The Goddess of Spring and Summer

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Have you ever caught yourself sitting at the pool wondering when you went from being Ariel the little mermaid to Ursula the sea witch?

This thought crossed my mind the other day as I waded around the baby section of the swimming pool on my stomach following Penelope from splash activity to splash activity. The pool zeros in like a beach and at one point I remembered feeling like a beached whale when my belly hit the shallowest section of the pool. At that moment, the ties of my bathing suit floated and curled around my hands reminding me of an octopus. And then it hit me…

I’m Ursula.

Gone are the days of yesteryear when I would swim around the pool with my legs together half drowning, gulping down chlorinated water (and probably some other kid’s pee) in an attempt at dolphin kicking… excuse me, mermaid kicking my way from one end of the pool to the other. At this point I had already picked out what color my sea shell boobies were, and secretly wondered when I would have real boobies to fill out my sea shells. The color usually coordinated with my tail… which was sparkly.

I would always swim to the stairs at the pool where I could whip my wet hair out of my face like Ariel did only to find myself sputtering and sneezing out the water that was inevitably thrust up my nose in the attempt. I didn’t care if the other kids saw me gasping for air and wiping my hair out of my face… one day I would have that move mastered, and it would be awesome!

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(Update: Still haven’t mastered it, but not for a lack of trying.)

Fast forward a few years later…

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I have a toddler sized tan line sunburn line on my inner thighs and the stealth realization that I am no longer Ariel.

This whole thought process had probably been kicked into gear earlier that morning when I got suckered into watching a wrinkle cream infomercial. I’m turning 35 this summer and it has hit me that in a few months I will transition from my “early thirties” to my “late thirties”. I think an identity crisis is underway and it has begun with the loss of Ariel.

Later that day I had packed up my Frozen bag (borrowed from Penelope) with homemade hummus and watermelon in preparation for my bike ride through the neighborhood to my friend’s house for an Outlander watching marathon. My legs were burned to a crisp and my bare blonde eyelashes blinked through the wind as my flip flops peddled as fast as they could go… hair whipping wildly behind me.

Then out of nowhere I heard a voice calling out, “Oh Goddess of Spring and Summer… come hither, come hither!”

What the hell?

It was the weirdo that trains his show dogs in the park by my cul de sac. I had never seen him before, but sometimes I can hear him cheering his dogs on from my backyard. He was obviously trying to pay me a compliment, so I waved and smiled while I peddled all the faster.

But as I rounded the corner the smile on my face lingered…

He called me a goddess.

There wasn’t anything goddess like about my appearance while I peddled in my gym shorts and t-shirt. It must have been my overdue-for-a-haircut hair whipping in the wind behind me that beckoned him to call out.

Score for finally flinging your damp hair in an alluring way! (It took you 25 years…)

From this, a new frame of mind came about and a new age-appropriate idol was born…

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The Goddess of Spring and Summer!

Who Do I Want To Be When I Grow Up?

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I’ve been thinking a lot lately about who I want to be when I grow up. In every phase of my life I’ve looked forward to the day that I would reach this ideal person that I had envisioned myself being. I’ve never quite lived up to this dream person but I’ve taken great comfort in dreaming about who I have the potential of becoming.

I’m 32 and I’ve accomplished some great things. I’ve got a bachelor’s degree in creative writing and I’m working on a master’s degree in secondary education. I married a hottie, I have two kids, a dog, a cute house with a  garden.  I can paint when I want, write when I want and read anything that strikes my fancy. I’ve got it pretty good but I want more.

I feel like I’ve still got a lot of growing up to do and I still find myself asking…

Who do I want to be when I grow up?

I’ll sit in the bookstore and scour health and fitness magazines looking for tips on how to become this elusive person. How do I get more organized? What should I wear? How do I decorate my home? What is the best way to raise my kids? The list goes on and on…

I struggle with the balance of enjoying where I am in the moment with striving to better myself. How do you do that? Being awesome is a constant journey because if you stop pushing yourself than you stop being awesome and you have to catch up all over again. At the same time what good is being awesome if you don’t take the time to marinate in your own awesomeness? (Was there enough “awesome” in that paragraph for you?)

Sometimes I’ll wonder if I’ll ever be that person I dream of being? The one who is organized and stylish and smart and fit… I can usually manage to pull off a few of those things at a time but I’ve never been able to do it all. Am I supposed to be able to do it all?

