When I stepped out of car I noticed a particularly un-colorful dark cloud overhead.  Despite the sun gleaming through the light-edged clouds, dark nimbus let loose a sudden downpour.  Barely had time to fish out my umbrella from back seat and then all was well.  The sound of drops pattering on my umbrella was relaxing. Rain makes me happy - Negative ions. Very Happy   Still, came to mind that all the recent fire canyon folks are now dealing with mudslides.  Never ending stress for these poor people.
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Post by perennialpam on Sun Jan 13, 2019 7:27 am

There is something I learned here or at MDA Blog about butt muscles and walking. I forget, sorry. But the idea is to tighten those muscles when walking. It feels odd and you can feel the stretch across the front of your body. Perhaps give that a try. This just reminded me that I should incorporate that again as I had let that slide and forgotten about it.

Thanks for the reminder....kinda.

I like rain too.
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Post by Narrowminded on Sun Jan 13, 2019 6:21 pm

Sounds like the good kind of sore in the places you want it. Good going at Pilates.

Sounds like a nice day for you overall.
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Post by Heuristicfireflower on Mon Jan 14, 2019 6:29 am

Yes PPam,  you may mean this on walking by pushing leg from butt:



Biggest thing I remember is not to take long steps which uses more quad.  Hard to engage butt to push unless steps are short.  I found it heoped to think of the landing foot as "grabbing" the floor, sort of scooping the floor towards you - I think I got that from Katy Bowman.  This is a fun and good mindful walking (keeps mind of stressful thoughts) trying to do it right.   :]

NM,  I think so.  I think my path out of tender everything is to work it then ice it till it gets stronger.   Left leg/hip joint has issues and vulnerable to inflaming.   Sad

Today this:
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Post by Narrowminded on Mon Jan 14, 2019 8:45 am

HFF - I love that pic.

Yes, ice and rest, along with some gentle work will get you there.

My right hip area is vulnerable. I’ve found that Omega 3’s really helps that area for me.
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Post by tomi1000 on Mon Jan 14, 2019 12:39 pm

Funny to think we need a tutorial on walking......... I mean, we start walking at around 12 months old. I have never really considered the mechanics of walking - its just a natural body movement. Can we be doing something that comes so naturally wrong? I'm going to try the "butt" walking to see if makes a difference in my weak, sore back. I have had back issues since I was in high school. Smile Thanks for posting that vid Smile
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Post by Rig D on Mon Jan 14, 2019 2:49 pm

IMO a lot of the walking issue is associated with taking too long a step, and having a big heel strike. To work on this with a simple minded approach, kick off your shoes and walk barefoot, you'll shorten up the stride pretty quickly.
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Post by Meant2Move on Mon Jan 14, 2019 3:35 pm

Excellent advice, Rig!
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