Thursday, November 12, 2009

That's Gonna Leave a Mark

Monday’s child is fair of face.
Tuesday’s child is full of grace.
Wednesday’s child is full of woe.
Thursday’s child has far to go.
Friday’s child is loving and giving,
Saturday’s child works hard for a living,
But a child who is born on the Sabbath day
Is bonny and blithe and good and gay.

I was not born on a Tuesday, something that is painfully obvious.

I took dance as a child, a pretty little blond girl in a pink tutu. It was not something I excelled in. Not something I stuck with. Maybe I should have. Maybe I would have learned the fundamentals needed to be more graceful…or at least gain the ability to put one foot in front of the other without running into something or hurting myself.

At the shoe store I worked at in high school, I was often falling victim to one trap or another. Running into hooks, tripping over boxes, falling into sock bins. I was hilarious. I even won a fake award for being “Most Graceful.”

My lovely daughter seems to have inherited her mother’s poise. (And, funnily enough, she was born on a Tuesday.) At her first dance recital—actually, her second, since she refused to dance the first time and we spent twenty minutes crying in the hallway instead—we could see the difference in the kids who were naturally good at dance, and the others who had to work at it. Little Sister fell into the latter category, preferring to stand in the middle of the gym floor, mouthing the words to the song instead of performing the carefully choreographed moves.

As I aged, (Aged? Really? Yes, like fine wine or good cheese.) I hoped I would be able to execute day-to-day moves with more elegance. But that’s not the way it works. I am constantly putting myself in harm’s way, however unintentional.

A month or so ago, I was distracted at the Y, trying to get to class on time, worrying about changing my shoes, and chatting with someone at the same time and I walked into the leg press machine, which was being used by a rather large, muscular man. He felt terrible, but truthfully, it was my own fault. I was bruised for weeks. Just last night, I tripped over my own feet in the studio. There's just no hiding that kind of grace.

This morning, in the shower, I found a bruise on the back of my leg. It’s fairly new, and when I saw it, I started laughing because I know exactly where it came from. Monday night, in PiYo, I managed to kick myself in the calf. I don’t remember what we were doing (or rather, what we were supposed to be doing, because I’m fairly certain it was not kicking ourselves) but I do remember my foot making contact with my leg and thinking I was going to end up with a bruise.

That right there? That takes talent.

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