Last week I had been on vacation, but now that I’m back I have been diligently working to find a place to train jujitsu. Turns out there is nothing super close to me. I actually considered going to Karate classes instead, but I couldn’t do it. It’s not that I wouldn’t love to learn Karate – I would – but I need something familiar in my life.
I found my first place to try and I was absolutely terrified. I didn’t expect to be. I have social anxiety disorder, but I thought I somehow didn’t have it anymore. I realize now that I just haven’t had to be in an unfamiliar group of people in years. Funny how that works. So my body reminded me what it means to have anxiety, and my brain reminded me to be sure to write down what I would say on the phone before I called. And then my brain reminded me that my voice sounded awfully shaky and nervous in the message, so I decided to avoid meeting that teacher any time soon. He didn’t call back, so I ended up going to a class where the teacher wouldn’t expect anyone new. Luckily, when I walked in, there was this guy looking super confused so I knew he was new too and the instructor wasn’t 100% focused on me.
I thought the hard part was over, and then this guy says there is a changing room. So I am freaking out like what do I do? Am I required to change in there or is it just in case I want to change in there? Should I want to change in there? I wore my spats under my sweatpants because of this exact situation, but I couldn’t help but think that even with the spats on I should still be in the changing room. At the same time, there was only one changing room and there was a line, and class was about to start.
I was too busy worrying about my ever so slight lateness in being ready to notice that the class didn’t bow in. I bowed to the mat in a sort of half-assed way, like I want to bow to the mats but I’m not sure if you guys do that here… turns out they don’t.
As an aside, I really like the process of bowing in and out of class. It helps me separate my personal life from my training. It reminds me to be fully present and focused. As someone with ADHD, I need every reminder I can get to stay focused.
Anyways, there was one other female person in this class, so naturally she immediately decided we were partners. I certainly didn’t mind, as the entire class seemed to be busy pretending that new people did not exist. It was strange though. We never switched partners so I really only met this one person. In a way, thats a good thing, but it also has me anxious to go back, because if I meet only one person each class, how will I ever become comfortable in the community as a whole?
I’ll go back tomorrow for a no gi class. It’ll actually be my first no gi class, so Im a bit excited. Im also nervous to meet new people again. And nervous because another school I contacted is telling me nothing about prices until I go there. That makes me not want to go there.