Monday, December 31, 2012

Forty One and 2012

I started this post right around my 41st birthday. You know the ole look back on the year, what was my 41st year like, what do I want my 42nd year to be like. But I never finished it. I was not in a particularly good place around my birthday- I had just come off a crazy couple of months of working, I was getting sick and completely overwhelmed by all things holiday/birthday/school break coming up and frankly just trying to keep my head above water.

So as a huge non-sequitor:

Winter seemed long and icy to me. Not a lot of snow, never got to use the Cross Country skis I bought. Spring was busy. That's what I remember, being constantly on the go from place to event to place.

I remember a couple of times this summer thinking, what an amazing summer we had. I don't remember thinking that in the past few years. I felt like for the most part it was great. We did some fun things- went rope climbing visited friends at their camps, jumped off of rocks. I think also because the weather was so good, that I got out a lot to exercise- running and swimming and biking. Sunshine started to really enjoy biking along side me while I ran, and I completed 3 triathlons this year. I am realizing as I get older that my mental state is so much better when I exercise regularly.

I love fall. Perhaps it is the New Englander in me? Or the girl who got to grow up in the Adirondacks and appreciate the amazing colors Mother Nature provides. I dislike raking leaves. Really, and truly dislike it. But I've reach the point where I actually pay some teenagers to rake the yard for me. Ahh the joys of being gainfully employed!

2012 wasn't a bad year for me, felt like a year with some really great moments coupled with some really low moments. I guess that is what life is about- the good and the bad.

And, all and all my 41st year was pretty good. I'll give you the run down of the numbers at the end, but I earned my red belt, met the 2 goals I set for myself: 500 running miles and completing an Olympic Distance Triathlon. I met 2 Olympic Gold Medalists- Seth Westcott and got to run with Joan Benoit Samuelson.

But you know, as I composed this in my head, that's how I do much of my writing compose it in my head while I run or do dishes or shovel (like this morning)- I thought, with all that, why don't I feel like a million bucks? When was it that I stopped being happy with my achievements. Don't get me wrong, I'm happy in the moment- but then it is gone- like it is never enough. I wonder if I will ever truly get to that Stuart Smalley place of 'I'm good enough, I'm smart enough, and doggone it people like me'? Do any of us ever truly get there? Or is that just the facade we put on for the world? Is there ever a time when hurtful words from people don't sting? Or when rejection (a job, a friend, a loved one, a love interest, a suggestion at work) doesn't nick your heart just a little bit?

Seriously, think about that. I ran over 500 miles this year, and did an Olympic Distance Marathon, earned my red belt, successfully managed several projects at work, continued to raise Sunshine to be amazing, watched her do awesome things and take chances and yet I find it so difficult to just say to myself- Wow, do you know how awesome you truly are?

Instead I so easily let the voices in my head say: you could have handled that interaction at work better. Why did Sunshine do that? Where did she learn that? Have I given her all the tools she needs to survive what can be the horrors of middle school? Sure you ran 500 miles- but your pace slowed in the fall, and your swim times in all three Tri were really slow. Oh- you made mac and cheese again tonight for dinner, from a box? Aren't you a great Mom. And the dishes in the sink- that's classy, and using your laundry baskets to store your clean clothes is all the rage these days.

Truly amazing how difficult we can be on ourselves. I'll own that, amazing how difficult I can be on myself.

So, although I'm not big on resolutions- I'm going to say that my 2013 resolution is to be kinder and gentler with myself, and to only surround myself with people who are kind and gentle with me.

Also going to work on 'changing the voices in my head' to quote from a song that I love running to-- when I run with music.

As for physical goals- run a 100 mile month and complete a marathon.

2012 by the numbers:
21 Races Completed including 3 triathlons
10 Karate Tournaments Competed in
13.1 miles swimming
202.2 miles biking

526 miles running
241 1/2 hours moving my body (running, swimming, biking, Tae Kwon Do, or kicking my butt)

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