Two more days.
Just two more days until we can bid adieu to 2019, and frankly I’m happy to do so. The year has been tough, but I will say that the past decade wasn’t all bad. In fact, I realized that 2010 was the year that my life changed and the past 10 years have been me adapting to that change and figuring out a new life. You see, in 2010 I became a mother. I was 36 years old, had been married for about a year and a half, and was eagerly awaiting the birth of my son. I had big plans. He would be born in May. I would complete the requisite 6 weeks of recovery and be back to my rowing training, and I had the BOB stroller ready to go so that running could be added into the mix. I would be one of those “running moms” who so effortlessly combine motherhood and top-level fitness. I was ready. But life had other plans for me.
I never did return to rowing.
Those hourly wake-ups that my son so love really cut into my desire to get up at 4:30am to row. Motherhood was tough - it did not come as easily to me as I had believed that it would. By the time my son was sleeping better, I was pregnant with my daughter and looking at the door of 40-years-old. This was a second chance at my dream. I had left my job as a high school teacher and athletic trainer to stay at home with my kids. There was nothing to stop me this time. Sure, two kids might be a bit more challenging in the BOB (now double) stroller. I had completed my doula training and was also attending home births as a midwife's assistant. I was working through my first health coaching course -- I was ready this time. But once again, life had a different plan.
The homebirth of my daughter was wonderful, but then everything fell apart.
I was diagnosed with pelvic organ prolapse, the trifecta of cervical, cystocele, and rectocele. I sunk into a deep depression because everything I was told indicated that a return to sport was no likely and my identity as an athletic woman would need to change. My dream of being this stay-at-home mom who kept fit was engaged with her kids, and active in the community slipped away. Who was I anymore? I wasn’t the cherished athletic trainer anymore. I wasn’t a good homemaker (what an archaic term), I wasn’t anyone but a broken woman whose body had failed her. What life could I make with that? I pulled up my big girl pants and started trying to move forward because I refused to neglect my family. I dove into learning more about women’s health and pelvic floor disorders because I fully believed that if I could return an athlete back to play after a catastrophic knee injury, then I could help women return to sport after core dysfunction issues. Because it’s all muscle and it’s all connected. And I was right, but the way I approached it was wrong. I dove too far into my own learning and helping others and forgot to help myself. I love the programs that I’ve created and the knowledge that I’ve added to my wheelhouse but I don’t love the person I’ve become in the process.
As an empath and an introvert, I tend to put others first because I cannot bear their pain and disappointment.
I am a natural “fixer”, something I’ve experienced since I was young, but only this past year started to understand why that is. I’ve struggled with my own health for years, but I believe that the root cause of that is my failure to turn inward and start working on me. It’s much easier for me to give you all the information you need to heal than it is to step back and apply it to myself, but this past year has revealed that it’s what needs to be done.
I moved to Colorado in 1996 with the dreams of becoming the cliche “adventure girl”.
I would embrace hiking and all things outdoors because that’s always been where I find my peace. I would have my Jeep and Golden Retriever and create a life that supported the Colorado dream that began when I was 15 years old. Thirty years later I am far from that dream girl, but I think now is the time to finally become her. To embrace the parts of me that fuel and enliven me, and step back from the tasks that drain and deplete me. And so I’m going into 2020 with two words to guide me - “me” and “play” - and my beloved phrase as “move, heal, play” to be the path to finally realizing this identity that I’ve held onto for so long. I will still be helping others but making sure that I have carved out time to first help myself.
And so I’m closing down the 2010s with a tip of a hat and a genuine expression of thanks for being a decade for learning and growth.
For allowing me to experience change and disappointment, but for also bringing me so many blessings and clarity. As I move into the 2020s and fully enter midlife, I feel that I am more clear about what I want and who I want to be. If you need me, I’ll probably be outside somewhere. This time in my Subaru Outback and with my Blue Heeler mix as my companion. I hope to cross your path many times over the next decade and learn about your current adventure and plan.
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