So do you know what happens when you stop dreaming? You don't care, that is what happens. You let everything become ho hum and hum drum and sometimes you allow things to continue to happen to you that you should have put a stop to years ago but you just let it continue because quite frankly you have no plan on being around much longer to have to deal with it. Then one day you wake up and realize that contrary to what you believed just a few short months ago.. here you are still here, still living and all of a sudden you have a dream.
Well if that isn't just the scariest thing ever.
Especially since here I now stand with a dream in one hand and huge mess in the other hand of all the years I wasted and allowed others to walk all over me. Believe me when I tell you that doing what you think it is right can and will come back and bite you in the rear end. It is another whole situation of putting on your own oxygen mask before assisting someone else. Just so happened this situation the people just kept taking my air over and over and I allowed it. For a VERY LONG TIME, even before life became terrible I allowed it, then after it became terrible I just gave up and allowed the take take take. There is still a mess in that other hand and will be for a long time. Yes I feel like an idiot but it is what it is. I just didn't realize how much some things would matter when I woke up and decided that life truly was not over.
So along comes a dream like a spider who sat down beside her, her being me and no I don't have a muffett or a tuffett or curds and whey, but the spider... errr hmm dream is just about to scare me away! It is frightening. I can't stop thinking of it. I have lined my ducks as straight as I can get them in hopes in a few months the dream could become reality, the scary part comes in with the fact that my ducks always seem to waddle the hell off! It is incredibly terrifying to believe in a dream. To plan a future.. even a few months out. I have had all of my dreams ripped away in a blink of an eye and it nearly took me with it. So the question is how do you do it? How do you put yourself out there again on the ledge and actually jump and believe that it is going to be ok. The actual fear of failing is so great that it truly makes me want to just throw my hands up and walk away from it, even though it could possibly be what all my dreams for a future could be made of.
So for now I am just going to put one foot in front of the other and pray for a miracle.
Love and Peace
I had last night off, I decided that instead of going out and doing doing doing doing I was going to stay in and just physically reset myself for another long day and then hustle and bustle of getting ready for vacation. I made myself a nice dinner and sat down to watch a movie. I chose The Shack.
I know it is rather shocking that I would randomly chose this movie after vowing I wouldn't or couldn't sit through it but I figured worse case scenario I was home alone and I could turn it off and throw the remote through the TV if needed. It was not that bad.. I cried, probably more that most people would but the movie itself was very good. I can see why it received some nasty Christian comments as it doesn't really fit in the mold they have made God or Jesus into and that is ok. I am not here to judge anyone else's thoughts or beliefs only mine.
The main part of this movie is a family who lost a child, a daughter to be exact. While the situation was completely different than mine it was completely the same. This family, the father actually looked away, and when he turned around found his whole life upside down. I looked away, I thought everything was fine, I wasn't there to protect her, I didn't teach her the things she needed to know... while it was completely different it was all the same. A terrible man snatched this little girl... A terrible God snatched my little girl.
Through out my journey I have gone through periods of extreme anger at God, my closets of friends and family know this. They have witnessed it. I go through anger at myself due to parental failure. I deal with the shame of deserving my kids to be taken away as a punishment by God for my past. So over and over this movie continued to hit home in how I dealt with the deaths of these two beautiful children in my life. I blamed myself for not being there, I blamed God for not stopping it. I judged others around me who I felt how can this person still be here yet they took my beautiful girl! How am I still here.. I don't belong here. Maybe I do and this is just hell.
So I sat through this movie as I watched the father's agony over losing his beautiful child and the blame he placed on himself and God and I cried. Ok I cried a lot. My take away from the movie was simple. Forgiveness. The key to all is forgiveness and release. It is time to lay my beautiful girl to rest in my heart. To bury the tragedy and the pain before it completely consumes the remaining time I have. While her earthly body is in a grave far from me I have carried her with me in my mind and my heart and more times than I care to admit it is the horror of that day that comes forth. Not her beautiful smile or her infectious laughter... just the horror. It is time to wrap her battered and broken body and lay it peacefully to be buried with love in my heart so that her beauty can shine through. To do this I have to forgive myself for not being the mom she needed. I can not change the past, it is set in stone but I can move on and try my best to live in a way she would have wanted.
So while the movie was hard to sit through.. it left me better than I was. To me that is a win.
Love and Peace,
PS I don't think God has a beard.
