A Ridiculous Tale of Incoordination + Discoloration, Told in Three Parts. Act II: Throwing Your Weight Around.

December 4, 2012

Are you ready for Act II of this story? Of course you are. You’ve been waiting for a week. Well, let’s go then.

But first, let’s recap: You may remember that I broke my tailbone from walking, then I got a black eye from sleeping, then I decided to climb up a very tall ladder. It’s all here. Caught up? Okay! Let’s do this.


So I was all signed up to take a flying trapeze class. Me and my friend Liz and her friend Joy. We were going to rock it. And for whatever reason, perhaps ignorance being bliss and all, I wasn’t scared, wasn’t nervous, and was completely sure of myself. Etc.

That was all true until I put this out on Facebook. For some reason I thought it would be a good idea to tell the world this was about to happen…and my mother, God bless her, left a clever comment to be careful because Harrison women don’t have arms strong enough to support our bodies or something. And she’s completely right. And it completely freaked me out. Because what the hell did I think I was doing? Why would I ever think I had the physical capability to hoist myself up onto a 30-pound skinny bar, while flying 50 feet off the ground? Could my body even do that? Could that even be possible? If you’re a thinker, you know that if you’re asking yourself these questions, then the answer is no.

Because almost everything about everything is all in your head. And if you’re wondering if you can’t, you probably can’t.

I’m not even an athlete and I know this. So I began the process of reverse psyching myself out by screaming in my own brain “YOU CAN TOTALLY DO THIS!” But honestly, I didn’t believe myself.

We went on the practice bar to practice tucking in our knees before we went up. Here’s what we were going to attempt to do. This is my friend Liz. She is going to demonstrate for you.

Liz stood on a really high platform.

Then she jumped off.

Then she tucked her knees up on the bar.

While she was swinging in the air.

Then she swung by her knees.

Then she was caught by another flying guy.

But we weren’t event at this point yet.

We were on the ground, on a little bar that was about 8 feet off the ground, and we were attempting to do the first practice tuck-your-knees-up-onto-the-bar-and-hang-from-it move. That’s all that we were doing.

And I completely couldn’t do it. I couldn’t’ tuck my knees in tight enough to get it done. The instructor guy was all, “you’re right there, you’re basically doing it, just do it!”

But my friends, basically doing something, and completely doing something are two very different things. This I know.

However, they continued to assure me that I could do it, that it was way easier to tuck and hang from three stories up because of the centrifugal force or the barometric pressure or something…and I completely believed them enough to start climbing the ladder.

Then I stood up on the platform.

And got ready to jump.

And then I jumped.

And I attempted to put my legs up on the bar. But then I stopped doing that.

And I just kept swinging.

Then I did a back flip off the bar.

And I landed in the net.


Sort of.

The instructor guy was all, ‘Dude, you were totally there. You were in motion, you were on your way, you were doing it, and then you just, uh, stopped. You stopped. It’s that simple. You can do this. Just don’t stop.”  Wiser words have never been ignored.

I tried this three more times, and I completely did not do the tuck and knee hang. I believed I couldn’t do it, and I was right.

I was conflicted. On one hand, I was happy that I attempted it, but also bummed that my brain was superseding my body. I swore I would do whatever it took to help my brain believe my body could do it. I would commit to a yoga routine, I would eat more salad, I would figure out what else my brain needed to have faith in my body. Because before this all started, I didn’t care about this, I didn’t know I wanted it. But now I had to do it. I needed to do it. I just had to figure out how. I wasn’t going to talk about it, I wasn’t going to tell anyone, and I was just going to privately figure out a way to make this happen. Oh this story was not over!

But then again, and on the other hand, this story could totally be over. It was fine. Enough. It wasn’t a total failure. I climbed up (four times), I jumped off the platform (four times), I flew through the air (four times), I attempted a trick (four times) and I back flipped off on the net (four times). It could have been worse. I could have fallen and missed the net….

Which brings me to the next part of the story.

The next week, I was talking to Jenny on the phone. I hadn’t shared with her my failed attempt or anything…we were just talking as we do about who knows what, knitting or some other inane item, when she said, “You know what I’ve always wanted to do… trapeze lessons.”

So I signed us both up for a class right then.

Tune in next week for Act III. It’s the best part.

Remember, I’m taking the Jingos! Live Bold Challenge from Pepperidge Farm to do something daring. Bold. Extreme! If I do it (and by it, I mean a flying trapeze knee hang!) at the end, I’m/they’re going to give you the opportunity to win an experience Cloud 9 Living experience valued at $150.00. I’m going to do it. I’m accepting their challenge. Come back on Thursday for event more adventure (and the contest and stuff).

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  • Reply Liz December 4, 2012 at 2:30 pm

    I CAN’T WAIT to hear part three. I’m so proud of you for going back!

  • Reply Leslie December 5, 2012 at 10:12 am

    I totally get that!! We went to Costa Rica and I was so psyched that the resort offered free surf lessons, until I remembered that I am not athletic AT ALL and that I don’t know how to surf. And no matter how hard that poor instructor tried, I could not get my body to do what it was supposed to over my brain screaming back and forth “I can’t! I CAN! I can’t! I CAN!” I eventually (after over 20 tries) got up on the board and surfed in ONCE. So I can’t wait to hear your part III!

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