awareness, challenges

My World Erupted

Shaken to the core.

Abruptly awaken.

All seemed taken.

I blinked. I sighed. I swallowed my pride.

One lonely night a medical emergency hit home. The challenges that go with this situation are taxing to say the least. This wasn’t about me, but it spiraled around me. Time spiraled to the east. Memories spiraled to the west. What if scenarios spiraled to the south. Family spiraled up north. The spirals met and formed a chaos cyclone. A circus show in my brain. Who? What? Where? When? Why? Oh my!

Amidst the chaos another lingering shit show keeps rearing its ugly head. Unfortunately, this one is a one and done meaning the gas tank is empty when it comes to help or support. No mental energy. No funds to spare. No support to give as it all falls to the wayside. The taker in life. The taker in my life. The mental strength it takes to keep the takers at bay is not for the weak. A wall of sorts is built. Carefully crafted to shield all my loved ones from the mayhem. Managing this on top of life and unplanned medical challenges is just wow. No words to really describe today. The now.

When I breathe deeply and let it settle in another blow strikes. This one is hard. Straight to the gut. Straight to the heart. Straight to the mind. All the feels. All at once. The pressure is intense. Every calming mechanism is put into play. Repeatedly.

Bend. Flex. Shift. Rebound. Reset. React. Refresh. Think. Act. Recoup. 

One would think I just played a hard core tennis match, but I didn’t. It was just life. The uncertainty of life. The unplanned chaos that can ensue without notice. Sure there are worse scenarios, but in that moment my life was in disarray. It’s seems unforgiving. Relentless forces striking at once. Repeatedly.

Life is full of wonder. Life is full of surprises. Life is full of happy, sad, ugly, fear and so much more. Life is about living and living means shit happens. When life throws the shit show your way, it’s up to you to see the perspective. Don’t crumble. Don’t let fear stand in your way. Live through the turmoil. Learn from mistakes. Find opportunities in the chaos. Fight for you. Fight for those around you.

Bend. Flex. Shift. Rebound. Reset. React. Refresh. Think. Act. Recoup.

Do it as many times as you need to. Be relentless. Be daring. 

author moments

Cel-e-brate

The unexpected happened. I was completely and utterly surprised by my mini.

She wrote something extremely genuine to a friend in need. If I could have written it myself I wouldn’t have changed a word. I had that “oh wow” moment. I did something right! She does listen. I’m really not talking to a teenage wall.

I am celebrating in my mind. In my body. As a mother many days go by when you have a thankless job. Too many actually. This one day made up for the 100 crappy days before.

For today I will take a deep breath and feel the joy associated with this moment. This writing helped a dear friend over a life hurdle. My cup is overflowing in joy for her. For me. For the receiving party.

Now on to the day to see what doom or gloom comes my way. No matter what my heart is full from this one little moment. The moment of words. The wisdom of words. The power of words whether written or spoken. 

change

Change #3,454

It’s early February and I think I just hit change 3,454 for this year. It might not always be change I contributed to. It could be change that impacts me. Maybe even change that hits somebody close to me.

I’ve written about change a few times over the years. One was a thought post about how much I like change back in 2020. Seems so long ago as it was pre-pandemic which is like 5 million changes ago, but who’s counting?

My desire and love of change is ongoing.  Change still holds true today, but I have decided that the changes I like more are full disclosure changes vs hidden changes. For instance if somebody was to be fired in a workplace, I could cope and adjust to said change but I would prefer to know it’s about to happen vs watching it unfold unexpectedly.

If my favorite coffee shop was closing its doors for business I could adapt and go elsewhere but I might want to wish my favorite barista good luck. This means I wouldn’t appreciate the move-out-in-the-middle-of-the-night option. I prefer the sign on the window that says “last day is Saturday.” Now the world isn’t perfect which means I may expect too much of others and how open they may be about sharing the news of change vs fearing the change itself.

Nowadays I have a beef with Starbucks. One location in particular likes to put a hand written not up on the drive through stating closed catch you tomorrow at odd times on random days. This irks me. An unplanned change. Something I didn’t account for nor that I can control. Without notice. Over the last several months my dislike of changes in this fashion irritate me more and more. I cope with change and my irritation subsides however I wonder how many others are bothered in the same way about change. 

My gym changes ownership not once but twice in a short period of time. Out with the old. In with the new. Change everywhere. The paint on the wall. The people in the four walls. A new fresh outlook, cool. Did I suspect change was on the horizon? Absolutely. Will the environment change? Most likely. Will the rules change? Probably. Will the name change? Yes. The list goes on. None of these pieces of change are directed by me but the impact is front and center. For me. For my sweat mates. For many, including the new and old owners. Time is needed for all to adjust. A period of grace for a transition. 

Out with the old or what was new. I’m with the new which was old. So crazy how change goes back and forth and sometimes back again. This is so my life. Front and center. Reaching for growth within the change. At least that’s what I hope change brings for others as it should me.

You see I learn as change surrounds me. From the whispers of those who don’t like change to the trailblazers who force change. For change is really the only constant in life. The days of the week change. The hours or minutes of a day are ever changing. The weather changes. Moods change. 

Funny I talk about change as I wrote about the subject about 13 months ago again. I learned how I like change but my daughter fears change in some instances. As she has spread her wings and sprouted this past year she has been more open to some changes but not all. And funny this week she was insistent on change but she had no power or control to garner the outcome of change she wished to see in her world.

In her athletic journey she hoped for change. She saw the need. She jockeyed for change but fell short. Such a life lesson. You see sometimes we want change but we don’t get the change we want or need. instead we are stuck with changes that others decided for us. Do we sit by and wallow in self pity or do we move ahead and bend, flex or pivot to see the change as an opportunity?

