Grow Into It
For Dacey. Thanks to Ang for beta.
You like going to yoga classes because it's one of the few places you can be sure you won't be recognized, and even if you are, you won't be fawned over. Some of the earnest, tunic-clad women there may eye you with appreciation - you know your body does justice to the poses - but most of them will turn a blind eye to you once the class becomes intense, and every person has to focus on their own breathing.
One woman approaches you after a class, and you are relieved when she tells you she's not going to ask for an autograph for herself, but disappointed when she asks for one for her niece. She may not be a star-worshipper herself, but she still sees you as a way to give a gift to someone else. Whether it's for herself or another, she is still going to use you. And you find you don't want to go to yoga classes anymore.
You spend some of your considerable income, and enlist the services of a private yoga instructor. He comes to your house six mornings a week when you're home, and travels to your hotel as often as can be arranged while you're on the road. You admire his amazing physique and appreciate his authoritarian approach, which gets as close to drill sergeant as you've ever seen any hippy yoga type. He demands dedication from you, and you are happy to give it - as happy as you ever were to give it to Wade, to Darren, to JC, to the countless vocal coaches and producers who have asked for the best from you over the years. You like giving your all, and don't respect anyone who doesn't expect it of you.
You realize you're starting to know yourself a little better, to feel a little more grown-up, when you can begin demanding your all of yourself. You find that you don't need a coach or a drill sergeant barking in your ear to draw the best out of you. You learn to reach down into the place inside you where your ambition and your skill live and bring them all to the surface on your own. "So this is what being grown up feels like," you think, and then you laugh. You know you're just turning twenty-one, and although you know more of life than most twenty-one-year-olds can imagine, you know you don't know anything, really. Some deep corner of your mind whispers that this is the beginning of wisdom, but the rest of your mind pushes the thought away. You laugh at yourself again, and go back inside to join your friends at your twenty-first birthday party.
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