Cirque de Soleil has always wowed me. The multi-talents and incredible strength of the performers is a wonder. The closest I have ever come to being in a circus was at 10. The other day though, I had a true feeling of the courage and freedom it takes to be under the big tent. A friend turned 40 and we all went to Circus School with trapeze as our class. For me this was an amazing and invigorating experience. Although I am adventurous, heights are not my favorite challenge. The teacher reminded us, “you don’t have to be flexible, strong or even a gymnast, you just have to LISTEN, empty your mind and LISTEN.” Immediately, I was excited, I can do that, this is so ZEN. After climbing the narrow, metal tall ladder and reaching a tiny platform 25 feet up, I felt my heart race. My brain kept saying, relax, but I was so scared. Belted into the harness, then clicked into the safety lines, knowing the net was below, I felt supported yet hesitant. Then I leaned forward to grab the trapeze with my right hand. Now sweaty and a bit shaky, my left hand was holding on and the only thing keeping me from mid air. A voice yelled, “READY,” then, “HEP,“ I paused when I was supposed to jump. Again I hear, “READY,” knees bend chest and hips forward, “HEP.” Feet off the pedestal, hands holding tight, arms straight, high in the air, I am FLYING, OMG. Wow, I am gliding in the air. Then I hear a command, “legs over the bar,” lifting my legs I hear my breath, knees hook. Next, “hands off the bar and reach,” my hands release the bar and reach straight over my head, the momentum continues until I catch his eye and he grabs my arms. More smooth swinging until he lets me go. Down I land, enveloped in the net, ahhh. I sighed, then a huge rush, an inner and outer smile and a content moment. That was a fabulous exercise and a real challenge. The movement felt like fearlessness.The following day every part of my body was sore, lifting my arms over my head took lots of effort. The flying was a jolt and a process of awakening that reminded me how important it is to live and stay curious all through life.
AUTHOR: Bex Urban