After 3,000 changes I learn to go with the flow. It might not be my change or vision but it was somebody’s. I need to embrace the change however it is thrust upon me. Suddenly or with notice. It’s a practice I’m working on mastering since I stated above I don’t necessarily like surprise changes.

Just another thought post to take out of the vault for others to ponder as they undoubtedly face change in their life. A passing of a loved one brings many changes. A new school or teacher brings change of a different kind. A new city bring a changes of many kinds.

Remember change brings opportunities. You must look beyond the change itself to see how change can truly benefit you.

family, fitness and nutrition, Uncategorized

A Long Time Coming

The Victory Lap of senior year is marching on.

We are over halfway!

The first big end-of-season celebration recently wrapped. Of course, I’m thinking and looking back at how far she has come.

Over 10 years ago, my little scrapper started flag football in our local church league. The teams were coed. She has always liked playing sports with the boys. She relished the chance to go toe-to-toe with them and loved pulling their flags, dodging their “tackles,” and winning. Football of any kind isn’t usually a girl’s sport, so she may have had one other girl on her teams through those years. When she got to 4th grade or so, that age when bodies and minds start to really realize that girls and boys are different, she was the only girl on those teams. Again, she didn’t care and the boys’ fumbly discomfort around her even made her secretly giggle. She still loved running past them for the touchdown. She just wanted to play.

In high school, things get a little more serious. I remember reading in the paper that flag football would be coming to our county as a grant-funded club sport for girls. How exciting! The transition to high school had been a challenge for her and I thought it would be great. But, the schedule and coaches discouraged her from trying out that first year. She could get injured. She was already playing volleyball. It wouldn’t work.

Thankfully, the sport continued into her sophomore year. Again, a club sport, but after not making the volleyball team, the path was cleared for her to try out for flag football. She made that team and had a ball with a group of (mostly) new friends.

During her junior year, flag football became a varsity-level sport in our state, so she could earn her letter and competition would grow. She was named captain of that team and had a great season (despite COVID quarantine and lots of other ups and downs). And then this year, as a senior captain, she again helped lead her team to the playoffs, and was named to all-county teams on both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball. She received her 4th scholar athlete award, keeping her grades up all the while.

As she wound down her high school flag football career, she received what is called the Hawk Award from her coaches. Every varsity team at our school has just one of these awards. It is given to the player that excels on and off the field, in the spirit of the Hawks, her school mascot.

Remembering her first year of high school, when I drove her 30 minutes each morning away from home in the icy dark…she would hardly speak. Later she told me she would cry every single day when she arrived at school. I took her from her neighborhood friends, her safe zone, and plopped her into a school that was so different, so huge, so competitive. She had to work hard to achieve. Seek out help when she needed it. It was an honor to be selected for a team, not just a given. But just like my parents had done for me, pulling me from a sinking neighborhood school and taking me across town to a better high school, it has all worked out for the better. She’s grown to appreciate the opportunity and has made the most of it. She’s become a leader, a scholar, and a Hawk. After all those chilly, quiet, traffic-filled mornings, I can look back and know again that the effort was worth it.

And now on to her grande finale, lacrosse season!

celebrations

32 from Chick 2

Over the last few years, one of the Chicks has made a tradition of a “31 list” at the end of each January. She recaps things large and small that she did in the first month of the year. This year, she went bigger and switched it up to a 49 list in anticipation of her upcoming 50th birthday. Not wanting to break totally with tradition, she asked me to write a list of 32 to recap my January. I’ll try to do it justice! Here goes nothin’.

1.) I saw my daughter play flag football on an NFL field. She was part of a touchdown play.

2.) I rang in the new year asleep, again. A great start for my year of rest.

3.) I took a family member to the emergency room.

4.) I started a new daily journal. So far I’m on the fence about it, leaning toward not liking it.

5.) I committed to a new stretching program.

6.) I made plans for a beach vacation.

7.) I watched my alma mater in the National Championship college football game…at least until the third quarter started. (Being the early-to-bed gal that I am, I couldn’t stay up to see them win.)

8.) I joined another Street Parking challenge with the goal of reducing sugar and stress while maintaining consistency.

9.) I made a decision about where I want to work for my 8-4 job next year.

10.) I survived a car breakin without having a complete mental meltdown.

11.) I planned and replanned a celebration for a high school team.

12.) I wrapped up my primary duties as a booster club president.

13.) I decided not to register for this year’s CrossFit Open.

14.) I bought new CrossFit shoes.

15.) I got my COVID booster shot. Felt crappier after it than the first two.

16.) I lit my stove and did meal prep by candlelight during a snowstorm power outage.

17.) I went kinda off the nutritional rails with fries and chocolate and other sweets after an extremely prolonged holiday season.

18.) I connected with and cheered for some of my favorite high school athletes.

19.) I took a friend to brunch at a new-to-me spot to celebrate her 50th plus a half birthday. I missed the big party last year.

20.) I started a 52 week endurance program on the erg bike.

21.) I went for my first swim of the year.

22.) I started winter sowing flowers to see if our flower season can begin a little earlier this year.

23.) I did a loved one’s laundry and delivered it to him in the hospital.

24.) I attended a funeral for a twenty year old.

25.) I sat back and watched rumors fly about several topics. I chose to just listen and stay out of it.

26.) I spent more time pausing and meditating.

27.) I returned a bunch of gifts that didn’t fit.

28.) I started planning a mountain vacation.

29.) I got a massage for the first time in years. It was as amazing as I hoped it would be.

30.) I continued my move / watch streak, which stands at well over 600 days.

31.) I wrote thank you notes for my holiday gifts.

32.) I celebrated Christmas with my family on January 31 after many delays.

It was a month of big decisions, small moments, and everything in between. Thanks to my friend and fellow chick for lending me her list idea this year. It makes me think I need to write more list posts!