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It Happened To Me: I Was Just Trying To Do Some Yoga

You may have heard about my story yesterday at XoJane where this white lady wrote about how I had a difficult time with yoga because I’m “fairly heavy” and black, which are things that would understandably contribute to my ignorance of yoga and lack of enthusiasm toward it, right? Apparently, I just gave up on even trying and left the class early because of my blackness and weight, and “Jen Caron”‘s superior flat, skinny white woman body.

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Gawker wrote a summary of the article that made me laugh because it pointed out how stupid and self-absorbed this woman was. XoJane changed her name to Jen Caron from Jen Polachek (her real name). Why? It’s not like she wrote a Nazi-themed screed calling for the cleansing of the races in America.

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She’s just a self-absorbed, insensitive, and benevolently racist woman who hopefully is learning some things from the backlash against her asinine article.

Here was my day:

1. I woke up with back pain from sleeping wrong due to my toddler claiming the middle of the bed and lodging his foot in my back while laying on my husband’s chest sideways.

2. I spilled coffee on my blouse running out of the door for work, and was late to work due to changing clothes and dropping off my son at daycare.

3. My boss chewed me out about being 4 minutes late and said that I did not have valid excuses.

4. While working with a team and being burdened with the bulk of the work because they’re lazy morons, I got a call from the hospital that my father was admitted for chest pains and they don’t know what’s wrong with him.

5. I caught a glimpse of my hair in the bathroom mirror on my way out from work and still don’t like this permed-to-natural struggle I’m going through, which didn’t add to the crap-tastic day I was having.

6. I left work earlier than normal (on a day I was “late”), picked up my son from daycare, ran by the hospital and saw my dad (who just had anxiety, but they’re keeping him overnight for observation), went home, and changed clothes for my evening workout.

7. My husband, fortunately, came home and pushed me into going to yoga after I told him about my day. He said it would be relaxing and I was doing well with it and it would probably helping me in my weight-loss goals. I have New Year’s resolutions that I’m a bit late starting, and yoga is one of them. He started making dinner and played with our son. I left, looking forward to some “me time,” which I sorely needed.

8. I started my session at this new place I was checking out. This was my fourth time there. I normally do a later session or weekend classes.

9. While coming out of corpse pose, my mind would just not settle down. Everything I’d been through all day just started to rumble. My day started terribly, work sucks, my father worried me for (hopefully) no reason, these ibuprofen are wearing off and my back pain is slowly returning, I’ll have to fight tonight with my toddler to get him to sleep in his room, and, okay, WHY IS THIS WOMAN STARING AT ME?!

10. I need to calm down. She’s probably just looking because I’m behind her. No, wait. No. No, she’s studying me. She’s staring me down! Let me crouch down and pull it together because she’s about to get cussed out and I’d be taking out my day on her.

11. WTF?! She’s still staring! Focus your eyes elsewhere! What is her problem?! I can’t take it! This isn’t relaxing and I’m about to cuss out some nosey white woman who is making me break out in stalker hives. And now I’m crying. Let me go before I catch a case and won’t be allowed back up in here. Jesus, hold my peace. I’m out.

So, that’s what happened from my end. I think it helps to have both sides of the story and some back story of my day to understand why I walked out of that yoga class. It wasn’t due to some skinny, flat-butt, white woman who became so concerned about race relations in yoga enough to write a piece about how her internalized racism was too much for her, so she needed to cry and tell her story to others in the hopes that yoga would be more inclusive of black people, who are already doing yoga in front of others who aren’t casual benevolent racists. I was trying to have some black girl time, yet here there Jen was, staring me down. (Is it from jealousy because she feels black women’s eyes bore into her because she has a black man at home?) Shut up when it’s black girl time!

I have curves, breasts, and a brain, yet I’m jealous of a piece of flexible cardboard? Girl, bye. I’m better than you’ll ever be.

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