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Kansas City MO 64131





Cindy Maddera

The other day I met with a woman about the possibility of teaching in her new studio. I didn't really know what I expected out of the meeting but once I got to the studio and sat down to talk with her, I felt horribly unprepared. She asked me questions about my teaching style and about my past teaching experiences. I explained that I used to teach a lot of classes for someone with a full time job. I told her that I had moved to KCMO about six years ago for a new job and that I decided then to take some time off from teaching while I got used to a new city, new job and a new life. Then she asked me to teach her a twenty minute yoga class, twenty minutes of a class I had not prepared to teach. No plan. Free style teaching. I taught the best impromptu twenty minute yoga class I could teach after almost five years of not teaching. 

Let's face it. It was a rusty class. I went with a basic class I would teach to a not so experienced yoga student with a few simple rounds of sun salutation, followed with a warrior series of poses, some seated postures, a twist and some alternate nostril breathing. When I was done, the woman sort of nodded her head and said "okay...ummm...I need to think about a few things and then I'll let you know." I knew that I had just failed this audition. She did say that she really liked my teaching style and that I sounded very knowledgeable. Her body language said that she found me boring and not to her taste. I rolled up my mat and headed towards the door. The yoga teacher for the class that was about to start had just showed up and so the studio owner introduced us. That teacher said that she really liked my ear piercing. I told her 'thank you' and then I started rambling on about how it was new and I had been totally unprepared for the sound it would make when the needle went into my ear. These words were falling out of my mouth even while I watched the woman's face twist into a look of horror. I just couldn't stop myself. Then I looked her in the eye and said "I have no idea why I am sharing this information with you."

I slapped my palm against my forehead as I walked back out to my scooter. What the fuck was I thinking?!?! I couldn't for the life of me figure out what had just happened back there in that studio other than I for sure know that I am never going to hear back from that studio owner. I reran the interview/audition over in my brain while I scooted home. I had said nothing about moving here with Chris. I didn't breathe a word about him and the illness that led to his death. I left out the whole part about me being a widow.

I did that on purpose for a number of reasons. I hate that look of awkward pity that comes across a person's face when you tell them you are a widow. It is human nature to spout some sort of condolence, which always comes across as forced. Death throws people off leaving them at a loss of what to say in response to it. I am not one to play the widow card to garnish pity and favor. In fact, favors from that kind of pity feels like the worst kind to me. Another reason for avoiding the subject is that I don't want to give off the impression that Chris is the reason I stopped teaching. Actually, now that I really think about it, he'd probably be really disappointed in me for not teaching. 

So, instead of mentioning a late husband, I decided to talk about the sound a needle makes as it pierces through the cartilage in your ear. I'm not sure why I couldn't have stuck with something as basic as "I carried a watermelon." I had to just dive straight on in to grotesque.