I people watch all of the time. I’m not going to lie, as I watch them I judge them but only for my own personal comparison purposes. When I compare myself to everyone else I find that I’m right in the middle… average. I’m not the sloppiest person out there but I could use some improvement.

I don’t typically find myself too concerned about what others think of me. You can tell this by my penchant for walking out of the house without makeup, or my uncanny ability to spout inappropriate things at inappropriate times. I may not worry about what other’s think of me but I do worry about what I think of myself. Every once in a while I’ll walk past a window and catch a glimpse of my ragged self or stop to reflect on what I may have just said and beat myself up… that’s the worst. Everybody could hate me and it wouldn’t matter as long as I thought I was pretty cool. If someone else doesn’t like me then that’s their problem but If I don’t like myself then I’m kinda screwed.

When I decide that I’m not up to par I’ll ask myself, “Who do you want to be?” After I’ve decided then I step into that person’s shoes and make the decisions that my dream self would make. What kind of drink would that person order at a coffee shop? What would they do on a Sunday afternoon? What would they wear? What kind of workout would they do? How would they treat other people? How would they treat themself?

This different perspective leads to taking those tiny steps to becoming who I want to be. Before I know it I’m not just dreaming of a better version of myself…  I’m just being it.

Opposite Day

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Do you remember being a kid and declaring a day as “Opposite Day” so that you could piss off your mom by doing the exact opposite of what she told you to do?

This is a genius move as a kid. Because when you got in trouble for not obeying you could simply shrug your shoulders as if the situation was out of your hands and say, “But its opposite day.”

I kind of feel like life is playing this little trick on me at the moment but instead of being incredibly annoying it’s actually worked out in my favor.

Today when I woke up I had this overwhelming feeling that I was pretty awesome. No, not pretty awesome… really awesome.

I have no idea why I felt this way because in the past two weeks I have managed to crash my car, throw out my back and break my dishwasher… that’s not awesome.

When I first started writing this blog I was looking for this moment to arrive. I thought it would happen when I weighed forty pounds less, was immaculately dressed and incredibly organized.

None of that is actually the case but I didn’t want to waste time thinking about that because moments like this are fleeting. So instead, I took a moment to revel in my imperfect glory.

While I was enjoying how awesome I was I decided to jump on the scale and take a sneak peek to see how bad the damage had been since I haven’t been able to workout due to my back injury. I blinked three times when I saw that number because there was no way that it made any sense. I know I’m not supposed to equate how awesome I am by any type of number but it definitely confirmed that things are going my way even when things aren’t really going my way.

I know… I’m just as confused as you are.

Since it was opposite day, I decided to go to the gym and fit in a workout even though I haven’t officially been cleared by the professionals. I didn’t lift any weights but I did get to do a bit of cardio. I had no idea how much I missed sweating on purpose… gross but true.

Then I went outside and picked a ton of weeds another no, no… I’m such a rebel.

I’m sure tomorrow things will go back to normal. That’s when we’ll find out how my back feels.

Keep your fingers crossed, will ya?

 

Week 10 Weigh-in

Holy crap…it’s been ten weeks!

I haven’t had the most dramatic outcome on the scale even though I’ve had progress but I’m in such a good place now compared to when I started.

I have a love hate relationship with myself. Sometimes I think I’m the coolest chick I know and then other times I don’t even want to be my own friend.

These days I’m back to winking at myself in the mirror and checking out my own butt… this is totally normal, I assure you.

Anyhoo, today is weigh-in day and I am proud to report that the scale says 204.2.

This is one pound less than last week. I was pretty relaxed with my diet and I didn’t get to workout as much as I would have liked but I feel good.

Yesterday the weather was beautiful so I strapped Penelope in the jogging stroller to get some fresh air. Usually when we go for a run I have her sitting in the baby car seat facing me so that I can see if she’s fussy. Yesterday I was desperate for a nice long run so I let her sit facing out like a big kid.

She loved it, kicking her feet and waving to the people and dogs that we passed.

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Before I knew it we had run around the lake three times. That’s a little over 4 miles. I felt so good running. My legs were strong and the way I move is so different from when I first started. That was one of the little things that I looked forward to, moving like an athlete.

I’m hoping to be under 203 lbs next week which will be my lowest weight since having Penelope. By the time I reach 187 I get to make another visit to Lululemon to buy a pair of shorts… or two as a reward. I can’t wait for summer to come so that I can run my heart out in my new shorts and show off how great my muscly legs look with a tan.

How did your week go?