Today I’m sharing simply one of my favorite written pieces of all time. It’s the story of my first yoga class and ultimately why the mention of the word yoga brings tears of laughter to my eyes. This story is 100% TRUE in its entirety. So if you think I embellished it or made it up “Karen,” my brain could not create this high-quality, crazy content you are about to read.
It was a scorching hot day in June, and I was home from college for summer break. Bryce and I were dating, but he spent his summers in California with his family. So in other words … I was alone, bored, and “unfit” must have been written across my face that day. My mother had suggested taking a yoga class that she noticed posted at our local community center. I had never tried yoga before so I thought, why not … this will be fun? I signed up online for a 4:30 class on the exact same day.
Picture me in my Barney the Dinosaur colored purple Lululemon Wunderunders leggings, a black Nike sports bra, and a white Target crop tee as I headed in to my local community center. This is a place where retirees hangout and walk the track with 1.5Ibs weighted dumbbells. You can hear the faintest sound of, “Celebration” by Kool and The Gang playing on repeat in the background. You have a better chance of running into your mom’s best friend’s older sister, Kathy, here than you do any attractive guy. At $40 a month membership which includes a pool, it’s not only affordable but close to home. Stepping in the doors looking like absolute death is not a problem at this gym. The older adults will give you sarcasm infused compliments during your workout. It’s a vibe.
After finishing my lift for the day, I decided to cool off in an exercise classroom surrounded by mirrors. I realized that I had a few minutes before my class began so I went ahead and secured a germ invested pink yoga mat for myself. I know people spray those things off, but do you really trust them?
Anyway I’m sitting on my mat, scrolling on my phone carelessly, until … I hear my name.
New character development:
“HAYDEN WARD. IS THERE A HAYDEN IN HERE?”
There are a total of six people in the room all looking around for the lucky person named Hayden Ward.
Hesitantly … I raise my hand.
“GREAT! LOOKS LIKE IT’S JUST YOU AND ME TONIGHT FOR YOGA!” — said instructor.
*This is all capitalized because he was not speaking. He was doing the yell thing that all dads do while ordering food at a drive through window.
“IF ANYONE ELSE WANTS TO JOIN US, FEEL FREE TO GRAB A MAT AND STAY. OTHERWISE, WE GOTTA KICK YA OUT BEFORE CLASS BEGINS IN TWO MINUTES.”—said instructor
Literally everyone that was in that room left in seconds. Are you kidding me?
It wasn’t until I moved my mat to the other side of the classroom that I got a glimpse of my yoga instructor’s outfit/costume.
Let’s start from the bottom up — black cowboy boots, black velveteen leggings with flames crystalized on the upper side of his calves, and a white t-shirt (it was plain — obviously, balancing the rest of the look). The outfit was complete with a purple headband tied around his forehead and with a low pony-tail highlighting his gray, long hair.
I think I faintly heard Tim Gunn’s voice in the background saying, “Make it work!.”
Truth be told, I’m not sure what I thought I was going to get out of this yoga class after this point. I didn’t think it could get anymore interesting. But boy, was I wrong!
Ten minutes into the class and I have learned how to stretch.
Then the actual yoga part begins.
We start working on our breathing as we make our way through the first flow. I wouldn’t say that I was relaxed in any sense of the word, but I thought I could get there. It would be nice to de-stress for the next forty minutes or whatever.
All of a sudden, I heard a noise. It was a fart!
Not my fart, but someone else’s.
Then it hit me… my yoga teacher farted.
IT WAS JUST US TWO IN THE ENTIRE ROOM.
He said absolutely nothing and went on with the flow. At this point, I’m like “Oh my god, was that me?”
“SNAP OUT OF IT HAYDEN … that was not you!”
We hit the downward dog position in our flow and another fart is blown.
No acknowledgement. Two back to back farts! What did this man eat? Was he just so relaxed that bowel movements are now a part of the flow?
Halfway through the class and several farts later, a guy my age opens up the door to grab some equipment out of the closet in the room. He picks up a medicine ball and to my surprise just stood in the room staring at me with it. Normally people get what they need and leave.
Instead, this dude just stood there … as my instructor and I went on with the yoga flow.
“Umm…… Hayden……. ummmmmmmm, can I have your phone number?” —said guy my age.
I was so taken back that I was frozen.
Here was a guy that I have never seen before, using my name (because my instructor shouted it out before class), and asking for my phone number mid flow during a yoga class. How does this even happen? Brave guy.
All I could manage to say back was, “I’m sorry, I have a boyfriend.”
The yoga instructor bursted out laughing at my response and told the guy, “BETTER LUCK NEXT TIME!”
The poor guy left without a word and I blacked out. I couldn’t even tell you what else happened during that class.
I hope my storytime made your day a little brighter. As you practice your yoga flow at home, take a moment and smile remembering my flame bedazzled, cowboy boot wearing yoga instructor, and his healthy digestion. In case you are wondering, that was my first ever yoga class. It was not my last but it was the last with that particular instructor. Moving forward, I have grown in my appreciation for yoga and meditation. It might be just what you need during these challenging times. Head to YouTube for some great resources and develop a new passion for flexibility and relaxation. I hope everyone is staying healthy. Until next time, Spread Kindness.