Category: Finish the sentence Friday

The things I’ve seen this morning

The things I’ve seen this morning

A woman hanging from a rope, another one draped on a stand with
her head hanging back. A man with his legs strung across his shoulders, another
one with his hands and feet hopelessly entangled while a third one sits calmly
cross-legged.
Those are the
things I’ve seen this morning
 at yoga class.
*******
It’s ages since I did a 55er. I thought I’d try one for this
prompt.
I won’t stop there though, because I have to tell you about my new
experiment with yoga. Let me begin by saying that I took it up once before for
about two years and found is quite magical. The twins weren’t yet two and I was
on the verge of going completely crazy. Yoga then wasn’t about weightloss. I
looked upon it as the only me time I was likely to have through the day. It turned
out to be way more than that. I always came away with a sense of peace and
well-being from the sessions. It helped that the instructor was coming home and
I had the kids close by.
With the twins entering their tweens, the ‘going crazy’ feeling is
closing up on me again and I thought I could do with some peace of mind along
with my exercise. Also, with my knees getting worse I knew my days with Zumba
were numbered. Yoga it had to be.
However, it has just not been the same.
To begin with the class starts right at the time that twin’s bus
arrives so I’m not there to wave them goodbye and that doesn’t make me too
happy. Yeah they’re almost ten but N makes this huge show of not wanting me to
go while hardly bothering with me when I’m there. Kids, I tell you! They’re
champions at starting off guilt trips. 
Besides, there are too many people at the class. When we had the
instructor coming home we were just three friends and had undivided attention.
My spondilitis has only made it worse. I cannot do many of the asans and that bugs me no
end, specially when it’s something I could do earlier or when I see people
around me doing it with relative ease.
It doesn’t help to have Zumba songs playing in my head during
meditation. I feel like I’m being unfaithful (To Zumba or Yoga, I haven’t quite
figured out). Sigh! 
Maybe another time, another class, another instructor. For now
it’s back to the walks and the Zumba.
So what’s your most/least favourite exercise?
Linking up to Finish the Sentence Friday. Thanks to Leanne for
the wonderful prompt  ‘The things I’ve seen this
morning…’ . 
and as always, warm thanks also to Kristi from Finding Ninee our
regular host. Do drop by to check out the other entries.

On standing up for yourself

On standing up for yourself

I am a non-confrontationist. I’ve been one all my life. During the decade or more of my working life there were a few times when I had a difference of opinion with a colleague, an argument maybe, but mostly I managed without much of a fight. When a co-wroker was specially infuriating I fretted and fumed endlessly but always in solitude or I would unburden myself before the hapless husband. Having done that I would always go back to work the next day with a smile on my face.
When people stepped onto my toes, I’d not just remove my toes I’d also have a smile for them. Nope I wasn’t a Buddha. I resented each unfairness. But I let it go because of my fear – an irrational dread – of creating a scene. I’d back off even if I was right, even more if the other person was rude, loud or overly aggressive. Some of it sprang from being a very self-conscious person. I wrote about it earlier here .
But I thought it was a good philosophy – I mean, why rankle someone when you can get by without?
Then the twins came along. 

It’s one thing to voluntarily subject yourself to unfairness, however small, and a whole different thing to watch the kids being subjected to it either by inclusion (because I wouldn’t stand up for them – ‘Let it go’, I’d say) or because they were picking up what I practiced.

I watched N agreeing with things she didn’t really like, letting people take her for granted, bending backwards for her playmates.

“There really is nothing worse than seeing your weaknesses reflected in your kids.

H was a different story. If I said ‘Let it go’ he’d say ‘But why? Isn’t it unfair.” It was. He was right. It was unfair and dishonest – dishonest to your own self. He bugged me till I had to face up to what I was doing:
“I was being nicest to the nastiest person.
That was the unpleasant truth about me : My best side was reserved for the person most likely to be nasty to me.
Once I knew the truth I could no longer talk myself out of answering some more uncomfortable questions. 
– Is that what I want the twins to be? 
– To give in to bullies (kids or adults) just because they were afraid of a scene? 
– To bear with untrue/unfair allegations because they didn’t want to put up a fight? 
– To give in to pressure because they didn’t know how to protest? 
– To always take the more peaceful, the easier way out of situations?

I knew the answer to that one. 

And I made myself start over. It isn’t easy to let go of a personality trait – one you’ve lived with for decades. However, I have started to ‘take the bull by it’s horns’ to use a cliche. I’m not good at it at all. Repartees don’t come easily to me. I still am dumbstruck by outright rudeness.
Yet I have begun to find my voice sometimes. I register a protest, even if it is a tiny one, even if it is much after the incident, even if it seems a tad out of context. I make myself go back to the offender and say what I have to – that I didn’t think their behaviour was appropriate, that I did not agree with the way they treated me or the kids.

It’s hard but I’m doing it. It’s not perfect either but it’s a start. Sometimes it’s necessary to tell the person stepping on your toes to take his feet elsewhere.

That’s a lesson I want the twins to remember.
***********

Linking up to Finish the Sentence Friday. Heartfelt thanks to Leah from Little Miss Wordy for this chance at introspection with her sentence prompt ‘Once I knew the truth I could no longer talk myself out of…’ Also thanks to Kristi from Finding Ninee  for hosting.

When I look in the mirror, I see..

When I look in the mirror, I see..

When I look in the mirror, I see….. N’s
small face peeking from behind me, a smile lighting it up like sunshine, “May I
please leave my hair open today?” she asks. I turn back and look at her, “If
you’re going to play, you make a pony, you know that.” “Okay,” she agrees
reluctantly taking over the mirror.
I move away to see H dashing down with his shirt half tucked in, hair askew,
collar standing. I make a grab for him, “You can’t go down like that. Take two
minutes to stand before the mirror and look at yourself.” “Excuse me,” he says
to N, with mock sweetness, squeezing in beside her, trying to smooth down his
hair with one hand while stuffing his shirt into his jeans with the other then
dodges me and runs away, collar still standing. N takes over the mirror. I
watch her tying a neat little pony, meticulously tucking her hair in before skipping off.
A sigh and a smile and I get on with my day.
When I look in the mirror, I see… a
cushion flying right at me. I duck and it crashes into its reflection. H tries to
look contrite while N chortles, “Bad aim!!” And I turn pretending to be angry
only to pick up the offending cushion and join in the fight. I see the look of
surprise on the twins’ faces turn to delight as I thump each of them in turn. I
win hands down till they decided to team up and have me down in a moment.
Finally we all dissolve into laughter and collapse onto the bed in a happy heap.
I’m really too busy for that mirror.
When I look in the mirror, I see …. 
Deep laugh lines, crows feet by the eyes.
A head of brown hair with some silver surprise.
A few frown lines up there on the forehead
For worries are part of a life well lead.
What I really see is a contented me
a contented me smiling right back at me.
But she has a complaint, or is it a plea?
She’d like to perhaps, see a little more of me.
Yes, I assure her, just a few years more
I’m fine, I add but I’m busy you see
Please let me be, for a few years let go,
I can’t stop now lest I miss the kids grow.
Once they’ve grown and have learnt to fly
That’s when we’ll talk, we’ll talk – you and I
But until that happens I have little time for you
a glimpse or two will just have to do.
***********
Linking up with Finish the Sentence Friday hosted this week by FindingNinee and AprilNoelle.
The prompt this week is “When I look in the mirror, I see..”