Tag Archives: inspiration

Me vs. Dancing

1 Mar

I am not much of a dancer. I love to dance, but it doesn’t love me very much. I took dancing lessons when I was a child, but I had happy blinders on back then and only felt the joy of it, not the embarrassment. I dance in the kitchen when I’m cooking. I dance in front of the kids who only laugh when I really exaggerate my skills. (Their laughs make me happy so I actually exaggerate a lot around them. Plus, I don’t want them to ever be afraid to break it down like their mom.) I can’t even dance with my husband. (One of the reasons I was so happy my wedding dress covered my feet.) I’ve tried to dance in a dance-exercise class, but the other adult students, the instructors and the mirrors all made me feel self-conscious. It was all on me though. No one was being mean to me to make me feel that way. I was not being kind to myself and I never really felt encouraged. Then, my friend, Leigh, invited me to go to a Zumba class with her at a local church. I had attended another Zumba class once before because everyone talked about how fun it was. I ended up feeling like I always do. Well, that was a downer.

I remember the way I felt before meeting Leigh for the class. I didn’t want to go. I told myself, go to see Leigh and burn some calories. It was going to help my health. I’m so glad I convinced myself.

This Zumba class is special because of its instructor. Her name is Debbie and she has a refreshing spirit and uplifting smile. When I’m there, my mind doesn’t tell me I’m not good at it. Sure, it helps that there aren’t any mirrors, but I believe it comes down to Debbie’s personality and the friendly faces I see there each time I go. Leigh is a huge fan of Debbie’s and told me I should write a post about her for the Barrow Patch because her story may inspire others. Interviewing her made me feel like a journalist again. It was wonderful. I did get nervous before writing the post because I’m so used to writing all about me, me, me, but once I sat down to do it, I felt great.

Dancing did that. Maybe it likes me more than I thought it did. And even if it doesn’t, I don’t care. It’s impossible for me to hip shake or do the Running Man move without smiling.

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Can I Get an Amen?

12 Mar

I’ve never been an ultra-religious person.  I believe in God.  I believe in Jesus. I had weekly religious education classes as part of the Catholic faith but I was young and didn’t pay much attention. (Did I ever mention that Andrew and I grew up in the same church?   I mean, how was I supposed to pay attention to anything when I knew I might see him?)  Also, I’ve missed more Sunday masses than I’ve attended and now even when I’m there I’m not really there. It’s not because I don’t want to be (I actually really want to be), it’s because I’m a mom and moms with kids in church just don’t get to pay much attention to what’s being prayed about or preached.  So wouldn’t it figure?  Now that I want to learn and want to be there, I really can’t.

It’s something that has really been weighing on me because right now I’m experiencing a true need to be taught about God and Jesus and benefit from the guidance and strength offered through the Bible.  But now I dread even going because Nate is a maniac in church and understandably so.  He’s two years old and we’re trying to make him whisper and not act like a caged animal for roughly an hour – even when we’re in the “cry room.”  (And yes, we’ve tried every trick in the book to help him through the hour.  Snacks, toys, crayons, blankey.  Nothing works.)  Trying to teach him how to act in church (or just to be quiet) while trying to walk away from mass with something inspiring or encouraging is nearly impossible. I end up leaving frustrated and disappointed that I didn’t get anything out it.

Amazingly, I’ve found something that is uplifting me but it’s not through our church.  I never thought I would say this and truly believe it but it seems God has lead me to what I needed.  Each Wednesday, I take Nia to a nondenominational Bible school for children at a local Baptist Church.  (One of her friends invited her to it.)  Because she is so young, I am supposed to stay on the church grounds while she’s in the 90 minute school.  At first, this was awful to me.  I thought, what am I going to do during that time?  I don’t think they have have free wireless internet.  I don’t really want to just sit in the hallway and lurk while I read or book or something.  That’s when the extremely friendly director of the Bible school guided me to a room with a sign that read “Ladies Bible Study.”

Just those words intimidated me.  What business did I have entering that room?  I’m only vaguely familiar with some of the “big” Bible stories and I was certainly not one of those ladies.  They are all in the same Baptist club right?  Will they all hiss at the Catholic and hold up the Bible if I cross the threshold?

Never could I have been more ignorant.  They were so wonderful and welcoming and at the end of that study I knew I was meant to walk in that room. It’s helping me in so many ways and I’m learning things about the Bible that I never knew before and I’ve also just realized, while writing this, that I shouldn’t rely on my Sunday morning church service alone to inspire me. Inspiration and guidance is all around me everyday.  In my family, in the Bible, in my friends, in good deeds…

From now on, I will walk into church with a light heart knowing that my healthy, happy little boy is going to want to play and I am more than likely not going to hear a word of what is being said. As long as we are not bothering anyone else, I will do better to not let it bother me.  I will use the time there to thank God for His ways and show my faith to Him with my family. Maybe I’ll even get a prayer or two in as well. (For Nate to be quieter could be one of them!)

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