Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Deep Breath...

For anyone who's read my last few entries, you know things have been not-so-cheery. In my posting absence, and aside from my holiday indulgences, I have been working on knocking down those walls I have so painfully been dealing with my entire life.

As I sit down to write this post, I envision running...Ironman...Hobbits/Orcs...and how I would relate my self imposed goals for 2009 to those subjects. I thought first about running and how the goals I have set will be like going for a long run...sometimes I'll feel good, then not so good (maybe sad, maybe hurt) and then most likely good again. Then I thought about Ironman and how it calls for you to dig deeper and deeper each time you dare step up to the challenge. But what really kept coming to mind were Hobbits and Orcs...I feel much like a Hobbit (less the hairiness...although, if I stop waxing...ok, TMI) battling the evil Orcs (which would be my demons). Frodo had many battles to fight and often felt scared and weak, but he always found the courage to go on and keep to his promise. And he always had help. He always had people or creatures to help him find his way. I am fortunate to have many helpers, I just need to reach out to them and that for me has always been difficult. Anyhow, I have made my references and now I will get to what I really want to say.

I am beginning to stand up to myself for myself. I have dared myself to look deep inside by putting pen to paper and acknowledging the demons and arming myself with weapons to combat these saboteurs. This is the year I take the steps I have needed to take for years...always having turned away out of fear and using excuses like "I can handle it" and "I know better"...and even though, yes, I can handle it and I do know better...I never did. I didn't handle things and I was too stubborn to admit when I needed help.

A lot of things have happened over the last few weeks - I lost a teammate. I almost lost love. I realized how much I have been holding myself back from living...really living and being happy. I've had my head in the sand...something (when I was younger) I vowed I would never do.

It ends here.

I am putting this out there for you...for me. So that I may hold myself accountable. So that I shift course and make positive changes. So that I do not continue down the same paths. There have been times in my life that I have been able to deviate from the negative and I can remember those, even if only vaguely, and I remember how good I felt. How proud of myself I was for taking the leap. Now, I have to dig deep again...find that strength to take control of my life.

Deep breath...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Life, Death and Something in Between

"Tomorrow is promise to no one."

I don't know where I heard this or who I need to credit with this, but I know one is more true today than it was before this weekend.

I'm not exactly sure where to begin explaining what is bouncing off the walls of my mind. Let me throw out some words that come to mind from those 48 hours: shock, disbelief, numbness, love, sorrow, disappointment, fear, love, grief, joy, guilt.

I learned Sunday afternoon, as I was looking up marathon race results for my teammates, that one of us, Erin Lahr, had collapsed at mile 21 of the Dallas White Rock Marathon and died.

She died.

At 29.

She was an accomplished marathoner and loved to run. I didn't have the pleasure of knowing her very well, but we were friendly and even ran on the same relay team earlier this summer. She always had a smile and friendly disposition. She will be forever missed.

But not only will she be missed, she will serve as a reminder to me that there may not be a tomorrow. There might not be a "later today" can all be gone in an instant.

If you've read my last few posts, you know that I've already been going through some tough internal struggles and this was like ice water being thrown on your face while you're sleeping. WTF?!?!?! It confirmed what I was already thinking...time to take those walls way down.

I already had started to chip away but this made me go back for a bigger sledge hammer. I will not let my fears dictate my life any longer. I will not take for granted those who love me and I will not follow in the footsteps of those who do. I want to be a better person than that. I want the people close to me to know how important they are and how much I care for them. I want them to know that they mean something and that I will not disregard our relationships for the guilty pleasures that taunt us from time to time. I know I'm not perfect, let me not cast stones!! I know that people have reasons for their actions, I've been there...and have dealt with consequences...sometimes they were worth it, sometimes not.

A lot of emotion flowed this weekend and although I cannot go into it all here, I know that because of the actions of others and the loss of a truly wonderful person...I am a changed woman. A better woman.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Hellooooo, Lover....

Let me introduce you to my new iPhone!! And I thought I'd never love again!! It's everything I could have asked understanding, intuitive and complete. The adjustment hasn't been 100% smooth (there's the issue of the keypad) but it's better than I could have asked. I am so happy.

I've been busy downloading my applications (first up: Facebook, Shazam, Urbanspoon) and getting my iTunes updated. I've taken pictures, set weather profiles for cities I've never been to, reset my settings a gillion times and am just having a blast getting to know it better.

iPhone, I LOVE you!!!!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Goodbye, Old Friend...

When you first entered my life I thought "how did I ever live without you?" We started out with such chemistry it was unbelievable. I began to think about you more and more. Then we would meet up at the trail for training runs and I was so grateful to have you on those long, hot and difficult runs. Eventually we started traveling together. It was blissful, fun and exciting. Even going out for mundane errands, you kept me grounded and calm.

Eventually, like most things...we began to drift apart. While I realized what was happening, I didn't want to admit it. I liked knowing you were always there, always ready to keep me steady - even if we had become but a mere convenience to each other.

I am forever going to miss you and what we once had.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Life Unfolded...

Sometimes you run yourself into a brick wall...fall down...rub your head and say, "what the hell?" And not as in "what the hell just happened" but more like "what the hell was I doing running full speed toward this wall and not doing anything to stop?"

So last week I hit the wall. I stumbled. And now I'm trying to figure out how to NOT run toward the wall again.

I started by looking back. A long way back. And it seems that I've been running into walls for a long time. Not exactly the kind of "hard-headed" that's looked at as favorable. It's more like the kind that keeps you from dealing with the demons that are lurking around your noggin'...the kind that keeps you in denial. But this time I inadvertently hurt someone else in the process...I did let someone down and have been doing it longer than I realized.

I came to this discovery of running into walls when I decided that I needed to do some cleansing and purging. I needed to feel like I was making progress at something. So I started cleaning out boxes. I will be moving soon and figured this would be very therapeutic as well as productive.

I got a little more than I bargained for!

My project uncovered several old journals dating back a good fifteen years. WOW! I couldn't help but to pause and read a few entries. A few turned into several, which turned into many and in the process brought a lot of those old demons out into the open. There they were, blocking my road to happiness and success - forming a gauntlet leading right to those walls I have forever been running into. I have never been able to push past them...much like my Ironman races, I try and I plan and I work real hard, but when push comes to shove - I fail.

The power of positive thinking has not exactly found its way into my life. Maybe I'm just such a late-bloomer that I just haven't gotten there yet. "Late-bloomer", that's a nice way of saying, "I just have never quite gotten my shit together". Anyhow, it can be true...I've never done anything early except get married...and we all know how well that turned out.

Is this too much rambling information?? Perhaps. But why should I hide behind it any longer. I screw up. I make mistakes. I battle self-doubt, need for acceptance by peers and family, fear of disappointing and rejection, painful feet from walking on egg shells and fears of success as failure is, unfortunately, far more familiar. I have hidden behind these things my whole life, letting them always get the best of me while trying so hard to put a happy and well-groomed face forward.

Am I unfolding my life in public to the possibility of judgment and criticism? Yes, I am.Why? Why now? Because I have to believe that I am not the only one who struggles with these or similar demons and I can't keep them looming overhead any longer. They must be banished. I have to free myself from my past.


p.s. I did clean out a bunch of crap and do feel a little better already...