Because bad shit happens in threes, I guess, my mom’s in the hospital and I’m doing some thinking.

Christmas
Christmas

Luckily, she’s going to be totally okay. But, I have some pole related thoughts on this.

So, my momma got extremely sick from a totally common thing: kidney stones. BLAH BLAH BLAH, they caused a blockage, and something minor turned into a full on kidney infection that came pretty close to killing her. It was deeply, deeply scary, and it’s been wonderful to see color come back to her cheeks and hear her cracking jokes about “taking the stairs” in a gurney (kathunk, kathunk kathunk. come on, it’s sick, but it’s a little funny).

The thing is… my mom has been feeling weird for months. I feel guilty now having seen some changes in her and knowing I didn’t yell at her to go to the doctor (cancelling her gym membership because she was always tired was VERY not like her). But, because my mom’s the type of person that likes to brag about having only been to the hospital three times (child one, child two, child three), she ignored symptoms like fatigue and a low-grade fever until she woke up Saturday morning in excruciating pain and almost too sick to make it to the car.

That is… scary. Being in a hospital is scary. It’s full of lots of sick people that were totally healthy people at one point. We forget that, in the real world (I’ve spent the last two days in a hospital from 8am to 8pm and it definitely feels like a different realm). Serious things can happen to our bodies, and there’s no guarantee they’ll be the same afterwords. That’s real.

As women especially (and in a world Post Instagram (PI)), we get so caught up in aethetics, like whether our abs are flat (or our Jade Splits are) that we forget about the parts we can’t see: our kidneys, livers,  nerves, arteries, gallbladders, WHATEVER. Setting those things aside, it should be easy to care for all the muscles and ligaments and joints that help us do what we do, that we can actually see and feel.

That’s why, scrolling through my blogroll as my mom was snoozing, I got downright ANGRY reading Nina’s post about injuries, and how pole dancers wear them as a badge of honor–or perpetuate that idea that they are a totally normal part of dancing. (I mean, like, righteously angry. I AGREE WITH YOU SO HARD NINA, ARRRRRGH).

Excuse me but NO THANK YOU PLEASE TAKE IT AWAY to injuries. Yes, I too have pulled a shoulder practicing on cold muscles my first few months in (learned that lesson). But ignoring pain so I could learn a move, then realizing I did damage? Yeah, nope. You guys: we only get one set of these parts.

Take a second and consider that.

One set. You break it, you bought it. Two wrists,  two shoulders, one abdominal wall. Like, do not fuck this shit up, okay?

I fully admit that I am 100% that person in class that wants to see something a few times and understand how it works (where the weight will be carried, touch points, what I should expect to hurt) before climbing up and trying it. Like, to the point where one of the teachers at ECP has called me The Physicist (<3 you Antoine).

Yeah, it’s embarrassing, but, I kinda DGAF–I need to feel like I understand what I’m going to do and how it should feel before I try it 6 feet off the ground. And if it feels wrong (aside from the to-be-expected-level-of-ow-ow-ow, like skin burning), I bail. I’ll try again with some support, and if it still feels wrong, bail again, or try to learn a modification until it feels better.

I get that not everybody is like this–some people are daredevil, LETMETRYIT, “stop explaining, let’s just do this” type-people. And they’ll likely get some amazing tricks way before I do.

But I’d rather feel safe, secure, and for lack of a better word, right. I don’t like moves to feel like a crap-shoot. I don’t want getting down safely to be about luck. I don’t want to fuck up the one set of body parts I have.

That’s me.

Anyway, in honor of my mom, please dear god drink tons of water, forever, and don’t hesitate to check something out with a doctor when you feel weird.

So preachy, I know, sorry. I JUST WANT EVERYONE TO BE HEALTHY, OKAY.

…and now I’m going to be unbearable and make you look at pictures of my mom.

3 Comments

  1. Oh wow. I am so sorry. That sounds awful. And I agree 100% about injuries. Part of becoming an athlete is recognizing when to pull back instead of continuing to push. Another part of being an athlete is developing a strong cross training plan so that you are resistant to injuries. 9 times out of 10 an injury means you were sloppy. And I’m speaking as someone who has injured myself being sloppy. Thanks for sharing.

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