Friday, August 8, 2014

Introducing Trainer

So much to cover...where to begin?

Attention.  I'm sure I've said it a million and twelve times; as a single-solo-parent, fully employed, full time college student...I'm fairly isolated on most social aspects.  ...so when attention gets thrown my way, I'm ALL FOR IT.

Enter Trainer. Before you start saying, "Seriously, SS, WTF is wrong with you?!" hear me out.

A few (read: six) months ago, I was in a valiant exercise kick.  Still being a solid 75lbs overweight (according to those stupid BMI chart demon monster things, I digress), I was giving it the ol' college try to make it to the gym on a regular basis. 

With a full semester of courses, and a consistent 40 hour work week, placing my physical fitness above spending what miniscule "free time" I had with my son felt selfish...but it was a selfish I was comfortable being (at that point in time).  What better thing for a selfish-determined-to-drop-two-jean-sizes lady to do then sign up for a fitness challenge.  It was your run of the mill challenge with an initial weigh-in, followed by weekly weigh-ins (the person losing the highest percentage of body fat winning some FABULOUS price...yadda yadda).

The day I signed up for the challenge I recall being in a particularly snarky mood.  When I'm in said-mood, I'm not particularly mean, but I'm also not particularly nice; sarcasm typically spews out of my mouth in brilliant ways that my inner-self snickers at because (OF COURSE).  My sarcasm did not disappoint, and to my surprise I was sitting across from Trainer, a fit man with kind eyes who was approximately the same height as me, and was returned with an equal amount of whitty sarcasm.

Be still my heart.

I became the cliched "girl who has a crush on her trainer."  Eff.

I have been doing a lot of life reflecting, and between you and me, I am doing my best to be authentic, and take in all things around me.  Life is short, and you truly never know how much time you'll have on this earthy, so my recent mantra is to enjoy every damn bit of it....and enjoying him has not proven to be a difficult task.  Quite the opposite.

In the beginning of my first 90-day challenge I was a rockstar.  I'm certain a lot of it was fueled by Trainer; although I can safely say the fire burning inside me was for the most part motivation to be healthy and Trainer was just a bonus.  Unfortunately the fire wasn't strong enough to keep me going, and mid-way through I dropped out.  I was embarrassed, frustrated, annoyed with my lack of time to do everything I was trying to do...so something had to go; and the gym was the easiest thing to cut in order to prevent an epic burnout.

About a month ago, I found a random email in my yahoo inbox from none other than Trainer.  A new challenge was on the brink of starting, and he was writing to recruit me.  Now, I'm REALLY not trying to get too far ahead of myself (yes, I've googled "does my trainer like me," and "I have a crush on my trainer," etc.), but I really DO feel a little connection with him.  However big or small that connection might FEEL, it doesn't change the fact that life is still nucking futs for me, and there was a flying chance in hell that I would sign up for another challenge....so I ignored his email.

Enter: bright idea.

Do you ever have one of those "awesome ideas" that you're only kind of serious about pursuing?  Yes?  No?  I have them all. the. time.

I opened my email, and composed the following to trainer:

Subject: I have a proposition for you...
Message:  Find me a date and I'll join the 90-day challenge.

Crazy email?  Absolutely.
Slightly inappropriate?  Yup.

I'm a girl who has very little shame in my game; and while all a part of me WISHED he'd say he found a date, setup a time at a local coffee shop for us to me, only to find out it was HIM he set me up on a date with...I knew better.

He takes his job very seriously; I can tell he's in his element...and it's refreshing as hell (not to mention super sexy). 

His response to my inappropriate email was pretty clever; "dates?  no problem...if you go to the grocery store, just ask one of the clerks which aisle to look in, and you'll have dates for days.  can't wait to see you come in to start your next 90-day!"

Touche', Trainer...Touche.

After a bit of email banter back and forth, he finally admitted to "having a lead on a date, but I'd have to come in to hear more."

