I am not sure what gave me the boost of confidence before entering the YMCA that day. But it was dangerous. As I walked in with an extra skip in my step, I looked at the schedule hanging on the door of Studio 1 and noticed a class called “Turbo Kick” started in 10 minutes. Hmm, sounds more fun than the elliptical. (Big mistake.)
I should have taken some cues as I saw a myriad of very fit looking women waiting around in the lobby, all in cute elastic work out get-ups, and I stood there with my Adidas shorts, old basketball t-shirt, and chicken legs. I was not tanned, or toned, or terrifying like any of these women. I asked the lady with the mic on her face (who was clearly the instructor) what the class was like on my way in, “Oh, it’s just like Kick-boxing combined with Insanity.” Those were her actual words. Insanity. (For someone who struggles just to keep up in the Electric Slide at weddings, the only Insanity that I would be proving that day was my own.)
If only I would have walked away then. But alas…
Within the first five minutes of “Turbo Kick,” I was completely lost. The instructor was barking out commands that sounded like a foreign language. “Upper cut! Cross over! Back kick! Front kick! To the wall!” Huh? I was soon in a stampede of women and trying not to get run over.
I looked like a drowning victim. Arms and legs flailing in every direction. If I were in a pool, there would be whistles blowing, and lifeguards jumping in after me, and people standing by with their faces in their hands.
I was bad. I mean, really stinking the place up, and only 15 minutes into it, too. Unfortunately, the class was 55 minutes long. But I was already committed now. I tried to look natural. But as arms and legs flung wildly in every direction, and I did my first “burpee” since junior high track, nothing was natural about what I was doing. Or trying to do. I’d watch the instructor, then the lady in front of me, then the mirror, then the window, desperately hoping (praying) my husband didn’t feel the need to check on me.
Of course he did.
Later that evening, after he was done cracking joke #492 about the whole episode (for he had a lot of material to work with), he said, “And what were you smiling about in there anyway?”
“Because when I saw my reflection,” I confessed, “I thought ‘What if he’s watching right now?’ And it just made me want to laugh!” I couldn’t help it. There comes a point when you are so awful, it’s actually funny. I guess I would call it, “Insanity.”
This is a lot like being a new mom.
When you become a new mommy…you suddenly enter this new world you didn’t even know existed. Motherhood. You are surrounded by all these ladies moving at incredible speeds, who seem to know exactly what they are doing and you are left spinning around not even know what direction you are supposed to be going.
I’m only 18 months into motherhood, but Turbo Kick resurrected a lot of “new mom” thoughts that I’ve been feeling since the start of motherhood, and I’m not ashamed to admit them:
1. “I have no idea what I am doing.”
New moms have no experience, none. Zippo. Therefore, no matter how much you studied your “What to Expect” books, or baby-sat the neighbor kids…you can’t be fully prepared for what’s ahead of you. Don’t expect to hit the ground running. It’s okay to hit the ground and just…lay there for awhile. You will crawl eventually. You are new to this, and you will learn.
2. “I am surrounded by women who are better at this than me.”
Let’s just get this out there. It’s probably true. If you have friends with any mommy experience at all there’s a good chance they know the steps better than you. They know what they are doing, and you don’t. And that’s okay. You can give yourself some grace realizing, “I am a beginner at this!” Be patient. Don’t try to keep up with the mom whose been doing this for ten years, when you’ve only been at it for ten months. Don’t compare, (it leads to despair.)
3. “I am surrounded by mirrors.”
Not only are you surrounded by Super-Mommies…but you are surrounded by mirrors. These mirrors are those lingering questions in your head or your heart that keep saying things like, “You should know what you’re doing. Get it together. You aren’t good enough. You’ll never get it right.” Ugh. Mirrors remind us of our weaknesses and flaws. Look to God instead, He is where your strength comes from. He made you to do this, and He will give you what you need. In His time.
4. “This is hilarious.”
As a new mom, you can choose how you will respond. For me, that day in Turbo Kick, I chose to laugh. I could have been too proud, and walked out. I could have been too embarrassed, and cried. But I chose to laugh. I was SO out of my league! New mom’s, if you feel like you are clueless, laugh. Maybe you are. Give yourself permission to fail, to experiment, to grow. Some days you will cry, whine, or be angry with yourself, and set sky-rocket expectations to “do it better” tomorrow. It’s part of being a mom.
You are allowed to laugh.
Because…this is hard. And because laughing–is evidence of humility. Of growing. Of not always knowing what you are doing 100% of the time. Whether you are a new mom or not, remember one of the the qualities of the highly esteemed “Proverbs 31 Woman” that we don’t often hear about is:
She smiles at the future.
She can laugh at the days to come. (Prov. 31:25b, NASB, NIV)
You can laugh. You are learning, we all are are. Welcome to not having it all together. Welcome to growth.
Welcome to Insanity.
Welcome to Motherhood.
Anne (Grace is my Superhero) says
I love this! You have great courage to first participate in that class and then write about it! I have nominated you for the Liebster Award. I love your writing that is always leading others to truth and love and freedom! Here is a link about the award:
Thank you for reading! Yes, I don’t think I knew what I was getting myself into! LOL. However, I am glad God still used it to teach me about motherhood. Also, thank you so much for nominating me for this award! I am truly honored!
Haha, Rebekah, first of all this story cracked me up!! I am an exercise fanatic now, thoroughly knowledgeable in about every type out there. When I first started out though I was you exactly!! I do hope you go again–it WILL get easier and SO MUCH FUN! 🙂
However, whether you choose to or not I loved the way you tied it all together to mommy hood, especially the part about laughing. I can tend to be the one to beat myself up whenever I fail, make a mistake. What a great scripture to walk out this new adventure: to do this thing laughing!! I LOVED this!!!
Thank you for your encouragement! lol. I will “consider” trying another class. A much SLOWER class. Haha. I have a lot to learn though! 😉 And yes, I too can take myself too seriously (at times.) But slowly, I’m beginning to realize the freedom in being who Christ made me to be, and the humility it takes to laugh, and to grow. And I love that the Proverbs 31 woman also has a sense of humor..she’s not just a robot who is amazing at running a household. I’m so thankful to be in this journey of learning with you!
P.S. I will let you know where my exercise endeavors lead…;)
I have had the most enjoyable and hilarious journey through your blog tonight! I am amazed at how one of your posts can be so deep and pensive, and then the very next one has me literary cracking up!! That was what this one did to me, by the way! Part of the reason being that I just recently tried Turbo Kick for the first time and was reliving my own experience. 🙂
Basically, I just want you to know that I love your blog. Even though I have not met you and really don’t know you, I admire you for the person you are. I’m hooked on your blog 🙂 Have a wonderful weekend!
Thank you so much for your words of affirmation. You have encouraged me so much this morning! Thank you for spurring me on to keep writing! Also, I had to laugh when I heard that you recently attempted Turbo Kick..lol. Hopefully you did better than me, lol! We laughed about my “experience” for quite a while at our house. 😉 I’m glad we crossed paths. Also, I am looking forward to reading more of your posts as well! 🙂
I stumbled across your blog via FB & love it! I’m only 4 months into motherhood but, as I read this I was saying “yes” to everything! & laughing as I agreed! Great post!
Haha, I’m glad you enjoyed it!! Unfortunately everything in this post is true, lol. But the comparison to motherhood, and stumbling through, is so true to my experience. I hope you keep laughing and smiling at the days to come, even when it feels you might get stampeded by all the more experienced mom’s who know what they are doing.;) THanks for reading! So glad to have you!