The journey to the impossible. I was sitting last night talking to friends after a long evening shift at work and one of them told me that they couldn't possibly go on if they lost a child. I immediately rebuffed this statement and told them they were wrong. That on that first day you believe that, you truly believe the world is going to swallow you whole and you will just be gone too. Oh who am I kidding you feel this way for a LONG time, but the entire time you feel this way you are putting one foot in front of the other carrying on day to day activities even if you feel empty inside, right up until one day you realize "Hey! Look at me! I am living again!" I do mean really living, not just going through the motions and saying you are doing it, you are REALLY doing it.
I am not sure when it happened, but it seems it did. I sat there last night in a bit of a shock going on in my head while I went on discussing things and as I drove home, I thought to myself. "Wow I really meant that" I am not faking the funk right this minute, I really am carrying on. I do realize that I am completely and totally broken and that will never be fixed but I can live life broken. I have dreams, I don't mean little silly dreams like buying a jeep (yes that is a silly little dream) I mean life long dreams and plans for a future. For the first time in 4 years and 2 months ... I am planning a future!
The plans I have will take a lot of hard work, long hours, dedication, commitment, help from loved ones and friends, but I see this dream taking me to the end of my life, which I don't see as tomorrow anymore. Someone asked me one time, "Why don't you save any money?" My response to that was, "What for? I don't plan on being around long enough to spend saved money." I truly believed in my heart and soul that I was going to be swallowed by the universe, if that be by natural causes, an accident, my own hand.. I don't know but I did not feel like I was alive and I imagine some part of me was hoping to just physically be dead as well.
I am not in any way saying that things are perfect, I am not saying that the sadness is gone forever, or that I will never hit the low again. What I am saying is right this minute I have a dream and I feel alive!
I know there are a lot of contributing factors in all of this. A man who believes in me and cares enough not to give up. A trainer and a partner who are always a text a test and a kettlebell away, they are so much more to me than they understand. A bootcamp family that is always there to lift me up in times of sadness. A family who supports me no matter how many times I trip up and need some help standing. A best friend who shared her dream with me even when I forgot how alive it made me feel to be there and living it with her. Children who put up with all of the craziness and yet continue to love me. Parents, I am not sure what to say about my parents, I am sure that more than once in the last few years they wondered if they were going to lose their daughter too, yet they never shoved me away or tried to hold me too close, I guess I had parents who had faith I would see my way out of this. But the biggest contributing factor is myself, that regardless of how incredibly horrible things got I managed to keep on putting one foot in front of the other, refusing to give up, now allowing myself to quit. In all of this I have gained what I thought was the impossible because I have already gone through the unimaginable.
Here's to the rest of the impossible.
Love and Peace
This photo popped up in my memories today. It was a very long drawn out post about how I needed to make a change and that I was seriously considering weight loss surgery. A year later I am still not much lighter but I am a quite a bit smaller than I was and quite frankly a lot stronger.
I won't sugar coat it at all, it has not been an easy year. I know you are thinking "But you got home.. you are at your beach.. you should be so happy." trust me I could not agree more but it just doesn't work that way. Things were just difficult, lots of changes, lots of sadness, lot of hard work, lots of tears, and lots of yelling but here I am a year later. Still kicking. Still fighting. Still training.
I have a race in 3 weeks. It's part of my unicorn series to Spartan trifecta, two races back to back days with about 35 hard obstacles.. and mud lots of mud. It is what I have been training for, yes I said it I actually trained for something, I have almost everything it takes for this. There is just one missing element. The run. My feet have been so messed up that it has just been impossible to train for that. I am going to have to wing it. I know I have the strength and determination to complete the challenge, so I am not overly concerned. I may be a little behind my team, ok a lot behind but that is ok, we will all finish.
I know you are wondering where the heck am I going with all of this, well this morning I got up and was getting ready for bootcamp and thought to myself .. "What the hell are you doing??? 5 days ago you were standing on the beach almost unable to move due to the driving pain in your feet. You have a race in 3 weeks.. bootcamp will be there after, this race is what you are training for! You aren't going to get the run back in 3 weeks anyway, but especially if you are still in pain!" So I stood there in the middle of my floor wondering who the hell just said that, because surely it was not me. Not the me that just keeps going regardless, not the me that will attempt to run down the beach in massive amounts of pain because someone told her to. Not the me that will attempt to lift up the log and put it over her shoulder that would probably take two men to do because she didn't realize it was a joke. This me doesn't give up. Who is this person giving up??
