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THE REBEL MT technique 78 m a s s a g e & b o d y w o r k j u l y / a u g u s t 2 0 2 0 window. Knowing that the lungs are the main target of this vicious virus, holding my breath when I walk by anyone out there in the world seems to be an efficient— and completely reasonable—first line of defense. The problem is this: I take a deep breath, go out in the world, and attempt to not breathe in a pandemic. Then I get home and I forget to exhale. I forget that exhaling is half of what breath work is all about. I forget that letting go is part of the balance. I forget that I am holding my emotional breath as well as my physical breath. And the two are deeply linked. The right course of action has become a matter of opinion. It seems there is not one answer to how the world will reopen. And everyone is chiming in. It is difficult to know who to listen to. The same is true for how we begin to heal. Wading through the information and expert opinions about how to ease the pain and stress of a pandemic feels enormous. It's like finding out that ice might not be good for inflammation, and you've been recommending it to your clients your whole career! What now? Breathing Through COVID-19 By Allison Denney So this is what the world looks like in a pandemic—not what I was expecting. I cannot even remember the day I heard about COVID-19. It was like the weeds that show up in my garden and take over. I don't remember planting them. And yet, there they are. And now I have to garden differently. I have to shop differently, socialize differently, teach differently, and parent differently. All this as the chaos of the news and the daily COVID-19 data continue to swirl. There are, of course, some wonderful silver linings to all of this: the quietness of the mornings and the reemergence of wildlife has a timeless energy I've never experienced before. But the most peculiar new development is that I have been chronically holding my breath. As someone who has spent their entire professional life focused on the importance of breath and all the wonders that deep breathing can bring, somehow all of that is now out the

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