working it out

So appropriate that Mother’s Day is this week. As mentioned in the last post, I’ve been having a bit of a rough go of things. And this bit has kind of lasted a little longer than a bit. And I was starting to worry. Which obviously wasn’t going to help. You never solve a problem through worrying. So, life kept going. I tried not to worry. I let myself cry. I knew it would eventually get better. I started running in the mornings with the lovely and talented Jenna. I tried to get more sleep. I tried not to eat my way into feeling better. All of this helped, but then tonight, I feel as if a switch was flipped…

Once upon a time I was a little girl with a very active mother. She had always been pretty athletic and she decided to pass that along to us; swimming, softball, tennis, soccer, basketball…the list goes on. During my MBA program, I thought about taking a soccer class to refresh the skills, but I was a little intimidated as one can only be by zoobie undergrads and their overachieving, still youthful ways. So I didn’t. I wanted to play on an intramural team, but also didn’t because I wasn’t sure if I’d be good anymore. And we all know I’m just a wee bit competitive. 

A couple of months ago, when I was in a better place (mentally). I found this coed adult recreational soccer league. I was too intimidated to try and join a team, but I put myself on the mailing list for the next time they held classes because I was feeling adventurous and pretty fearless. And then last week, in the depths of my despair (don’t I sound dramatic), I get a little email from NY Coed Soccer informing me that new classes would be starting this week. While the actual thought of taking the class with a bunch of strangers scared the crap out of me, there was this little voice inside me that told me to just do it. This would be exactly what I needed.

There were two classes offered. One was very basic: passing and receiving. The other was more advanced: aggressive ball handling or something. My uber competitive self would not allow me to sign up for both for fear I’d suck it up the first hour and then not want to be there for the second, so I didn’t. 
Yeah…not so brand loyal, am I?
Tonight was the first class. To say I was a little nervous would be a bit of an understatement. But, I’ve done scary things often enough to know that after the first few minutes, life goes on, I start breathing normally again, and no one will have actually tried to make me feel like an idiot. And tonight was no exception. In fact, about 10 minutes in I was already wishing I’d signed up for the second class. It was so fun! And I met some new people. And I had more soccer experience than anyone which meant I didn’t feel like a total loser. And I didn’t worry about how good anyone else was or when I messed up because we really were all there to learn. 
On the way home from Brooklyn (yes, I haul my arse all the way to Brooklyn for this class), as I was cooling off from our little passing game, I realized that not once during that hour had I worried about my “problems” or felt even an inkling of depression. I was so focused on the technique and the drills and the game that there was no room in my brain for anything else. And I had all those endorphins pumping through me…which I’m sure didn’t hurt.
While, during these down moments, there is really nothing I would like more than to have my mom around to tell me everything is going to be all right, “it always works out,” it sure was nice to at least have her influence pushing me to do the things that she knew would make for a happy child. I’m still her kid, after all.
P.S. If anyone in NYC is interested in joining me on a coed team this summer, I’d love to have at least one person join me. Just let me know!

7 thoughts on “working it out

  1. How inspiring!! I have been wanting to try the EXACT same thing — you are so brave to join! Keep updating on how it's going and I'm sure I will follow suit!!

  2. I think this is awesome! While running is awesome, sometimes it allows us to think too much and get too into our head. Playing is just that… playing!

  3. Hooray! I admire your bravery and your willingness to go to Brooklyn 🙂 You know – that's partly why I love Improv classes – when I'm there, all my problems are crowded out and I have to stop worrying and just be in the moment.

  4. Okay, after reading this post I got super inspired and was like, "Okay, whatever Rachel, get over it and sign up for the class if you still can. You'll feel a LOT more comfortable joining a league if you polish up your skills, and besides, it'll be fun." I went to the link and was informed the class is full. Boo freakin hoo. But I really am interested in joining a league so please keep me posted when that happens.I love you and I love your posts.

  5. i, for one, think you are ridiculously brave…and cool. i would never join a team like that but i would really, really want to! thanks for posting this…i really need to get out of my comfort zone every once in awhile and it's good to remember that just before we move cross country (speaking of which, i'll be 3 hours from nyc and plan to visit at least a few times! love to do dinner or something.).

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