My last child is swimming in a sea of his lasts which for him is very exciting. I’ve had several years of lasts as my daughter graduated and moved on to college and then my oldest son who followed suit but they were never THE LAST ONE. There was always more in the younger ones. My last one is reveling in his last Raynwater show, his last Boy Scout Meeting, his last everything. For me, as his mom, this is like eating tacks. Every last is like someone is ripping a piece of me out of my soul and leaving me with what feels like a gaping hole. The happy thing is that he’s going to be living at home while he goes to college so I’ll still see him and he’ll still be hanging around in his messy room that sort of makes me smile through my gritted teeth daily. I feel like I’m all alone dreading all these things that were landmarks to me when I did them. My mom never cried as I left or dreaded my graduation or felt sad as I moved on. My mom is not me. Today as I scrolled through Facebook I came across a post of a woman’s hand holding a paper bag and it caught my eye. I read it even thought it didn’t pertain to me because well………….SQUIRREL!
This is what it read:
Maria Stephanos WCVB
This probably is just a paper lunch bag to you, to me it’s a bag full of years of memories and moments. This is the last school lunch I’ll ever make for my kids. (Yes, I’m a Greek mother and I loved making my kids lunches. When you work at night for their entire lives it’s the little things like this that I think make a difference) My son graduates next week and my daughter is Junior in College. And so begins this part of life. HOW DID IT GO BY SO FAST???? I look forward to what’s next and am filled with love and gratitude that I got to make a million lunches. Every time I walk by a mother holding her child’s hand I just want to stop them and say stop right there and feel your child’s hand and take in this simple moment. Drink it in because before you know it, you will be making your last school lunch. ❤
BOOM! I don’t remember meeting Maria even though I watch her on TV every day but boy did she hit my nail on the head hard! So to the rest of you reading this who might wonder why the fuck am I freaking out? Well, to you he’s just a kid like many others who go through this all the time. To you, he’s James the funny happy video game playing kid who is loved by all. To me, he’s my last everything. He’s my last child and the end of my daily purpose. There’s no more lunches to make after him. My job is over . Every lunch was made with love even the ones I made for his friends. All the lunches I ever made were made for my kids because I love them, never to save money. I am a creature who needs to be needed. What happens now? Who will need me now that they are off to do their lives that no longer need me to help keep them organized? What happens now that I’m watching all these lasts? When I get to that last lunch what then? When you have spent 22 years buried in your kids lives it becomes the thing you know, the only thing you know and the daily habit that life and the world just expects you to break overnight and get over. What if that thing brings you joy and light to your life and thinking about it going away gives you tremendous anxiety and dread. Well that’s me and that’s where I’m at. I feel like I’m going to disappear. I have no choice but to move on because life doesn’t wait around for you but somewhere deep inside where I don’t share with anyone, I’m sad and I feel like a big piece of swiss cheese full of holes. Oh I’ll take pictures and smile, cry and laugh but it’s over and it’s like a wonderful book, a fairy tale and romance novel and action story all rolled up into one that you could never put down. It was so good and will afford me so many stories to tell forever and ever and yes there will be more to come but not like the ones that are just about over. Your kids are only little for a short time. Enjoy it. Let them spill things and cry and splash in the puddles because it eventually comes to a bittersweet end. Make memories with them, tell them daily that you love them and never forget how much joy they have brought you. I love you Katy, John and James!
I’m going to lose my shit, I just am. I’m trying hard to be a “big girl” but honestly it’s just not working! My Wingman and my youngest child James, is graduating High School in a few weeks. Here come the tears. Raynwater wraps up for the last time on Saturday, then James earns his Eagle Scout rank, then it’s prom and then graduation. This is the last time for all of those things! OMG it’s over in as much as it’s a beginning and I’m beginning to get choked up everywhere I go. During runs, in the car, sitting here typing, in the shower, it doesn’t matter where. I feel like I want one more year, just one! I want to scream like Ren at the train for life to slow down because I can’t keep up and part of me just doesn’t want to. I think of what’s to come and I worry that it will be entirely too empty. What now? Yesterday I went to James All Scholastic Awards where he was honored for Wrestling and got to meet Jerod Mayo the former New England Patriots linebacker who gave an unbelievable speech to the kids.
We’ve started on the first of the lasts and I am feeling sad. Last Raynwater show, next it’s his Eagle Scout pinning then it’s his last prom and then he graduates from High School. I wish I were a stronger person but I am not. I feel as though I’m on a train racing to lonliness and I really don’t want to live there. If I could keep my kids here forever I really would but sadly I can’t and wouldn’t ever rob them of their moments and their time. The quiet of my house is worse than any horror movie I’ve ever seen and it’s getting louder every day. The up side to my fear of being alone / not needed is that I see things in my kids that tell me it will be ok. Hearing and seeing them is like taking an ibuprofen for a headache….it makes it go away and I’m ok. Watching James do all these things makes me so proud. He’s found himself and is on his way to his life in his way and on his terms. Amazing!
So as I feel sad I feel happy. These feelings driven by this fear is necessary and needed in my life. It’s good to learn to cope with change. It’s good to fear and overcome. It’s good to find happiness and joy in sadness. it’ helps us grow and makes us stronger and better people. It makes me run faster actually LOL. I will be fine once it’s all over and I’ve adjusted to the new normal. What will I do with myself? What will I do with my new relationship oppty with my husband? What things can I now do for me that I couldn’t before? These are exciting questions that I will begin exploring in my new normal. It’s kind of exciting.