Then I sat there and thought to myself, I work tonight... tomorrow night... have training tomorrow and Friday and bootcamp graduation on Thursday and a 5k on Saturday and work again Saturday night. That is a lot on top of my 9 to 5 not to mention it is a lot of feet time. So what about this morning, why was the voice screaming in my head to slow my roll, to put the braces back on and give the feet that 2 hours of rest? Because for the first time the athlete in me was louder than the just do it to be doing it me. The athlete took in the whole picture and the goal, not just the right here right this minute.
As I sat here and contemplated these things this morning I realized that part of my issue with my self worth and self image was I have never imaged I could ever be an athlete. I was too fat, too slow, too hurt, but since when do any of those things define an athlete? I considered my friends athletes and I was out there doing the same things with them, but I was not. I was different, I was not good enough. Today I realized that all of those things that I felt were holding me back from greatness are not even part of the definition of who I want to be!
1. a person who is proficient in sports and other forms of physical exercise.
No where does the definition say that you have to be skinny, or fast, or that you have to win just that you have to be proficient. Today I became an athlete, not by running on the beach, or by carrying a keg a mile, or by doing 75 burpees, today I became an athlete by listening to my body and focusing on the long term goals and facing the fact that I am good enough.
I am an athlete.. I am unbreakable.
Have you ever been unnecessarily disappointed in something? How about if that something was yourself? Have you ever felt a deep rooted feeling of failure? An ache in your heart so deep that surely it will be there forever?
On April 19th 2012 I was handed an honor grad tag, for coming so far so fast were the words used. You see I started training for a half marathon and I went from being able to only run one minute to running 13.1 miles in 6 weeks time. It was slow running but running none the less. I had no idea that day that one year and one day later everything would shatter.
Over that year I ran races, I got my best time ever on a 5k, crushed my half marathon time, did a spartan, participated in upper level bootcamp, assisted in coaching another camp, ran countless miles, became someone that I actually liked. Then it all ended. Those 366 days flew by, the summer she was here was a blink, there just wasn't enough time. 366 days and my heart was crushed, everything I knew shattered.
I buried my honor tag the day I buried my daughter. She deserved it, she loved her bootcamp family and was looking forward to attending again when she came back to the beach. That day, her last day, she had to have been wearing her shirt, we never found it. So somewhere in heaven there is an angel sporting bootcamp red and all the souls are wondering.. what exactly is 18.104.22.168.20. anyway?
So what is all of this about you are probably wondering. The day I gave Deanna my tag, I had a heart conversation with her, I could hear her saying "No, mommy, that's yours" and I told her that it was ok, that mommy would get another one, this one is yours now, you are my honor grad, I will get another. Here I am 4 years later and I have failed at everything. In 21 days my beautiful girl will have been gone 4 years, in that time I have done nothing to keep any promises I made. I can't run a 30 minute 5k, I can barely finish a half, I have no idea how I am going to finish a spartan, much less two, I have not made her death mean anything, I struggle every day just to stay alive, and I certainly have not done anything to keep my promise of getting another one.
I feel like I am always one step behind, that I just can't keep up, that there is a heavy fog blanketing everything I do, and the weight of the heartache I carry on my shoulders. In four years I have not figured out how exactly to make it through this, to break back into someone that I can admire and actually like, to make some kind of sense out of all of it.
I can't figure out how to make her proud.
I am tired.
And today.. right this minute.. I just want to quit.
I don't write enough about the good stuff. It's not because the good stuff does not matter it is more because most of the good stuff is already shared with others and the good stuff does not have this overwhelming desire to escape my soul through words. Sometimes I can hold on to them and cherish them for awhile before sharing and sometimes I don't let them out at all because they are the things that is keeping me rooted here on earth.
Today is a good stuff day.
Four and a half years ago Deanna started doing bootcamp with me. She got up every morning of camp and went (well except that one time she didn't come home at all and a beautiful red head and I ended up hunting her down) she completed her training through out the summer, she made new friends and found a piece of herself out there on those early mornings through sweat, tears, and a tad of blood. I was so incredibly proud of her the day she graduated, high up on that monument over looking our home, while our neighbors were still sleeping. I still grieve over the lost moments, I never saw her walk across the stage for her diploma, she never had the chance to marry, or have her own babies, all moments that a mother is proud of her child, but that moment, standing there with our friends and coaches, I have that moment to cherish for the rest of my life.
Fast forward to today, I stood again on top of that monument, the sun wasn't shining, it still had not risen, it wasn't warm, in fact we ended up soaking wet. It wasn't his first bootcamp, he did that years ago, but it just did not click. It wasn't even his third, that was 6 weeks ago, but today at the end of his 4th bootcamp, I stood in the exact spot I stood with his sister, absolutely full of pride and cherishing a moment that I knew would be held on to forever. My son stood there, with not only people he has made his friends but those that he now considers family, as I have done for years now, after finishing 100 miles in 6 weeks.
