I’ve been blessed with amazing siblings and over the years we have done some fun things together. My sister, who is the best gift giver, has always bought my brother and I experiences instead of gifts. There’s something special about making memories that will last forever rather than just getting a cool thoughtful gift (Even though those are appreciated as well).
One year we went rock climbing where we learned that I will sometimes get a southern accent when scared and high in the air. Another year we saw a cirque de soleil sort of thing. And this year she gifted us circus lessons!
As you can imagine I was just tickled with the idea that I was going to be soaring high above everyone on the trapeze. And I couldn’t wait to look elegant and graceful on the acrobat tissu. (They are the ribbon looking things hanging from the ceiling.) I was so excited for this that I actually considered the possibility of quitting my job and joining the circus.
The class itself started with stretching which was fantastic because that might be the thing I am best at. When I was little I would sit in front of the tv in a full split for hours at a time. And when I got older I would tell my field hockey coach I needed to stretch more instead of running the perimeter because “It was important to be flexible as a goalie.”….It wasn’t really that important, but does a goalie really need to run? Some might say yes, but this freshman all-star team member right here would disagree.
I thought since I was so good at stretching that the rest of the class would be a breeze!!
I couldn’t have been more wrong.
Oh man, was I wrong.
We started at a rope where we were supposed to climb it. you know, like in gym class. Our instructor showed us the techniques with ease and everyone before me executed the challenge so gracefully! Once you got high enough you would pose for a photo. As you can see from the photos everyone nailed this. Except for me.
I got 2 inches off the ground and that was it. Like there was no way physically possible that I was going to be able to hold onto that rope for any longer than 20 seconds! But Even though I was 2 inches off the ground you bet your sweet bippie that I was going to pose.
Slightly discouraged from the rope we head over to the trapeze where we again learned the techniques needed to soar high above everyone. And again everyone looked so graceful…..except for me. But I was’t going to let that get me down. I laughed my way through the trapeze part and admired everyone’s adorable poses while they flew above me. This circus stuff is no joke!!
Now the last part was the ribbons, and I just knew I was going to be able to do this! I mean how hard could it be…you just flip around on ribbon. This was my moment to shine!! So I hop up on the tissu and bam I was doing it!! I couldn’t believe that I was actually nailing this! Look out circus world, HERE I COME! I felt like the most graceful person that ever existed.
Well that feeling lasted all of 1 minute. Until I looked at the photos of me and couldnt believe my eyes!!
Turns out….. I am not graceful. Like at all.
All my life I have thought I was a delicate graceful gentle girl, but Im not even close!!
So this got me to thinking, Have I been like this my whole life?! Is this just something new? After some research and some deep honest thinking it turns out I’ve never been graceful.
It all makes sense now….. My mom took me to dance class….Once. And then we stopped. coincidence? I dont think so. I think she saw me dance and thought, “She might be better at something else”
When I was in musicals I never got a dancing roll…. Coincidence?? Nope! They saw I had other strengths. Like playing the part of an old crockety woman.
When I was little you would find me in boys clothes with a short bowl cut sitting rather unlady like.
Circus school may not have been exactly what I was expecting, but I did learn a few things.
1:. Rope burn is a real thing. Even if you only go 2 inches in the sky.
2: Laughing is more fun than doing something perfectly. Sometimes I have to remind myself that it really doesn’t matter if I do something perfectly. Lesson: If you’re having fun you’re doing it right.
3: Not being graceful isn’t the end of the world. I’ve come to the realization that I should focus on my strengths and not my weaknesses. Im not graceful, I never have been but I do have other things Im good at……Like stretching.