Wednesday, September 18, 2013

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Surrendering to ignorance

Water Aerobics is one of the things that has been filling my time as of late, especially since my kids are all grown up and in college.  Gotta get the ole body in shape if I plan to keep on keeping on.

Today's class caused an interesting observation. We had a substitute teacher who claims that she has taught water aerobics before.  However, she was up on the platform, doing a zumba routine, and pretty much giving no instruction.  Meanwhile, all of us down in the water were pretty much flopping around like dying fish. You see, movement under water is very different than movement on dry land. Water makes you weightless, taking the stress of exercise off your legs, feet, and knees, which is why many people, both large and/or elderly don't exercise... because our feet swell up and our knees ache.  So here we are, doing our darndest to keep up, but she's bouncing on dry land, two of these moves, a wiggle, two of those moves, and jump, and eventually many of us began to just stand still, bewildered, or starting doing our own routines learned from previous instructors.

Other people started complaining loudly and a murmur began to rise in the pool. I decided that if anyone was going to get benefit from the session, and if I wanted to prevent people from hurling water weights at her head, that I had to say something.  So I bounced across the pool and attempted to get her attention... and she ignored me.  Finally, I spoke us and said excuse me... I am sorry, but I have to interrupt.  She stopped the music and listened.  I apologetically explained that the water was deep, and we had a completely different gravity and reaction time that she did.  She needed to slow down and do more repetitions, because once we picked up one move, she had moved on to something else.

Some people started applauding, and I gave them the cut it out sign, waving my flattened hand under my chin, and making a face that said... let it go.  And she did adjust the routine a little, but by then, we had all figure out how to alter her moves to me more effective, and less dangerous in water.

Toward the end of the session, people started mumbling that they were going to give her a piece of their mind. I tried to cut them off at the pass and give her a little gentle advice.  I said, "Perhaps you should try your routine in the water sometime and I bet you will instantly know what adjustments to make".  She snapped, "I've done it in the water".   So I put my hands up in a 'surrender' pose and backed away.  I let the crowd descend.

And my observation is that there are going to be some people who think they know everything, but really, they just have untested ideas. They have no desire to learn or alter their thinking, even through trial and error and so they are going to have to get slammed in life in order to change their ways... if they change their ways at all.

I instantly applied that to the struggles I am having with my doctor (I will write about the case of the missing ovaries later)... with some relatives, and with my kids.  Sometimes, you have to step away and let people think what they are going to think, and do what they are going to do.  You can give advice, but they don't have to take it.  Sometimes our only remaining action is to throw up our hands and walk away.


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