My instant-mom-gut-reaction was B.S.....but if I've learned anything in my 31 years on this planet, it's that life is too short to harbor on "what-ifs" so OF COURSE I marched my overweight arse into the gym to find out if my leg was being pulled.

And pulled it was.  The look of sheer disappointment poured from each and every cell on my body, so much so that even Trainer commented on my sad puppy dog eyes....and, yes, I signed up for the stupid challenge. 

Trainer - 1.  Me - 0. 

In sitting there chatting with him, I realized how much I actually did miss the gym (I know, right?).  I also realized that my Trainer was far more serious about keeping this a business relationship...but when he mentioned that he was a gun safety certified while we were shooting the breeze, I couldn't help but tell him he had to make up his fib about a date to me by taking me shooting (note: shooting a gun has been on my bucket list for a while...).

And what do ya know...HE TOOK THE BAIT! (that makes me sound a bit predatorish, I digress).

What do you think the over-under is that this non-date date will actually happen?

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

The one with the angel.

Grief.  It's ugly, it's messy, and its damn near avoidable in this tangled web of life.  I'm thankful my periods of grief have been short lived, but recently a friend of mine has been tip-toeing through a forest of nasty grief I hope to never experience.

My friend lost her daughter to an 18-month battle of life.  See, my friend's little girl was born with down-syndrome, plus a host of other complications that required her to have numerous surgeries.  While I can imagine my friend and her husband made preparations in case their little girl didn't make it, I don't think there's any amount of preparing a person could do before losing a child.

Regardless of this little girl's health, she was still their baby.  Each simple milestone she accomplished in her short 18 months was nothing short of a miracle.  Every. Single. Time.

And though her last breath on earth was only about a month ago, my friend is still treading two feet below the surface in an ocean of grief...and that's ok.

At times I envy how freely she shares her grief and sorrow; to the point where I've busted myself questioning her...but who in the hell am I to question something I've never experienced (thank god).  Although, one comment that keeps being repeated is "other people don't understand."  This is in response to her feeling of people "expecting her to go back to normal."  I imagine this is the furthest thing from the truth; let's think about that.  "Normal" is such an ambiguous word....and it wouldn't be fair of ANYONE to expect her to act or feel happy.  She lost her baby; it's a pain that's so wretched nobody can even pretend like they know what she's going though (unless they, themselves have lost a child).

I think what's happening is, because people can't relate or empathize, they feel like it would be most helpful if THEY pretended like nothing was wrong; like the death of her baby isn't a huge elephant in the room.  Sure, in writing that sounds a bit ignorant and silly; but how else can a person who hasn't experienced the same grief really act?  I'm sad that her family is experiencing such a horrible loss, and I'm also hopeful that, even in the wake of her criticisms, the people who are surrounding her don't abandon her because she's annoyed and/or feels like everyone should expect her to act "normal."  She will need each and every person more than ever....even if it's just to sit there while she cries.  

Thursday, February 13, 2014

My moment

How does a person cope when they feel like is just too damn busy?  Me....I get irritable and the inevitable unveils itself in the form of ugly crying.  On my way to the gym after work yesterday, I felt it bubbling in the pit of my stomach; sheer and utter irritability.  My mind began to race; work (which isn't going the greatest), school (I'm only one week into the semester), parenting (I feel like a complete failure and disconnected from my son), my non-fitness level (I'm about 100lbs overweight, and can't seem to see the light at the end of the fitness tunnel), dating (why in the hell is dating/relationships so flipping complicated), money (the fact that I DON'T HAVE ANY REGARDLESS OF HOW HARD I WORK)....all these thoughts bubbling in my stomach like the calm before the storm.

To help refocus, I tried to only focus on the small group work out I was heading to.  I raced through the gym doors, and had made some pretty great time managing to ONLY be five minutes late.  Do I think the workout helped?  Considering I ugly cried at my locker after the workout, I'd answer with a "maybe."

