My regular teacher was unexpectedly replaced
By a woman who ran the class in slow motion.
I spent the first ten minutes scowling at her while she
ambled in three minutes late,
ever so slowly set up the music,
blew her nose,
and set up her equipment.
After each set of ten reps we stretched the muscle we were (supposed to be) working.
Mostly, I worked my frown muscles big time.
Eventually, I noticed that my body was very tight.
I was feeling irritated.
‘She’s wasting my precious time’
‘I don’t have another hour to get a proper workout in’
‘This is not a senior’s class’
‘They should’ve warned me that Tonya wouldn’t teach’
‘They shouldn’t have meetings during my class’
Which led to me to…
glare at the teacher,
mutter to my classmate,
interrupt the teacher’s flowy slowy voice to ask her to up the intensity of the class,
and generally spoil my own experience.
My behaviour reminded me of the Me I used to be.
The one I didn’t like very much.
The one who blamed other people for her unhappiness.
I didn’t want to be that Me.
That Me would be rude to the person I blamed for my discomfort,
Then feel bad,
Then try apologize,
Then maybe be mean to some innocent who happened to be close by,
Then maybe snap at one of my children.
Ouch. Hurts my brain.
And other people’s feelings.
Don’t like that Me much.
Luckily I recognize the warning signs now.
Pretty simple really:
Anytime I don’t feel great,
I know there’s a thought waiting to be replaced.
So… during my very lukewarm muscle workout
My brain worked overtime
To find thoughts about this class that felt better.
It was hard for me
But I worked it hard.
And here’s what I came up with:
‘she’s doing her best’
‘this is the workout I was supposed to have today’ (because it’s the workout I’m having, and I’ve never yet won an argument with reality)
‘I can still play fullout’
‘yay me for showing up here’
At the end of the class
I thanked her politely,
(made a mental note of her name to avoid her classes in future)
And went home feeling grateful for the opportunity to show myself that I really am the master of my experience,
No matter what that experience may be.
Next day, would you believe, I was sore in places that haven’t hurt in a while.
And the good news is
It wasn’t my head.
And it wasn’t my children’s feelings.