100 miles is hard work. It takes dedication and a commitment that only one can make on their own. Many miles he ran alone with his only motivation to continue the next step was his own soul, and my boy did it. Through his own sweat, tears, and his own drops of blood (and a couple of near death experiences.. don't ask) he completed this goal that he set out to achieve, and in those miles I believe he found some of himself, as well as a family he didn't know he had.
One of the questions that continues to pop up in the Outer Banks Triple Threat Bootcamp is "What's your Why?" I have written on the topic before and my why has been the same, "To live like I am living, instead of living like I am dying". It is a daily struggle for me, I will admit that freely and have often. Today however, the why was not about me, it was about him and being there for him to see his achievement, through my own pain I made it to the top of the monument and was there as he stepped the last step of that 100 miles and it was then in that second I realized, that my why wasn't so he could be part of my moment of pride for him but it was so I could be part of his. That struggling every day to live isn't about me, it's about giving my boys, my friends, my family those very moments that I continue to grieve for.
So .. What's my Why? The Moments.
I am so completely and utterly proud of you! I love you son. Keep on reaching for new goals and enjoy the moments of success!
Have you ever spent an entire day riding roller coasters? Its so fun at first and everyone is screaming and laughing and smiling, then mid day your arms are tired from holding on, your throat is starting to twinge, your abs feel like you have done 32423493743 sit ups, but you still squeal and laugh and smile. As darkness falls and the lights of the park shine and everyone is still all smiling and laughing and screaming and you continue to as well.. in the back of your mind you are thinking ... HOW are they still all so happy.. everything HURTS and I just want my bed!!!!
That is exactly what depression is like.
First off it is much like a roller coaster in the fact that you have no idea if you are going to be up or down or in the lights or darkness, you have NO IDEA!!! It's all a mystery until it happens, but that is not what I am talking about here. Follow along...
So reread the first paragraph. Notice that everyone is smiling and laughing and having a WONDERFUL time, in the morning, midday, evening.. still smiling and laughing. Even at the end when you are just over it all and in pain, still smiling and laughing. What you don't realize when you look around is that everyone around you has hurting feet, sore abs, itchy throats, but no one wants to be the one that say.. I hurt. They don't want to be the one that ends everyone's happy day. So they smile and laugh and you never know.
I received a text last night that had multiple points in it that the sender had made about themselves. I read them and I knew there was a silly undertone to it but also knew the statements to be true but I didn't see them as negative things about this person. It was just where life had taken them. My only response was What the Hell???? They very quickly let me know they were writing their own blog post and these were the bad things they felt.
Further along in the conversation it was stated that they didn't understand why I was so hard on myself, but they too understood because they felt the same thoughts. In a million years I would have never guessed, or fathomed that they were in anyway at all sad much less feel negativity toward themselves. It made me wonder how many people were riding the roller coaster and smiling and laughing but wanted to chop their feet off because they hurt so bad.
It made me feel not so incredibly alone.
Maybe if I took the time to just look around, instead of straight down off of the edge, I would find that there are probably others standing right there beside me, others not only needing a kind word in support of the truth I know about them but are also there to lend me the hand I need to see more than the failure. The bottom line is we are all struggling with something, I just don't mind telling people my feet hurt and this is not fun anymore, while others hide it all too well and we don't even have a clue.
We all deal with our struggles differently, me I turn to food and a glass of wine or 6. It is difficult to let go of your security blanket, unfortunately my security blanket is also causing me feelings of failure in other aspects such as my weight and my training ability, so I have a catch 22 going on. Some people hide their struggles, some people talk them over with only close friends, some of us parade them around on the porch for the neighbors to see, and it is all ok.
The important thing here is to just realize we aren't alone.
While I continue to struggle and hang on each and every day, please know, that if I could help just one person in anyway I would. Sometimes, it is the purpose we need to just get to tomorrow.
Much love to you my friends.
PS sorry if this got a little scrambly... I don't think my thoughts were coming out like I intended.
But today has definitely been a doozie!
There is really no point in going into all that has gone absolutely backwards since 12:01 am today but lets just say it has been INSANE! It's really neither here nor there and the little sickly monster Banx is recovering nicely on a nice clean pile of clothes that I hadn't managed to fold yet. No, I don't have the heart to make him move I will just wash them again, and I will snuggle him later even if he has turned today on it's end all before I had coffee.
