I am probably going to regret writing this, but I am still laughing about it almost 5 hours later, so I just can’t help myself.
Last week I joined the fitness center in the office where I work. They offer some classes throughout the day, and also have several machines, weights, and all the fitness equipment you could ever need. I’ve been trying to up my fitness game, so I’m starting small with a few walking sessions on the treadmills and a weekly yoga class. Tonight was my second yoga class.
As soon as I finished work, I excitedly ran down to the gym and changed in the locker room for yoga. I was running a little late, so I walked in while the other ladies were starting their meditation and breathing that always begins the class. Clumsy me managed to drop my water bottle, and trip over my mat as I was trying to get settled. And that wasn’t even the worst part. The first few moves were uneventful, some basic leg stretches with bands for resistance. About 15 minutes into class however, things went down hill fast.
Have you ever heard of the “happy baby” pose? It’s one where you lay on your back, lift your legs up, and hold your feet with your hands.
Now if anyone reading this happens to know me personally, I’m betting that you can guess what happened next. For those of you that don’t, I will simply start by informing you that I am not a very classy girl. And in my defense, I’ve been eating a lot of fiber lately.
I totally farted. And then I started laughing… which made me fart again! The other women in class were trying their hardest to ignore my outburst, but my eyes were leaking I was laughing so hard. That’s when someone in the class snorted while they were trying to stifle their laugh, which only made me laugh harder. And when I laughed harder… I farted again.
Now, if this had happened a few years ago, I would have crawled out of that class so fast, and changed jobs just to avoid seeing any of these people again. I would have been too embarrassed to laugh at myself, and would have had an anxiety attack instead. I would have sat in that class, frozen with fear, and praying that no one noticed. I would have spent the entire class awkwardly trying to pretend it wasn’t me, while my brain replayed the scene over and over again. A few years ago, I would have said that tonight was the last yoga class I will ever attend. It would have been enough for me to give up on my fitness goals completely.
But today? Today I could laugh about it. Today I made some new friends while laughing about farts. I turned a yoga class into a room filled with toddlers making fart jokes. And do you know the best part? The other women in the class told me about times when they did the same exact thing!! Somehow they managed to make me feel better about the situation, and didn’t criticize or laugh at me. The instructor even used my bodily functions to explain how the poses we were working on were in fact known to help with gas relief. I walked out of that class feeling lighter than I have in a while. Both physically and emotionally.
At this point, I am positive that some people are reading this and asking themselves- why on earth did I just waste 5 minutes of my life? But, I am hoping that there are a few people who will read this and realize that everybody farts. And sometimes at the most inopportune moments in life. We all have moments where we embarrass ourselves (some more than others), but how we react to those moments can shape who we are. We can either let embarrassment ruin our day and cause us to withdraw from the world to avoid future humiliation, or we can take ownership of who we are and find a way to keep living.
So embrace who you are, and remember that everything we go through shapes us into who we were meant to be. And don’t forget to be mindful about what you eat before taking a yoga class.