Spinning School Dropout

“It’s a poor sort of memory that only works backwards.”
Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking-Glass

Still trying to decide on an actual banner. Indecisive!!

I am having a festival of exercise right now. I have time, programs are running HELLA specials, and I have about two months to get fitter before I get dumped out in a job site. I am told repeatedly that being a slow loris can really increase your odds of getting laid off. I have time and a wee bit of cash to throw at this, so why not get as fit as possible in the next eight weeks?

I decided to try spinning class on Monday. SPINNING. What? I haven’t been on a bike in about 15 years, no joke. I was like EHHH I can pedal in place for an hour.


“For those of you who are new…,” the instructor said, “Your butts will stop hurting after you come a few times.”

(That’s what she said)

I could not get comfortable right off the bat. Sit high? Ow. Sit forward? Ow. Stand up? TIRING! Spin class is not for little bitches. If you’re doing an activity that is supposed to be sitting down and you cannot, you’re gonna have a bad time.

To my credit (yeah right) I made it forty minutes. Then I was like, “Is this fun?” NO. Some exercise is not fun, and sometimes you’ll have a bad day no matter what. I’ve had terrible runs where I just give up. “This is now an adult walk. All runners please get out of the pool.” There are worse things than walking.

The most important question I asked myself was, “Will I feel a sense of accomplishment when the hour is up, and will I want to return to this?” NO. Deal breaker!

I did TRX yesterday, which is a cross between the circus and push ups. Uhhh…more fun than I just made that sound. It ticked my boxes for “fun” and “I will do this again.” I’m in a brief January series just to get started and the personal trainer is really nice. I found new muscles yesterday. Seriously, I wonder what these muscles are that are hurting??!!

One more thing–I’m also back in my old yoga series, this time with Pete. He went alone last month, and now we’re in together. When worlds collide! I always did so many things on my own for years because I had this weird anti-social territoriality somehow…like a dog that thinks its dinner is going to be taken away. Or a person who grew up compartmentalizing everything. Yoga was my city mistress and then I would come home and not talk about it. Sigh.

“How was yoga?”

“FINE.” *glares* *acts weird*

Pete came home and talked about yoga every day he went. He talks about things he does like a normal person, annoying me for years, which is completely unreasonable. I think I had this view of relationships that a person should strive to engage the other person and talk about only interesting or essential things, and be quiet otherwise, whereas he is very transparent and needs to brain dump and chatter. Two definitions of how a relationship works.

I spend a lot of time going “Mmmhmm” at home (but actually listening) because all the chatter flows my way. My children are finally reaching an age where they go, “Oh, how was your day?” It’s really nice. Sometimes I don’t have a lot to say, but sometimes a thing happened.

One time a few years ago I tried an experiment. “What if we don’t talk about work for a month? And see if we talk about other things?”

“Not at all?” he said, alarmed.

“Well, we should tell each other if we get fired or something.”

He ALMOST DIED. Of exploding. I felt bad and gave up, I think before the month was over. I was very happy, because tech world is boring, and we were pretty much in the same field. Now I feel much more patient about it, in part because I can follow and remember everything really well (no brain fog) and I feel helpful because I can remind him of past instances like “That sounds like when X did Y a few months ago” and he’s like “Ohhh yeah.” My head used to kind of swim like it always did when he’d tell me long stories about coding triumphs or a heinous meeting. It was hard to keep an oar in.

Point of all of this being, when my brain changed some I think I got more patient with what he needs from me, which is to be a repository of his day and be heard. That’s definitely something I can give.

I was raised to be seen and not heard, and preferably not seen, either. This is my chatter box. In 2001 I didn’t think anyone would read it, but I figured if someone told me to stop that babbling or to go to my room, it wouldn’t matter. And it hasn’t.

In Other News

1. Franny spent a week at her dad’s over New Year’s and has returned sick again, unfortunately. She is really messed up this time–super depressed, achy, congested, bloated. Her scalp was a flaky, itchy mess from shampoo that we’re allergic to. They use fabric softener and fragranced soaps there. I feel so bad for her. She seemed kind of okay at dinner and then burst into great sobbing tears and went to bed shortly after. She’s usually so chipper when she’s not glutened and corned. She’s having lung tightness like I do when I get corned and that coupled with a cold she picked up from her other sisters that is making her a little croupy (they are always ill), she is frustrated.

