Kickbox into the light, my children
I took my first kickboxing class on Sunday and I didn't even have to travel back in time to 1998.
I showed up with a water bottle. I should have shown up with an ambulance. It's not that I'm out of shape; it's that I'm terribly out of shape. Like aging-walrus-trapped-on-a-nude-beach out of shape.
So, there I was with a room full of extremely fit sadists who were there because this is their idea of a good time and not because their supposed friend, who is about to get a bill from me for a pair of crutches, "thought I'd get a kick out of it."
I did get a kick out of it. Especially when I went to roundhouse kick the bag that was unfortunately named "12-year-old boy" by the instructor due to its size and weight, missed it entirely, and kicked my own reflection in the mirror. And, it was definitely a kick when I used the wrong foot to crossover and tripped myself. Float like a wingless butterfly, sting like a one-legged, asthmatic bee.
In between my jab-jab-uppercut and sweep-jab-poke myself in eye, was the instructor. Oh, the instructor who kept coming up to me and saying, "If you're in a fight . . . " as if the possibility existed. I love him for that. I spent the rest of the class imagining myself wrestling another mother to the ground in the aisles of the grocery store for the last Family-Size box of Honey Nut Cheerios with the 4 bonus Box Tops.
Maybe this could come in handy.
During the last ten minutes, as I pretended to complete thirty push-ups (I did 5) and took a water break (while hiding in a corner behind a larger punching bag), I realized that maybe I did truly love myself just the way I was—alive.
But, I'll try again because I believe in myself and in the self my instructor believes is a cage fighter. And I also believe in making my friend pay for ever inviting me to this class by spectacularly embarrassing her for weeks to come.
Bethany Thies is a writer and the proud mother to four, young Vikings. She is the author of the parenting blog, Bad Parenting Moments and the chronically unread poetry blog, Room for Cream. She can often be found searching for socks, keys, discount non-perishables and a bathroom lock her children cannot pick. Bethany's work has been published in our bestselling humor anthology: "You Have Lipstick on Your Teeth," on several parenting sites and, when they'll have her, in old fashioned black and white in her local, independent newspaper. Her children are unimpressed. Follow her on Twitter @BPMbadassmama and Facebook.