Gonna Snap My Neck Like a Toothpick

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  • By Susan "The Wife" Bartley
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Gonna Snap My Neck Like a Toothpick

Ugh….it’s already February 13th and I haven’t written one blog post for 2020.   I have all the excuses in the world but the one that is probably most of the truth is that I just haven’t made time to sit down and do it.  We have had plenty to write about, I just haven’t written about it.


Today is the day. I will write and publish this blog if it kills me.


I want to talk about creating an UNSAFE space.   That is not typically what we hear about.  These days everyone wants to be safe.   Not gonna lie, I have an affinity for spaces that are safe where I can control my surroundings, and everything is copacetic.  But recently, you know since the great Prosecco incident of 2019, I have been forcing myself into spaces where I am not so safe.  Well, maybe I am safe – like nothing is going to hurt me – but where I have to face things that make me uncomfortable.


I have written about taking Pole Dancing classes.  I started that in the late summer, but recently I have been working a little harder at it and practicing.  I can not do the traditional super spinney moves that the professionals do…partly because I am not a professional, but mostly because spinning in a circle makes me want to puke.  I’m not sure if you have ever watched anyone perform a routine on the pole. In case you haven’t this is what they look like:



I can’t do that.  Puking in the corner is NOT sexy and all that spinning would make me puke.


To add a layer of bad ass-ery to my pole skills without adding spins my lovely teacher has introduced headstands and handstands.  Apparently, there are a lot of cool moves you can do out of a headstand/handstand and she thinks that these moves will replace the complex spinning moves and still make me look like a badass.  That’s her theory at least.


There is just one tiny issue.


Headstands TERRIFY me.  I mean heart racing, face flushing, tummy roiling, scare the pants off me.  I have this pathological fear that I will break my neck and that will be my tragic end.


The first time my teacher tried to put me in a headstand it went something like this.  A nice mat was placed at the base of the pole. I grabbed the pole with my hands and gently lowered my head onto my arms.  And that was it.  It was all I could do.  The next time I was able to lift my butt into the air and that was all I could do.  My teacher announced that we would do at least one handstand in every class so I could get used to it.  I found however, if I didn’t mention it she didn’t bring it up so I skated headstand free.  That didn’t last long.   She brought it up again and I set a date to be able to do a headstand by the year 2027. 


One thing that I have always had going for me in powerlifting was the fact that I didn’t quit.  It may take me 10 attempts to get a lift but long after my partners had moved on, if I knew I could get the weight, I would stay there.  Long past the point of diminishing returns and often I would indeed be able to execute at least one, usually ugly rep with whatever weight I needed.


It all stemmed from the time an old workout partner looked at a weight Marc wanted me to do and she actually said, “You know you aren’t going to get that, you aren’t strong enough”.  Game on!


So, headstands.  I didn’t want to do them.  They scared me.  BUT I also don’t like to let something beat me.  I did one in class and it went okay.  My neck didn’t snap like a toothpick and I had the confidence I needed. 


Here is that headstand:



Several friends offered advice and one even brought me a cool tool that she used when she was learning and folks, I was off to the races.


Check me out now:



Doing things that are scary, and uncomfortable exhaust me.  They make my brain hurt.  But each time I succeed at something that just days earlier scared the crap out of me I get stronger.  This is true in business and in my personal life.  One of the reasons Spud, Inc. has grown is because Marc and I are always looking for the next step and tackling the next big challenge.  “Google that shit” is my most uttered phrase….don’t know how to do it then just “google that shit”.


I have a friend who is from a very small town in South Carolina.  Her life experiences have been limited.  One thing that she is especially scared of is trying different food.  And when I mean different, I mean Italian, Greek, Chinese and any other “ethnic” food that is widely available in the US.  I joke with her all the time about it.  Recently, she went on a date.  She was telling me about it and how the guy was really nice and so I asked if she was going to see him again and she said this: “I don’t think so.  We ate at Buffalo Wild Wings and we each had wings and French fries.  That’s all he likes to eat and if I date a guy who only eats what I eat then how will I ever learn to eat anything different”.


Nail on the head.


If you don’t ever do the scary thing then how will you ever grow?   Whats your scary thing for 2020?


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