I took a yoga class.  It took me 6 weeks, but I finally joined a studio. Yay me! Seriously….yay for me. I was being so weird about it. I had a million excuses not to go: it was too hot; too rainy; too busy; classes were too late or too long or too early; too expensive, etc…  The truth is, I was nervous. I’ve been going to the same gym at home for over 5 years and I go to the same 3 classes. So I was being weird and nervous and kept putting it off. Then I realized that the kids have jumped into new classes here…so I should be brave and do the same. So I went. But not to take a class….just to get the lay of the land. I didn’t know what door to go in or how to pay or where to check in or what I needed to bring. I don’t even have a yoga mat. Is yoga different in Australia? I went in and asked questions that made me feel embarrassed. I know…I am so weird. I signed up for a month of unlimited classes because it was a smoking deal. I may not be able to afford to stay after 30 days, but at least I am now set for 30 days to just show up as I please. Now…to actually go to a class.

My 30 day membership began that day, so it made sense to jump right in. I planned to go to a 5:15 class on a Wednesday night. Made sure Wes was home in time. Here is the crazy part. The class was an hour and a half (that isn’t the crazy part…but that is a crazy long class.) What’s crazy is that I realized  I had not been away from my children for that long since arriving in Australia. Yup…the longest I had been sans children was a trip to the grocery store or my morning walk. Crazy, right? 6 weeks and I hadn’t spent 90 minutes kid-free?!? Very overdue, and that’s when I decided no matter the cost, I will stay a member of this yoga studio until we leave Sydney. For sure.

I showed up. Told some lady with a laptop my name. It’s Deborah. I am Deborah and I do yoga. I always use Deborah when I sign up for things but then somehow expect people to call me Debbie. Not this time…I remembered and checked in as a Deborah, and she found me and I was good to go. I’ve got this.  The room (see picture above) overlooks my beach and it literally is right down the street. There were many people already there and they were all lying on their backs, some with pillows. Hmmm?  At my gym, people are on their phones and chatting before a class. This was different. I found a spot and looked next to me. There was a man who was probably in his 60s. He was wearing a shirt with a collar and a sweater. I am always fascinated when I see people at the gym in street clothes. The worst is jeans. He was either deeply mediating or asleep. When he started to snore, it was confirmed. I was very excited to listen to a beautiful Australian accent for an hour and a half, but it turns out my teacher was from Manhattan and had no accent of any kind. Disappointing. She began by waking everyone from their slumber and had us give a namaste bow to a neighbor. I tuned to my snoozing friend and he was awake and he had the kindest eyes. I thought it was weird to bow to my neighbor, but it ended up being a blessing. Now instead of the snoring guy in the polo shirt, he became the man with kind eyes. Reminded me of my dad.

The class was great. Waves crashing= the perfect background noise. I spent too much time thinking about other things, as I tend to do. An hour and a half is a long time and it was my first time, so I was soaking it all in. I have since attended more classes (the hour long ones) and have done better staying zen and being quiet in my brain. It’s a struggle.

Some thoughts running through my head as I went though my poses:

  1. Couples who yoga together? They probably don’t have kids. Wes is not interested in any sort of group exercise, so I can’t imagine. I feel like it’s “me” time and I don’t think I want him there. Is that mean?
  2. My teacher’s outfit is so cute. I want a shirt just like that. Then I remember I don’t spend $70 on work out tops…or any tops for that matter. But it was really cute.
  3. Yoga is pretty universal. I wasn’t confused about anything. What a relief.
  4. Is that my family on the beach (it was!) and where is Elle? I only see Luke and Mae. Is Wes even there? Okay….found Wes. Where is Elle? There she is. So much for an hour and a half break from them….Every time I stand up….there they are frolicking in the ocean. They are so cute. Glad they are getting exercise.
  5. When we were told to keep our gaze on something to balance….I kept picking Luke out on the beach in his orange rash guard, but he kept moving so that wasn’t helpful with my balance.
  6. I hear the lifeguards announcing “NO SWIMMING” on their megaphones, so why is my family still in the water?? (Update: they were ankle deep.)

And here are the reasons I heart yoga:

  1. Pigeon pose. My hips are so grateful for this pose.
  2. Headstands Feels good to be upside down.
  3. I get to lie down and relax with no kids fighting or asking me questions
  4. It’s an exercise I can get better at
  5. Makes me stronger
  6.  Makes me feel peace inside my chaotic brain

I was grateful to get my awkward first class out of the way. Met up with the family at the playground afterwords. My second class was at 6am, and I saw the sunrise. Teacher had a lovely accent and I loved the flow of the class.  I didn’t like the teacher in my 3rd class. She seemed like she wanted to be somewhere else.

Now I am in the groove and so glad I joined. Silly me for being nervous.