Sunday, April 12, 2009

Stick Out Your Tongue and Say "Om"

Last night I decided I needed to stretch my poor, weary body, which had been in a permanent blob on the couch for too long. I determined I would exercise using one of my yoga tapes. I went into my room, and popped in the tape to begin.

My two daughters came bouncing in and asked if they could join me. We have been talking about them taking yoga for some time now. The evening ("PM") tape is pretty basic and fairly easy. So I thought, This may actually be a pretty good idea.

However, as soon as the first stretch began, Amy was in tears.

"I can't do it!" she cried.

All I could think was, This is supposed to be relaxing.

Emma tried her best to ease Amy's concerns, as did I. But, alas, it was to no avail. Amy's temper tantrum spun quickly out of control into a level 4 tornado on speed. The contrast between the tape's instructor and her deep breathing, and Amy and her high pitched squealing was almost comical... Almost.

Finally, I showed Amy how to do Child's Pose, and told her she was welcome to stay in that pose as long as she wanted. (Which, by the way, is a fact: I spent most of my first few yoga classes in Child's Pose trying to regain consciousness after stretching upside down and inside out.) This seemed to placate her.

Emma and I got down to business, breathing, stretching and having positive thoughts.

Then Amy got bored. So she quit Child's Pose and began her very own series of yoga poses. Apparently these included, but were not limited to, climbing on top of me, sitting in my lap, playing with my hair and poking my stomach to find my belly button.

Again, This is supposed to be relaxing, kept running through my head.

I coaxed Amy into resuming Child's Pose for a little bit longer. But, really, not for long.

She was like a child trapped in the back seat of a car on a cross-country trip with no toys, games, movies, videos, or anything that would amuse her: "Are we done yet?" "How many more minutes?"

Then she got personal with me, trying to make me pay attention to her, and not the tape: "No offense, Mom. But, is you stomach supposed to do that?" and, "Your face sure is red, Mommy. Are you okay? Do I need to get Daddy?"

I felt all of the muscles in my body clenching up into a massive ball of ARGGG!!!
Why am I doing this again? To relax?

Finally, we were at the last pose, which is basically lying down on your back and breathing. Amy laid down and did well for two breaths. Then she pretended to snore.

I was almost certain I was going to need to take a couple of shots of whiskey to calm down from my relaxation yoga tape by the time the instructor bid us "Namaste." Finally, we were done, and I was ready to send the girls to bed and take a long, hot shower.

As we got up from this virtual torture we had just endured, Emma said, "Thanks, Mom." Amy turned and looked at me and said, "Mommy, that was fun. Can we do it again tomorrow night?"

"We'll see," I said, trying to sound light. What I really wanted to say was something that was very un-yoga-like. But I, after all, was the adult, so I figured I should act like one.

Emma did enjoy the yoga for what it was, and had very little difficulty with the poses or the stamina required. I think she really would like to do it again.

Amy is still better suited for jumping on a pogo stick while jump roping than practicing yoga. Oh well, I suppose she will get there soon enough.

For now, yoga is strictly for people eight years old and up. If you insist on joining in our relaxation and you are under age, you must take a shot of benadryl and some NyQuil and stay in Child's Pose the entire time. Then... we can relax...


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