December 6, 2019
I went to my second yoga class today. I’m trying to get back into an exercise rhythm. Usually this means that I put on my workout clothes and then I do everything else, but exercise. I know that building this (actual working out thing) into my repertoire will help with my OCD, make my body and my psyche feel better in general. I kind of have to do it for my sanity.
Once I arrived at the studio, I realized that the class was not your normal yoga class either. We used our mat and some of the familiar props were offered. I recognized many of the names of the poses, but the music was faster and we actually built up a sweat. I heard someone refer to this as ‘Booty’ yoga, which is how it is pronounced, but I learned later that it is spelled B-U-T-I….like move your booty.
Oh, I get it.
The instructor was male. I almost did not go in when I found that out, but I gathered my courage by entering through the doorway to the classroom with some other people. I don’t know why I get so freaked out sometimes. I scanned the room and realized there were many people with imperfect bodies. I could not escape looking at myself in the mirror. I realized that I am getting a slight muffin top. It’s not much, but it is enough for me to feel dowdy and so old housewifey, but I’m not married to anyone. So, that sucks.
The instructor, let’s call him, Bob had short dark hair, which showed signs of grey, but he had a youthful face. On his ring finger, he wore one made out of bone or shell. My eyes seem to gravitate towards personal places, even when I don’t want them to. It’s kind of like when a man is talking to you and you catch them looking at your boobs instead of your eyes. It’s unconscious; Therefore, hard to control.
At one point during the class, Bob pulled off his t-shirt. Some of the other younger women were like, ‘right on,…ooh.’ I was like, ‘oh no…he is going to flick his sweat all over the place. It turned out that positioning myself directly behind the instructor may not have been that great of an idea.
When I am around tall, big men, (Jeffro Bodine types) who take up a lot of energetic space, and have open sexual boundaries to boot, I’m suddenly overwhelmed with feelings; visual pictures…sexual visual pictures.
I scanned my eyes down to his feet. Since this was a yoga class, we were all barefoot; No one could hide any feet abnormalities. I noticed his were quite large, which to some people, equates to something big below the belt. I felt embarrassed catching his eye when I was thinking about this. The tribal music playing had a moaning woman between beats. It seemed my mind was leading me on a wild sexual exploration for a reason.
Bob jumped from one side of an imaginary lined to another, then he barked out for his little chickadees to get on all fours ‘now.’ We wiggled our hips from side to side and some giggled at the stupidity of it all, and then we all did a few cat and cows, stretched our spine in downward dog, stood up to do mountain, and tree pose. Bob, I believe, threw in a few Russian Twists for the heck of it, but by then we were all sweaty Betty’s.
The room lights dimmed, and we rolled down on our side per cue. Half of the class remained in position, while others like me, got up halfway to quietly gather our belongings. I could not get out the door quick enough. I caught my reflection in a hallway mirror I had passed and realized I had a smile on my face, my posture was erect and that I had, perhaps, left self-consciousness behind
On the way home, I realized that it is okay to show up all the way as YOU, no matter what that looks like – laughing, crying, sweaty, messy, struggling, celebrating. This was a non-competitive space for anyone to explore their edges, discomfort, sensitivity, pre-conceived ideas, in order to find, humor, grace, ease. I think I will shoot for yoga class number three.