A little over a year ago, I moved to Austin from Fort Worth (Happy Austi-versary to me!). I had taken a new job and was ready for something new, which turned out to be a whole lot more new than I expected. I had started CrossFit in Fort Worth and my coach recommended a couple of gyms in the Austin area. I was nervous, but eager to give them a try. CrossFit Austin was first on the list.
My first class was a bit of a blur, probably because it was at 5:30 am. I just remember there being burpees and a girl that keep yelling, “Go! You can breathe later!” It was hard, but it was exactly what I needed, and I knew it. I was in.
The next few weeks, as I got settled in to a new house, a new job and a new city, I found my place at CrossFit Austin. I had tried a few different class times, but settled on the noon class and before I really had the chance to meet a lot of people, let alone make friends, the CFA Christmas party was happening. This was my chance, my first social event as a member, to meet new people and make new friends. Maybe I could be friends with the “breathe later” girl!
I had to work that morning, but I was hoping to finish up early and head to the party fashionably late. My last appointment was a consultation that hadn’t confirmed so I was secretly hoping for a no-show and a quick escape. Of course they showed up, and of course there was traffic at noon on a Saturday (which was a surprise to an Austin newbie, I now know better). As I sat in traffic on I-35 I texted coach Gen, was it even worth it to show up so late? I didn’t know anyone anyways. Maybe I should just skip it, better luck next time. But Gen insisted, and for that I am grateful.
I got to the party and saw exactly zero familiar faces. I soon found the coaches I did know, who happened to be huddled together at the time. They quickly greeted me, but I knew I needed to fend for myself and mingle, work the crowd. My first few attempts quickly shattered any ounce of confidence I had mustered up. I even tried saying hi to the “breathe later” girl. After debating on giving it another shot or just heading out, I saw a few girls huddled at a table, one that looked familiar. I went for it.
It was at that table that I met Dylan. Our conversation lead to a question that I will never forget. A question that immediately solidified this new friendship. It was this question, at the 2016 CrossFit Austin Christmas Party, that meant more to me that day, in that season of life, than I can even say.
“Do you want to go get queso?”
Yes, Dylan, yes I do.
And we did. That afternoon, I ate queso with two strangers that quickly became good friends. And a year later, one of them is one of my favorite WOD partners and the other is one of my best friends and my new roommate. I proceeded to spend the rest of the day with Dylan. She invited me to a concert that night, and even gave me a dress to wear (see photo. yes, we went out in public like that!).
So here’s my challenge. This was not only my promise to myself that day, as I entered last year’s CFA Christmas Party, it was also my motto when I moved to Austin and started life in a strange new city. Say yes. Say yes to exciting and unusual adventures. To things that are unknown or unsure at best. To things you would normally fear. And say yes to this year’s Christmas party. Celebrate the year that’s behind and the one that’s ahead with us! Meet some people, who knows, they might end up being some of the greatest friends you’ll ever have!
See you there!