Following My Intuition


When I was at Amma’s Amritapuri ashram in India last fall, I took a Tai Chi class for the first time. I fell totally in love with it. My top priority on returning to Seattle was to find a Tai Chi teacher. Within a short period of time, I found Viola Brumbaugh. She was exactly the type of teacher I was looking for. I immediately enrolled in her classes, and started attending them two times a week.

My joy was short-lived though. I had returned to Seattle in mid-January and in mid-February I hurt my back doing litter pick-up without using a litter pick-up tool. I have congenital spondylolithesis and scoliosis and have had problems with my back throughout my life.

In the past when my back pain has flared, it has only lasted two or three weeks at the most. This time, month after month went by and I was still unable to stand in one place or sit for very long. Driving was and is particularly uncomfortable. There has also been more nerve involvement than I have had during previous flare ups.

About a week ago, I sensed that I had reached a point where I could start doing Tai Chi again. It seemed like the classes might even promote my healing. So on Tuesday, even though I was still have problem standing in place, sitting and driving, I returned to class!

My intuition seems to be right. I’ve been to two classes now and have had no negative side effects. If anything, I feel better! And I am so happy to be learning Tai Chi once again.

One of the fantastic things about attending the class at this time of year, is that it is held in Lincoln Park, a large beautiful park in West Seattle. In addition to the joy of participating in this blessed practice under the huge trees, being there has given me the opportunity to take more tree photos. I took close ups of the tree below on Tuesday.

After taking the pictures, I ran my hand along the trunk to see if there were any loose pieces of bark. I took home a small piece of bark and something I am calling “orange plant debris” that was hanging on the tree. If you know what it is, please tell me!

Today I looked at those items under the microscope and took more photos!


Orange plant debris


9 thoughts on “Following My Intuition

  1. I’ve had some back/spinal issues for years also – mostly slipped/herniated discs (L3-5) complicated by osteoarthritis.I empathize..Wanted to mention that we have a QuiGong teacher here in Fairfield and I tried it after physical therapy couldn’t do much more for me.This was the precursor to Tai Chi and we were told that Tai Chi is the aggressive younger brother of the original (!)  I love it as it brings so much energy flow to my whole body. Do you have pain doing even basic asanas?  This ha been my bane for years.. Judith/Aditi (And I can’t bend either without causing a problem – ditto standing for long or sitting)


  2. I love that you love Tai Chi and believe that it is helping but I think you probably also hurt your back during your time as a Migrant Farm Laborer. I mean, check out your photo above, that young woman’s cocky stance and that heavy basket. (winking emoticon here)
    I lifted a much smaller bag of apples yesterday and am sore today!!

    By the way, I have apples, plums and pears ready to pick if you want some.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think the main problem is the congenital deformities. I don’t remember ever having a problem that summer, which doesn’t mean it wasn’t. Thanks for the fruit offer. I just may take you up on it!

      Liked by 1 person

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