Never in my life have I been in a physical fight- until yesterday. I can’t even begin to explain the adrenaline that was rushing through my body as I held my fist up high threw a punch with my right hand, brought my left in for a solid hook and them bam! Punched again with my right fist for what felt like a lethal blow. I was angry, excited, energized and in a fight or flight state all at the same time. I’d actually never felt anything like this in my life…I was kickboxing and it was crazy fun!
If you’ve been following this Power of Play blog series, you know that I’m serious about play. Just because you’re all grown up doesn’t mean you can’t have fun. Each week and more often, every day, I’m making time for play. What I’m finding is that the more playing I do, the easier it comes and the more ideas I have. When I first began this series, I had to look for things to do that were fun and put in real effort. Now it’s become a way of life.
Just yesterday I played tag three times, hula hooped (and learned how to throw it so that it comes right back to me, how cool is that) and played catch- all in one day. In my quest to play I’ve found that it doesn’t take any extra time- what it takes is the desire to want to play and have real fun. Here’s how simple it is- Yesterday we went to get ice cream and while Noah and I waited for Paris to finish hers I looked at him and said, “Want to play tag?” You should have seen the look in his eyes! He said, “Yes!” and took off running. We were both laughing so hard that I forgot that I was a grown woman hanging out at an ice cream store playing tag (how embarrassing- as I was playing full out)!
When we got home, the kids jumped out of the car and Paris grabbed her hula hoop. “Have one for me?” I said- She excitedly threw me a hoop and although I was horrible (it’s been 20 years!), we laughed a lot. Keep in mind that we didn’t spend an hour hula hopping…it was more like ten minutes, but for that ten minutes, I was a girl…Traci Shafer…the one from the past who loved to play Barbie’s, board games and follow the leader.
Before I began this process to get my girl back, I would have never thought to play. I was the mom who “watched” her kids play. Getting in the game has transformed my life in so many ways. Most importantly I’m having fun, laughing and experiencing joy in the most simple of things. I am feeling less grown up and more childlike…I can’t tell you how good this feels because in truth- it’s been far too long. With a national company and a third book in the midst of the publishing process my life can be pretty crazy. Playing has changed my perspective entirely- things that once freaked me out don’t bother me. I’m less serious, more spontaneous and fully engaged in living in the moment. My entire perspective is different and it’s empowering.
That leads me to my fight yesterday. Because I’m tired of “going to the gym,” I’ve been experimenting with all different kinds of exercises that fall into the category of fun and I’m having a blast! This week I did Pilates on Monday, Kickboxing on Tuesday and today I went for a walk on the beach with my mom. I feel as if I have awakened from a long sleep- the sun is brighter, the water bluer, and the breeze softer on my skin.
I dare you- to join me in the quest for play, adventure and fun! Life is so serious all the time- there is always going to be something to do; someplace to go and something to clean…give yourself a break. Your partner will find you more fun, your kids will be in a state of shock and utter happiness and you- you will feel alive.
Each week, as part of my Power of Play blog series, I will share what I’m doing . . . to fuel ideas for you! I encourage you to get in the game and read my recent blogs for ideas. If you’d like to join in on the fun and get my blog post by email, sign up at http://bit.ly/1j2ol3s. You can also share your own stories and ideas here on my blog or on my Facebook Fan page at Get Your Girl Back movement. I can’t wait to hear from you. .
Written by Traci Bild, Founder of the Get Your Girl Back movement & expert on Women’s Issues