I am in a slightly better place than I was last week and the week before but no where near Ok. I am still racked with never being good enough, strong enough, fast enough, that I am a disappointment and a burden. I am not smart enough, financially stable enough. I eat too much, I drink too much, I don't exercise enough. I am too fat, too weak, too short. I am not committed enough.
It is times like this that I can't find not even one good thing about myself. Nothing. That at 45 years old I am nothing more than a failure. It doesn't matter what you say to me.. that is what I see. Words don't really matter much because my brain can twist them around faster than an Oklahoma tornado (do they have tornado's in Oklahoma?) People don't really mean it.. they are obligated because they are decent kind humans. It's what normal people do, they try to help the pathetic.
I still have two choices, keep on just fighting or stop.
Some where in the middle of all of this there has to be a reason. A purpose. I don't think I was left here on this Earth to be a colossal failure. I do not want to die useless. So the only option left is to keep going, even on days like today when I just don't see the point and it is hard to see through the tears of trying to understand why God would take two of my beautiful babies that were so full of promise ,love and ambition and leave such a failure here for everyone to have to deal with.
I "stole" this image right off of someones wall.. I have a habit of "stealing" from said person. Her Kitchen Aide mixer is currently residing in my pantry, her eye ball ring on my window sill, her shoes are not in my closet but that is only because I have not been able to find them, so I am pretty sure she won't be all to surprised to see this being recycled on my blog. Anyhoo.. there it is.. and they were just too perfect not to use.
It is important to point out that I do know I post about my emotions and feelings and where I am in life at the moment a lot. Hell I post a lot period but there are very good reasons I post about where I am in life. It's not for attention as some have stated.. well maybe it is but not self fulfilling attention. It is to bring attention and awareness to a problem. A problem I have, a problem others have, a problem that you .. you reading this may have. I just have this ability to write about it, so that is what I do.
Some times like yesterday it was a cry for help. Some days it is just because I need to get the words out of my head. Some days it isn't even about me and more about something I have witnessed in someone else. There are some important things to understand in all of this, I will try to discuss them now.
First and foremost, I do know I am playing a dangerous game with my own life. It is not for everyone, I don't suggest or even being to imagine that anyone should try to do it. No, that does not mean I think I am better than others, or have more fight in me, in all honestly it may mean I am flat out stupid, but it is where I am right now. I have medical diagnoses for what is wrong with me, it is more acronyms than I care to go into and if you really want to know I don't mind telling you but it is irrelevant to this discussion. They want me medicated, the same they that didn't want to give me an antibiotic when I felt like I was dying, actually want me to take more pills in a days time that there are days in the week. Nope, no thank you. This problem I have is like the words above say... a wave.. it is a disgusting ugly nasty black tidal wave.. but a wave. It isn't an endless pit, a black hole into nothingness, an ocean of misery, it's a wave. The darkness will subside and the sun will shine again, the problem is if I was medicated not only does the darkness stay away so does the light and you end up living in a gray area that doesn't matter at all. I don't want that to be my life. I deserve more than gray.
Second thing I know, the light is an amazing place to live, but sometimes I burn just a little too brightly and the light gets me in trouble too. I might take risks that others wouldn't dream of, I might spend more money than I have, or I may create an amazing piece of art and throw it away because one thing wasn't right. So far I have managed to control that to a degree and I continue to try.
Next up.. my weight. I work out a lot. I know most of you think why doesn't she weigh 0 by now. Well because of a couple of things. Food and Wine never fail you, they never leave you and they never die. They make very good friends, I didn't say that they don't hurt you, but it is very easy to turn to them. That is why. I know I need to try harder to eat right and drink less. I will get there, just not today I am sure.
I smile. I laugh. I have a good time. I enjoy my friends and family. I walk my Banx. I snuggle with Ilona's doggies. I take pictures. I post funny stuff. I work out. I show up. I do many things that don't look like depression, I think this confuses people into thinking I am ok. Just because I look ok on the outside, does not mean I am not drowning on the inside.
I am exhausted. Physically and Mentally. Yes I do sleep but it is not sleep I need. I need peace.
I am in pain. Physically and Mentally. I don't know which is causing which anymore.
The most important thing you need to know, goes back to the first thing. I know how dangerous this is. I know I am standing on the edge of a cliff watching the wave come barreling at me. I know all it would take was for me to falter just once and it would take me out to sea. For right now I am hanging on, I know there is sunshine right on the other side, but, if ever it takes me, don't be sad, I have been ready to go for a long time.
Love and Peace,
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