My heart is screaming at me to be patient; this is only temporary, and focus on the good stuff (DAMMIT).  Then my head enters the room...and my head is a royal bitch.  Quieting my head has got to be the key to my success, and what better way to quiet the screams then dive head-first into loads of work (that I'm expected to do in the first place).

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And on a slightly separate note, I am so ready for this crappy winter to be over.  This mama needs the sun back, and clear roads to walk around at night....birds, flowers and green grass help a bit too.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Beating my negative self

You're not good enough.
What guy would want you?
You're too fat.
You're going to be alone and that's just the way it is.

The affirmations listed above had been permeating my very being for a loooooooong time (like, since as far back as I can remember).  I honestly think turning 30 allowed me to challenge those negative affirmations that had been haunting me; particularly because I had not fulfilled two of my large life goals (graduating from college and being married) before my age ticked out of my 20's. 

Twice in a month, my son told me he wanted me to date.  How does a girl go into the dating world when negative mantras are repeated regularly?  Answer: She doesn't.

Something gave, more specifically the second time he mentioned his desire for mama to start dating.  Sure, I've given the wonderful world of relationships an elementary effort in the years since becoming a mom....but never really had given it a good college try.

This time has been different.  This time, these are the mantra's I've been constantly repeating (while looking in the mirror):

Damn I look good.
Hello there!  You get'm girl.
YOU CAN DO THIS.
You deserve to have fun.
You deserve to be treated like a princess.

Monday, January 27, 2014

The one where I realize life is pretty damn good.

I'm nearing the end of my 30th year of life.  In two short weeks, I'll turn 31 and no longer be considered a 30 year old, rather, a 30-something.  If you can't tell, I hadn't been all too excited.

As I faced exiting my 20's last year, I was a debbie-downer because I was still single, out of shape, blah blah blah; and as I vented my concerns to friends, the response I kept hearing was unanimous. 


"Being 30 has been the best so far."

The statement was far too abstract for my over-analytical mind to fully comprehend...until a few weeks ago when I was overcome with a mini-epiphany; being 30 actually was pretty kick ass.  In the past 11 months, I've taken an awesome trip to Las Vegas, spent time doing things that charge my battery (like digging in my gardens), gone on some mini road trips, shared some hilarious moments with friends, was the shoulder for other friends to cry on when life felt rough, purchased a chicken coop (but have yet to get birds), leaned on other friends when I thought life felt rough, taught my son how to ice skate (among many other awesome memories we created), and just acted like me (without the stress or anxiety of "messing things up"). 

My fresh, care-free perspective also lead me to re-activate a membership with an online dating website.  I've even met a man from the site, and to be honest, I'm currently smitten.  I can't help but ask myself; are things working out because I've FINALLY decided to let go of the majority of my insecurities....or is life finally deciding it's high time to start working like a well-oiled machine?  I suppose I'll never have a concrete answer, but dammit I'm bound and determined to enjoy the ride.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

First 2nd Date of 2014

After my son told me (on two separate occasions, mind you) that all he wanted was for me to date someone, I couldn't resist dusting off my dating cobwebs, and re-committing to an online dating subscription.  Why online dating?  When you are on a budget, are a 100% solo parent (meaning my son is with me 24/7), work full time, and am still in college full time all I can squeeze into my schedule is some online flirting with the hopes that one of the more attractive male subscribers will be interested enough in my quirky online-self to setup a date (could I write a longer sentence?!). 
I have going for me what almost every other over weight girl has going for them; I've got a great personality.  Almost in a depressing way.  Depressing because I feel like I'm so much more than just a great personality, but then mirrors and wobbly bits enter the picture, and they hide me from the sexy great guys.

I recently went on two dates with a 32 year old single father.  He has two boys, blonde hair, blue eyes, is beyond hot...and did I mention he's super in shape?  We've been out twice; the first time meeting for wine and spending three hours talking.  The second time was initiated by me (at the end of our first date).  We went to a comedy club and had a few drinks.  It was nice.  He's nice; to look at, to talk with. 

