Wednesday, March 21, 2007

folding chairs and deep squats

so i'm in tai chi tonight, finally feeling brave enough to take the front row. i can't really see in the back row, and we run out of space when we do backward movement. so i braved the front. that is a sure fire guarantee you'll be all wobbly. as i was. i felt rickety. like my legs in that deep squat could only tremble. a couple times i had to stand upright to ease the burn. but squat i did. certain any moment i'd go over like a cheap folding chair in a heap on the floor.

at belly dancing yesterday we did figure eights. there are two directions for everything (at least that many), the vertical plane and the horizontal plane. when i realized we were doing horizontal figure eights, thrusting our right hip forward and drawing it back, alternately thrusting the left hip forward then circling back. to get this rhythm down, i had to close my eyes and see the eight i was weaving back and forth.

the music was lovely, we did figure eights for a while and my whole body was into it. then she added the arms. circling the arms from a starting position above the head, while doing a figure eight, circling hands move down to frame the figure eighting hips. talk about confusing. i had to shut my eyes and concentrate. but finally got it. like patting your belly and rubbing your tummy in a circle. once you get the hang of it, it comes relatively easy. i would, on occasion lose the rhythm, and have to break it down and start from scratch. arms above head in the pose, hips carving out a figure eight.

she's teaching us really hard stuff. she says if we get the hard stuff down, the easy stuff will be no problem. which makes some sense.

colonel sanders has brought a comfortable folding chair and joins us each week. i try not to think of him. or look at him. it still creeps me out that he is there. but whatever, he's an old guy, who am i to deny him his perverse pleasure.

the women's bodies are all different. one lady is 60 percent leg, and a little blocky trunk. she has trouble. i want to help her, but i'm not the teacher. i guess i could help her, but i stick to the back of the class.

other women are more evenly proportioned, or hide their disproportion well. many are showing up in full blown belly dancing costumes. the way we sweat, i can't imagine wearing all that clothing for practice. i'm still donning the bikini top and baggy pants.

it's amazing how standing in a deep squat and moving your arms around can make you profusely sweat. about thirty minutes in to tai chi, the instructor said,
you should be sweating now.

i start dripping immediately. i don't know what it is about that exercise, that meditation but it takes everything i've got. physically, mentally, everything. plus the room is hot, very hot.

if it's not the crazy breathing. the deep breaths alone are enough to make me wonder why i breathe so shallow, but the positioning of the hands, palms upright. at one point we did this snake pose, get this:

legs spread apart, feet parallel, deep squat, left arm postioned like a striking snake (curled, talk about carpal tunnel crampage waiting to happen), right arm extended palm up, sink in to squat and extend the arm while shifting weight from left to right leg.

it's been over a month we've been doing this, but she keeps adding new stuff. though i'm finding some of the moves coming easily, it's the transitions. the standing on one leg and balancing. a crane stand is bent left leg, right leg comes up and poses above left knee, arms are moving up while you are raising your legs, and to release arms move down and you drop leg, i can't remember where. probably by the door. it's crazy. but wonderful. i'm enjoying it immensely.

my grief is assuaged in these times of activity. my body releasing heartache. i am moving forward. making myself step out in to the future that is and has always been so bright.


Miss Audrey said...

Pervert or not, may I gloat and say I told you so? Couldn't resist!

All that exercise is making it hard for me to breathe! I need to do some cool down exercises just to get my heart rate back to normal. Maybe when I kick this bronchitis things will be easier...

siouxsiepoet said...

yeah, i just couldn't believe he'd come back. but i guess if i got to sit and watch (provided i was a guy), women shaking their money makers (ha!), i'd be happy.

he seems pretty happy.

go figure.

get well audrey.