The night her dad dropped her off (Sunday) she was a little out of her mind and seemed drunk or stoned. She was rambling on and unable to finish her sentences or complete a thought, and was laughing at nothing, and running into walls.

“People were really nice for New Year’s and they brought me dishes I could eat.”

“That’s nice,” I said. “Do they keep wheat-free kitchens?”


“You seem glutened, honey,” I said.

“Yeah,” she said, and sighed.

I took over the dishes for her last night, but I had done so much exercise yesterday I could barely lift my arms, and then Pete tagged in.

I am trying to patch her up a little. I remind her to take magnesium, a bath, vitamins, eat some dark chocolate, vent. She knows what’s happening, and knows she doesn’t have an external event or situation depressing her, but it doesn’t make the depression less real. I had it about a month ago when I ate some bad nuts. I thought they were just coated with salt but in hindsight they were really too “dusty” looking. I crawled into bed and slept eleven hours. What was the point of getting up or dressed? I would never become an electrician. Would I even ever shower again? Eventually, I did.

She is lucky in that she’s going to a high school where if she needs to take a breather and step out in the halls and cry a little or just get some fresh air, she can. The penalty is that you miss part of your lesson, rather than getting slapped with detention. Her school is a “last chance” for some kids who have flunked out of regular public schools, or have had bullying problems, etc. She’s a good kid who does all her homework, but the flexibility there makes it the right place for her medical issues.

She spent years coming back from her dad’s house and being a teary wreck, and I thought a lot of it was the high amounts of sugar she would eat there. Now it’s even more extreme since she goes from being well to sick, instead of low-level sick/irritated to worse.

In summary, this is what the last four days have been like.

2. I liked this short story today from a long time internet acquaintance. Reminds me of when Franny was small. When Strudel was small, I was fielding questions about police justice and morality, how many ways there are to die, and what I thought she should study in college that would apply to becoming a supervillain. Now she’s just looking forward to swim lessons. WHEW. I come from dark genetics.

3. I have one more thing to say about yoga. I started yoga about ten years ago because I hurt myself in a kickboxing class, after an attempt to get really fit for the first time in my life. It turns out there was a reason I never did that before. I was just too fragile and prone to strains, joint pain, pulled muscles, and constant throbbing back pain. On Monday, for the first time ever in these past ten years, I did yoga without ANY pain. It was crazy. I kept expecting my wrists to go dead, my back to tweak, my hips to pop. Nothing. Before it was the lowest bar of what I could manage to do for exercise, and I felt like I had to “do something.” Now it’s fun and enjoyable. I GET IT. I GET YOGA NOW.

4 thoughts on “Spinning School Dropout

  1. Oh, man, I am a Pete and my victim is an SJ. Thank you for explaining the process, because I grew up in a VERY talkative family and have been confused by having to PRY information out of the BF.

    It hurts me to leave some things unsaid on an emotional level can’t quite understand. It’s like I can’t contain some things within just me. Beautiful things, cute things, very sad things. They’re too big for my inner space.

    The BF told me this tale once:
    His boss was complaining that his wife always falls asleep on roadtrips, leaving him bored. “Well, the nice thing about Irina is that if we have a seven hour drive,” says the boyfriend, “I know she’ll have seven hours of things to say.”

  2. I’m with TsDott on this, except I am an SJ and my partner is a total Pete, and I would feel awful for not engaging all the time, but the way you put it is so eloquent:

    “Point of all of this being, when my brain changed some I think I got more patient with what he needs from me, which is to be a repository of his day and be heard. That’s definitely something I can give.”

    So, uh, hey thanks for making this make total sense!

  3. I started reading your blog way before Rooby was a glimmer in the proverbial mind’s eye, and your running account of parenting has been one of the things that made it seem both desirable and possible for me. I remember in particular a short video you posted of Strudel dancing and eating peas from the garden? And I was like, oh man, I’d love one of those.

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