There's a little demon inside of me nagging "he's out of your league! what are you doing?! he must just be a nice guy, too nice to say he's not interested." 

I don't know how to break away from my negative cycle of self doubt.  At the end of the second date there was no kiss.  I bit my tongue to see if he was into me at the end of our date, and no, he didn't setup another time for us to see each other.  My (rather large and wobbly) gut is telling me he's just not that into me.  I want to accept it, and I have accepted it, but damn that's a depressing thing to do.  I feel like he's not into me because I'm not fit....and not in a shallow way either.  I believe he's such a great guy that he literally deserves a woman who is as cool as me, but looks like a barbie.  As cool as I am, I'm never going to be a barbie...hell, I wasn't even a barbie before I had my son (and getting pregnant living solo and fighting off mental demons the past eight years has certainly expanded my waste line in ways I wish it hadn't). 

What's a girl to do?

Thursday, January 2, 2014

A year in review

I am not quiet about the fact that I really didn't like the year 2013.  Most of it was a headache.  Drama-filled.  Stressful.  Is it really fair of me to blame 365 days on a number?  Meh, probably not fair, rational or reasonable...but it's what I'm doing (and I'm not feeling the least bit guilty about it).  Then again, is it more appropriate to blame the past 365 days on me?  The stress, drama-induced grossness on the fact that I really never took the time to really dig deep and figure who I am, what I want and where I want to be.

The next 365 days I want to dedicate to just that.  Digging deep.  Holding myself accountable for life.  Slowing down (a LOT).  Making sure my time spent is well spent and spewing with high amounts of quality. 

A person I know shared words of his friend.  Words that are the epitome of digging deep.  Words I am going to do my best to live by for the next 365 days:

"A resolution is a “firm determination”. It’s a firm decision to do something or to refrain from doing something. It’s a determination of an action. And why do we fail to keep these resolutions? Because the desire for change isn’t a strong enough force to bring about lasting change. Desire is only part of the puzzle. And actions disconnected from belief and conviction are empty motions that may build your reputation but do nothing for your character. Desire comes from the heart. Conviction comes from the soul. Belief is harbored in the mind. And actions are simply our bodies outward expression of what the rest of our Self is saying. If you want to experience true change entertain my list of 14 New Years resolutions for 2014. None are actions, but your actions might be shaped if you’re willing to let them be. 1. Know that you can Give even when it’s not the Holiday season. FYI: People are NOT in greater need in December. There are 11 other months and endless opportunities to Give throughout year. 2. Be humble. Stand at the foot of a mountain, at the edge of the ocean, or in the middle of a forest and ask yourself,”What did I do to contribute to this creation?” Hint: The answer is “Nothing”. You’re not that big of a deal. 3. Believe that your self-worth is not rooted in the number of “likes” you get. 4. Believe that WHO you are is more important that what you own, where you live, or what you drive. 5. Listen to your soul before you listen to your heart. How can you tell the difference? You typically don’t really want to do what your soul is whispering to you. And your heart often screams louder than your better judgment. 6. Know that health isn’t measured by numbers and isn’t achieved by pills. 7. Know that Hope doesn’t cost a thing. But it’s the best investment. 8. Understand the difference between “being known” and “being famous”. Our soul wants one and our heart wants another. Try to figure out which wants which. 9. Know that there is a fine line and a huge difference between confidence and arrogance. 10. Believe that phone calls and conversations are more powerful than Tweets and Posts. 11. Believe that someone else can learn from your biggest mistake. 12. Know that you can’t effectively care for someone you think less of. If you serve someone you think less of, you’re only serving yourself. Work hard to dignify those you serve. 13. Commit to seeing the potential in someone before seeing the problems. 14. Believe in the power of presence. Show up more. May 2014 bring you more opportunities to do good. May we all look to live beyond ourselves and have the courage to change the world within us before the world around us."

Cheers!