breakfast, aikido, boundaries.

This has probably been the busiest weekend since I went to Denver for the aikido seminar--Friday was work and aikido, Saturday was aikido and barbecue and spending time with a friend, today was more hanging out followed by a nap and an aikido class in Fremont that came highly recommended (and met expectations by being really cool). My level of tiredness is definitely an issue in how often I can train, but I'm pretty sure my knees can take it now, as long as in my spare moments I come around to focusing on relaxing my lower back (tension in my lower back tightens some interior leg/hip muscle, which pulls on and deforms my knees and makes them hurt a lot; happily I've discovered that if my knees hurt, with about ten or twenty minutes of focusing on relaxing my back, they stop hurting).

I'm at a little bit of a plateau in my training right now. I'm getting better at it, but the work that I've been doing has been sort of more advanced stuff, and a lot of conceptual and energetically-focused work, rather than solid basic techniques. The dojo sort of feels like no one expects me to advance, too, for some reason; to tell both sides of the story, though, I've been really tired the past few weeks, and I haven't been taking the time after Friday and Saturday classes to stay and work on 5th kyu test material. Eventually I'll talk to Sensei about this, but for the moment I've decided just to keep training, and that my--what, irritation, anxiety, I guess--about this is just an ego thing, me being concerned with "goals" and "advancement". Not that those are unreasonable or unimportant, but it doesn't matter so much where our practice gets us, as it does that we do our practice. The doing is the important thing, not whether our practice makes us happy or unhappy.

It's fascinating now to have a friend in a bit of a crisis, and there is in fact very little for me to do. I can be a friend, offer hugs, smiles, and support, but in the end these problems are not mine and really don't have anything to do with me, and I don't feel like I'm taking any responsibility for them. And even though I wish I could just make everything better, I'm very happy that those problems are not mine and that I recognize that and draw that line. (And also that I get off the phone and stop being communicatively supportive when it's time for me to go to bed, because I have to work tomorrow and this isn't my problem to stay up late for.)

I wonder who I am. I'll figure it out eventually if I stop asking.

I have a new shower curtain, and swanky rolling curtain hooks, and a non-slip mat for the tub. That shit is expensive, but worthwhile, as the old shower curtain is really nasty (Rachel agreed with my recurring guest that new shower curtain was long overdue, and it does class up the bathroom a bit). The shower curtain has pockets on one side, which is just the coolest thing ever.

No clean sheets, and yet I feel the siren call of my bed...