Earlier tonight I found myself in the position of having to make a decision. On one side of the divide I had the sane choice, the choice that made sense, the expected choice, the one I would normally make. On the other side I had the ridiculous, the absurd, the embarrassing and the oh so far out of my comfort zone that we weren’t just on another planet, but galaxies away.
Do you ever do something that makes you laugh for days? Something that is so incredibly ridiculous that you think This could only happen to me.?
Yeah, it’s been awhile since I’ve had an Only Me moment, so I suppose I should have seen it coming. And yet, nope, I walked right into this one.
Well, if you get technical, first I got in my car and drove a couple of blocks, but then I quite literally walked right into one of those Do I? Or Don’t I? moments.
The rec center near my house is hosting various free classes to encourage people to try new things and sign up. Tonight I noticed there was a free Twist and Shout dance class just a couple blocks from my house and I thought I’d check it out.
The sign on the door said Twist and Shout is in the gym, so I went to the gym and was pointed toward a woman and a tween girl stretching on one of the mats. I joined them.
We stretched. We chatted.
The woman said “Ok, so let’s start on the trampoline.”
Apparently I assumed the Dance Class part. It was in fact a cheerleading stunt tumbling class!
Do I Dare to be Ridiculous?
My first reaction and the words that came out of my mouth were “Oh! My daughter would have loved this, but I thought it was a dance class. Nevermind.”
But then I stood there and waged an internal battle.
I could do the expected. I could walk away and go home to my comfort zone. I could laugh at how ridiculous I felt after misreading the brochure and chuckle with girlfriends over a glass of wine.
Could I? Did I dare? Could I possibly go along for the ride and say yes to the opportunity life had thrown at me?
I looked at all the young girls practicing on the tumbling floor near by. I considered how ridiculous my nearly 40 year old Mom body would look next to the lithe and fit competitive gymnasts flipping and bending and bouncing next to us.
I thought about my hips and my back and my decided lack of limberness. I pondered the likelihood of throwing this out or dislocating that, of how silly I’d look trying to keep up with a 12 year old girl.
I reminded myself that one of my goals for not just the new year, but for the new me, is to say yes. It’s a simple concept really. Just say Yes whenever possible.
Say Yes to things that push me out of my comfort zone.
Say Yes to invitations to try new things or meet new people.
Say Yes to things that are good for me, that make me happy, that inspire me.
Just Say Yes.
So I stayed.
I stayed after another 5 kids, ages 7 to 12, got in line behind me.
I stayed and took my turn doing a handstand followed by a front roll.
I stayed and practiced my cartwheels and my roundoffs (apparently I’ve been doing my roundoffs all wrong for the past 35 years).
I stayed and did somersaults and roundoffs into the foam pit then felt like a turtle on its back trying to dig myself out of the pit.
Not only did I stay, but I had the best darn cartwheel of the entire group – plus a perfect handstand! Seriously, the instructor raved about them. Who says practice doesn’t make perfect? Give those kids another 30 years and I’m sure their cartwheels will be as pretty as mine too.
Tonight I said Yes to looking ridiculous, to feeling foolish, to embracing the laughter, and to creating a memorable moment in my life.
Not only that, but I came home and called my daughter to share my story. So I also taught my kids to not take themselves too seriously, to not be afraid to try new things – no matter your age, to forget what others think of you or who else is watching and just do it.
I’d say that’s a success. Now it’s time to go have a laugh with my girlfriends over that glass of wine.