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Posts Tagged ‘girlfriends’

PEI is the new Vegas.

May 28, 2010 Leave a comment

Who in their right mind would pass up a low-cost, child-free girls weekend trip to beautiful PEI? When H invited me to a weekend away in PEI, I was like YES, but no. Maybe? No. No. TOTALLY!!! but…maybe not.

In my life, I place so much of my own value on my kids, it seemed unimaginable to separate myself from my “mom” identity. My kids have allowed me to find firm beliefs and passion in my world. My insecurities never allowed me to really push a point or believe hard in something, just for little old me. But having kids allows me to ask the right questions and really get into the issues, after all, it’s for my kids. I’m not an asshole, I’m a MO-THER.

So going away without kids seemed that it might strip me of the relatively new strong woman aspect of personality and send me straight back into awkward, left-out-edness. And yo, when I’m awkward, everyone’s feeling awkward. I really didn’t want to bring the awkward. Plus, I wasn’t too sure that I need a “break” from my family. I spend the majority of my life in a grey box away from my family. Sacrificing three entire days with them felt like straight-up BAD MOTHER territory.

But, while I initially struggled, worried that I would somehow be struck down by social anxiety, in reality, I felt more myself than I had in a while. How we spent the time was dictated by what we actually wanted to do, when we wanted to. It was not based on a timetable of scheduled meltdowns, diaper changes, or naps.

I swore like a trucker, didn’t remind anyone to say “excuse me” when they burped, sat in the same spot for over ten minutes. When the siblings began to fight, it really wasn’t my responsibility if they killed each other or not. I went into stores that had easily breakable items. I went into stores with brightly coloured items. And my blood pressure stayed stable.

I laughed ridiculously hard at ridiculous (and at times, completely inappropriate) things, smoked a cigarette (or two) during daylight hours, assigned a soundtrack to nearly all events, learned things I never wanted to know about my friends, and watched a full 2 hours of The Bachelorette – no fast-forwarding (now that’s what I call awkward).

On our last day, I woke up to overhear discussions of possibly not making our flight (standby’s a fickle mistress). Ah, there it is. Anxiety. Hello, old friend! I started wildly mentally calculating if I had enough credit on any of my cards to straight-up buy a ticket home. But by the time we’d committed ourselves to the Charlottetown-Toronto leg, I was accepting, and perhaps almost hoping for, the possibility of being stranded in Toronto overnight.

A weekend “off” will now be an annual requirement in my mom contract…but so long as I’m supplemented with regular nights out/in/off, I can wait another year to do it again.  And only if I can do it with the Walker girls.

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Vancouver Sun Run (1:12)

May 19, 2010 Leave a comment

This year, I really fell off the running wagon. Working full-time really does take up a lot of time, I guess. Add in a travelling husband and not-so-suddenly, running falls to the bottom of the to-do list. I also got in my own way, as I have a habit of doing.

Because that is a LOT of people to be smushing up against

On the first Sun Run clinic day, I “ran” with the Learn to Run Faster group. We didn’t do much warm-up and just started running right away, which didn’t agree with my early-Sunday-morning body. It quickly became apparent that I should have gone with the Learn to Run group – and possibly the slowest…most beginner…is there a seniors’ group?! I tried to veer off and just go home and start fresh for next week but apparently that’s Not Allowed. Let’s just say it was a very awkward start to the clinic.

Over the next few weeks I think I finally settled into a groove somewhere near the medium LTR group. But, miss a week or two, and suddenly the confidence that comes with running FOUR minutes at a time (shut up!) with one minute intervals of walking, disappears when faced with the prospect of having to run eight minutes at a time. I’m full of excuses too. Sunday mornings in our house are just so cozy…coffee and the paper and usually still-cheerful boys.

Initially I didn’t think I was going to do the actual run at all. Mothers’ Day, too hot, too many people, more excuses. Near the end after I’d all but officially “dropped out”, I somewhere along the line joined the group of participants. In fact, I think I was just told “you’re doing it”, and somehow unlike the weekly clinics I simply obeyed orders.

Over the few weeks preceding the run I ditched the excuses (and my run buddy: sorry, Bradley Cooper), and simply hit the treadmill 3-4 times a week. With a 30 minute limit I wasn’t even hitting 5K, so I still wasn’t so sure about trying the clinic…

The night before the Sun Run I did almost back out, but I didn’t want to make a big deal. That was my goal for this year: Don’t make a big deal. I was kind of mad that last year’s protestors and crowds got in my head at all. Don’t make a big deal. So I didn’t.

This year’s run was completely different. Whether it was because of timing or because we came into the downtown core a different way, I’m not sure, but the crowds were tolerable. The vibe was completely different. Instead of protestors, at the start and all through the race, there was only happy little cheerleaders and husbands holding up “HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY” signs.

While the weather made it a little squinty and sweatier than average, it contributed to the happy-happy-joy-joy vibe of the day. Now I’m not saying that I floated like an eagle and didn’t ever raise the “oh-god-why” question, and that having people whip by me on my walk intervals didn’t nearly trigger a panic attack, but it was overall a good, fantastic, awesome day.

This is definitely, 100% awesome.

I did suffer a little bit of a sinus headache attack near the end (I think I was running behind someone with perfume on), but much thanks to my prepared girls, a few Advil seemed to ease the pain. And not having to enter into the crowded dungeon that was BC Place eased the pain TREMENDOUSLY. Being Mother’s Day, we tried to make it home relatively early. We walked a bit, got frappucinos at Starbucks (yes, my first frappe), and got home in time to celebrate with families.

Still not sure I’ll be back to do it again (of course I will), but I’m really glad I gave it another try.  I’m glad that I got out of my own way, at least for 1:12.

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