It’s Monday morning at 5:32 am. I am surrounded by about 40 other women. Some I know through work, some I know through town, and some I have gotten to know through Burn Boot Camp.
“Keep those feet moving!” Alyssa gently yells as she begins to explain the Partner Posterior Strength Workout we are about to grunt through. Workouts at Burn Boot Camp consist of a variety of oddly titled exercises that make you question your decision to even show up.
All eyes are on Alyssa as she explains the exercises that make up station 1 – Single Leg Glute Bridge and BB Split Squat.
I am standing near Rebecca listening and looking. Rebecca is someone I have known OF for years but have gotten to know as a result of attending the 5:30 am camp morning after morning, week after week, month after month.
“Don’t be afraid of this one, don’t be afraid of the Single Leg Glute Bridge. Put one leg up on the Burn Bar, balance and lower into a squat with the standing leg. Do that for a minute while your partner is on the floor with the Single Leg Glute Bridge.” Alyssa explains as she demonstrates.
She moves from station to station. As she moves expeditiously to station 3, she shares “Here we have the Plyo Box Glute Raise-Hold.” At that, Rebecca turns to me, our eyes meet, we shake our heads “You should write another blog post about this!” I laugh at the suggestion and say, “Yeah! It’ll start out Dear Rebecca.” Her eyes bug out and we high five our idea. The next 2 minutes, Alyssa purposefully demonstrates the exercises at each station. The next 30 minutes 40 women plus me, make those words on the white board come to life.
The workout has left my muscles tired but our idea has my mind energized. I can’t wait to write.
I clearly remember repeatedly being asked by a variety of people, “Do you know Rebecca Marsick?” My response was always, “No, I don’t know Rebecca Marsick. I know the name, but I don’t know her.”
It was the June of 2015 that I attended the Summer Writing Institute at Teachers College. I sat and drew a tree surrounded by a concrete sidewalk and posted my picture on Facebook. A friend commented, “Are you there with Rebecca Marsick?” I did not know you so how could I know if I was there with you.
From 2011-2017 our paths must have crossed many times. Yet, I never knew who you were. I think I learned we had daughters the same age before I knew what you even looked like. I think I even met Phoebe and you were still an enigma. I came to learn that we both taught in the same district. I came to learn that you, too, were a Literacy Specialist.
It was at a 5th grade orchestra concert that I finally met you – face to face. I was standing in the back of the All Purpose Room and I was talking to Sue Coyne. I can’t remember the conversation but somehow your name came up and I said for the millionth time, “No, I do not know Rebecca Marsick! I know Phoebe, but I do not know her mother.” No sooner did those words fly out of my mouth did Sue turn around and yell “Rebecca, come here!” There I stood before you shaking your hand. “I can’t believe you two don’t know each other!” Sue shared. In the minutes before the concert. We shook hands exchanged a few words about books, and school, and literacy in general. “It’s nice to FINALLY meet you.” I said and we took our seats.
It’s only been a year since that concert, since I laid eyes on you and now I see you every morning at 5:30 for healthy 45 minutes of torture compliments of Alyssa. I now understand, why all those people, for all those years, thought we should know each other. We each have 6th grade daughters, we work in the same district. we both believe in the power of literacy, we both love a good book and we both love a painful, sweaty workout at Burn Boot Camp.
Here’s to you Rebecca!