Wednesday, April 27, 2011

exercise-- it's happening!! It's really, really happening!

You know how you hit a point where you just can't take not moving anymore? I'm the type who LOVES movement. I love being physical. Mostly in a studio, where I can smell the wood floor and make shapes with my body, which somehow becomes the most important thing in the world to me while I'm doing it. But I can also be happy on a trail outside. Walking or jogging is ok, but I kind of love leaping, so if that's possible, that's what I do. If there's no one but my spouse and kids around.

The other day I posted on Facebook that I really cannot take another day without dancing, and I totally meant it. There are some days in my job where I'm just sitting immobile in front of the computer, totally failing to get up even to hit the restroom and get a bite. Some days, taking a big breath was big movement for me. For me, a person who likes to move, I had to tell myself, "Back it up, Buttercup. How did you get here and how are you going to get going again?"

I tried a couple times getting to a class regularly, but it was too much to do it and make the girls dinner AND make it to a class on time. And D doesn't get home until after most classes are in progress. So I tried getting a couple DVDs, but with a 4 and 2 year old, it's kind of difficult to get 45 minutes straight to complete a workout.

But I just couldn't take it any more. Last Friday, I had to take Sabrina for a visit to her new preschool. We had time to go to the gym and without even trying, I could make the 5:30 PM yoga class. It was pretty much the most cathartic thing I've done in months. The teacher happened to be a friend from high school, Malia, who has become this totally brilliant, higher-plane-of-spirituality-evolved yoga teacher who literally emits light (I'm just saying that to annoy you photon-counters out there. But she's really amazing.).

It was so incredible to be on my back on a mat by myself (in a class of adults, that is, but you know), that wood floor beneath my feet, the darkness of the room comforting like a womb. I actually shed tears at the beginning and end of class, it was that cathartic. Malia says things like "let it feel good" and does these excellent, gentle corrections that tell me she's got a sharp kinesthetic awareness. She says "let it feel good" even if it's hard work and the muscles are all burny and shaky-like (which is how I like my yoga and dance classes).

So it's a total shame that we're leaving the gym where she teaches that class, because we've GOT to save money because Sabrina's preschool plus Paloma's preschool will now cost as much as our mortgage. That is painful and scary. Also wrong and makes you want to do something about it.

But it's getting scary to me to not move my body in the way that my body wants to move. The physical health implications of it are scary enough, but I've finally also just had it in ignoring this part of who I am. Finding balance between all or none is essential. So I am going for it. I'm going to try out at least one yoga class a week at the lovely Yoga Company and I have signed myself up for a ballet class starting in July when I signed up the girls for their circus arts class. (They are beside themselves excited to try acrobatics and tumbling.)

And when I'm not doing those things, I'll be doing Bar Method DVDs at home. I'm lucky enough that there's a studio close by, but then we're edging back up those costs we needed to cut. I've found the personal and meticulous and rigorous approach of the Yoga Company teachers to be worth doing (and at-home yoga DVDs haven't been that great for me), so that's where I'll splurge on being in the studio.

I'm probably never getting back in the studio with Mr. Savage (the good old days!! He taught with a Debbie-Allen-from-"Fame" cane!! More muscle burning goodness). But at least I know I'll be dancing a bit, and moving daily and vigorously and sweatily, starting right now. There's a place inside of me that is now very, very content.