Trauma perspective: feeling and numbing

The vlogging continues. This week: When reading and learning about trauma, please remember to check in with your own body’s wisdom. What research has helped us understand is deeply valuable, but we must also remember that the lens of research–and thus the conclusions that end up published–are influenced by the researcher’s perspectives and expectations. Certainly, high quality research accounts for that and attempts to minimize the negative aspects of perspective bias, but to research human behavior is necessarily as messy and complicated as the human itself. For questions, email me: maddybortes@icloud.com or begin a conversation on social media: instagram.com/maddybortes , facebook.com/maddybortesyoga , twitter.com/madalinabortes    

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Get the picture?

There’s a woman who’s bared a piece of her soul on the internet. When I needed to feel my soul’s honest cries for my attention, I used to read her words. Monday through Friday as I was commuting to a job that made no sense for my heart’s calling, I used to have an hour and a half each way; plenty of time for her words to entertain my soul—and they did. Words are the only other thing besides sugar, I’ve always voraciously eaten up. When I was in the fourth grade, I began retreating into novels—they helped me hide in plain sight, and I needed to hide without much fuss, for long periods of time back then. My father, who was at the height of his mental health violence, would not bother me if I was reading. So I read, and read, and read, till three in the morning sometimes…ate up every word. There’s a peacefulness in reading, regardless of how atrocious the truth revealed in the words may be. This week has brought a lot of turmoil to us all. The planet is crying out for attention and we may once more ignore the call. I know you

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New Schedule + A Memory

I wrote this a year ago. [pasted below from those Facebook memories] I remember the day. I had been walking around a city park with my dad. When I saw this trees I nearly dropped to my knees in awe. True rooted magnificence staring me in the face. The intent for classes today was to root deeply into steady energy and to recommit often. It sprung up and I felt my heart bloom–I had no idea what I’d say in class, no idea what the intent would be. The things that are most true, they stick around…you don’t have to look too hard, they find a way to find you. With love as wild as the branches…or my hair in this humid California heat (never thought I’d say that lol), Maddy New schedule: Sundays 10:30 – 12:00 Santa Barbara Yoga Center Wednesdays 6:30 – 7:30 pm Fitness with Rachel in Goleta Fridays 8:45 – 9:45 am Fitness with Rachel Saturdays 12:00 (flow) + 1:30 (yin) Evolation Yoga Daily intent: root deeply inward. Part two: do so to connect to your essence and power. Intention is a concept that alluded me for a long time. I still remember the day my

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Upleveling my practice

Part of upleveling my commitment to my intention for the year is showing up for what makes me uncomfortable. Being on video, definitely makes me uncomfortable. I notice I do this weird thing with my face and my voice changes…every time. Truly, those odd things that arise are hints that a deep layer of fear around being myself remains. So, to stay true to my intention, I’ve decided to do what brings up this fear over and over.

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Recent Publications

A most sincere thank you to B T W N, Pacifica Graduate Institute’s Literary Journal and Teach.Yoga, the project started by Elena Brower for publishing these poems.

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accountable, daily.

And if you finally started to hold yourself accountable, what would happen? Would you drift off over the edge of the sea, ashamed that you’ve fallen through on your word so many times before? Would you be so ashamed when you saw your own reflection in the calm undertow that you’d miss the still innocent and earnest heart waiting for you to feed it? Aren’t the promises you make to your heart just as important as the ones you so eagerly give to others? Let the fog envelop your doubts child and just try. Show up and try. every morning, like the seagulls that reliably fly in round’ 7:35 at the break of each new day. show up and try, perhaps one day you’ll fly. and if you never take off soaring, so what? For isn’t a life adorned with wholehearted attempts precious still?

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What does it mean to have a spiritual practice?

Last night I felt my soul saying goodbye to a special person in my life. I let my tears flow and I stayed with the wave of sadness that brushed up along the shore of my consciousness a few hours before. I’ve had enough encounters with spirit these past two years to no longer deem something a mere coincidence. It’s all interconnected. I fully believe that, down to the smallest detail. This morning I reached for an unscented candle. One was already by my bed, but it was scented and because of that it somehow didn’t feel appropriate. So I lit this other unscented candle, one with a feather stuck in it. The heat from the flame sinched* (lightly burn…it seems it’s not actually a word but it’s the only word–made up or not–that feels fitting) the feather and the scent reminded me of summer afternoons at my grandma’s house when she plucked the feathers off the chicken she would later prepare for dinner, the chicken I never wanted to eat. I started playing Krishna Das’ Mere Guru Dev on repeat and let my body move as slowly as it wished. Every other breath I’d see the flame from the

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It’s about worth.

Over the past week I’ve had a bucket full of further revelations and spiritual homework assignments. An overarching category that cradles a handful of the lessons is self-worth. I more or less denied that I harbored self-worth issues. While I didn’t often receive love in the way I needed it, I always felt worthy of amazing congruent with my needs love. But then how is it that I stayed in a relationship much longer than I should have, forgiving many more things than I should have, had I actually believed that I was worthy of top-notch love? How is it that I climbed on and off the sugar and food-for-numbing and self-harm bandwagon so many times that my brittle fingers lost track? If I truly believed that I was worthy of the most high-quality type of love, how then did I regularly fall through on the self-care commitments I made with myself? It’s because I was protecting that shield of illusion like the victim protects their abuser. It’s because I did not actually feel worthy of the type of love I proclaimed I deserved. It’s because when it really came down to it, I didn’t show up for myself like

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