This 30 degree morning shit has to go! You know what else has to go? My lazy ass “I don’t want to go out in the cold” attitude! A year ago I was out in 30 degrees and also in 25 degrees without thinking twice about it. These days I just don’t want to do it and in fact I’ll go two days with no workout over just layering up and heading out. Boy my workout routine is back to 0 so it’s at the starting block again because I got lazy. That to me is UNACCEPTABLE.
What’s UNACCEPTABLE is also the weather! Where in the hell is Spring anyway? Usually by now mornings are at least pushing 45-50 which is way better than 33 or below. I’m not sure what the heck Mother Nature is thinking but we’re all done with her little temper tantrum freezing spring episode. The crocus are horrified, I’m freezing and I’ve found 20lbs that I had lost. I watch my husband who has had a burst of energy to stay fit doing his 100 pushup a day challenge and I know I’d struggle right now to do more than 10. I might have even slipped back to the realm of girlie pushups from my knees.
Learning to cut what I’m eating again is also UNACCEPTABLE. With fewer workouts, the amount of calories I can consume is much less but my brain is still on the “it’s ok to take a bite here and a bite bite there” mentality from the days of working out every single day for like 45 days without a rest day. I need to get back to that and I will soon enough because I’m hell bent on getting there. I feel like I should be wearing this hoodie around until I get back to where I want to be! I love @RealBluntBlonde ! Sometimes crass but always funny as hell and pretty much says what we’re all thinking as we strive for tight butt cheeks! You can actually buy this shirt at the Chubby Girl Fitness Store HERE.
Although I am bitching about this over resting, my body probably is appreciating it. In the last 7 years I’ve really hit the workout scene hard. It’s helped me physically cope with some pretty fucked up shitty stressful moments. It’s helped me mentally work through things. It’s helped me plug myself back into society. It’s helped me find good friends and most of all it’s helped me find me. That is ACCEPTABLE because I spent a really long time lost and nearly let it all just have me. My body absorbed so much stress and took such a beating that as fat as I’m feeling right now and as gross as I look compared to the much fitter me a year or so ago, my body is getting rest. I’m 48 soon to be 49 years old. My head feels 25 but I know my body can’t be treated the way my mind feels. Not exactly anyway. It needs to be rested more and stressed hard less. I know this down time is good for me. Maybe God made winter awful this year to help me rest. I’d like to think that’s what it is even if it isn’t. I just miss going at it every day but I’ll get back there soon.
So now I’ve seen a cardiologist and had an ultrasound of my guts. As it turns out, it’s not my heart which I knew and apparently I have gall stones which they don’t do anything for unless they act up. So unless my little pain issue comes back, I’m all done seeing specialists and having tests. I pretty much figured this was how it was going to end up anyway but better to be sure than sorry right? So it’s back to working out better and more for me. Priority one is some mad core work because I haven’t put any time in on that at all in the last month. I can feel it when I’m running and I don’t like it. This stupid winter has killed me in terms of running and working out but even though its snowing now, I got a run in this morning and hopefully that will be the beginning of a kicking spring if ever it shows up. With the all clear I head out looking for a better me for the rest of 2018.
Once they get their hands on you they make like you’re a pin cushion. I went to the Dr’s because of my little chest pain incident because they insisted on it. They hooked me up to an EKG which took longer to set up than to do the test itself. The doctor did not like the time between functions of each of the four sections of my heart. Now I have to go for a cardiac consult and an abdominal ultrasound to look at my hernia and gall bladder to determine if either one is the cause of this weird thing that’s happened only 3 times now in like 10 years. The cardiac consult will determine if I need a monitor for 48 hours or for 30 days. I’d rather 48 hours because if I show up at my mothers house all strapped up it will be chaos for nothing. I don’t think even a 30 day monitor is going to be any good since it’s like 3 years between incidents. I feel like at the end of all this testing that they are going to just say “well we don’t know what the issue is so call us if it happens again.” All this time off work to go for testing will be for nothing too. So what did I do Friday after she laid all this on me? Went for a 3 mile run keeping my splits between 9:45 and 9:55. See! I’m fine and it’s nothing but one of those unexplainable things in life like why the wind sometimes abruptly changes directions or something like that. It’ll probably remain a mystery that I’ll die without an answer for. I eat healthy, exercise regularly, get plenty of rest, drink lots of water and am in pretty good health for an almost 49 year old. I’ll be surprised if anything comes of all of this but here’s to hoping someone sees something that will put the questions and worry in everyone’s heads to rest. Till I find out either way, I’m running and working out as always.
I hate fat Brenna. Since this effing winter set in I havev cut back on the two-fer workouts that I was doing, started picking when I’m cooking, eating large calorie snacks and not just one snack….like 3! It’s no big deal I tell myself but my waist tells me it’s a big deal. My scale confirms that I’m slowing down and fat Brenna is closing the gap. No Bueno! It was no Bueno when I was down to 150 lbs and still losing while running and running and running. That’s as dangerous as slowing all that shit down. Where the fuck is my happy medium??!! I feel like success is found ing the extremes but it’s unhealthy success. So today I feel like I had a much better success in eating. Bowl of Rasin Bran for breakfast and I didn’t drink all the milk. Break was a bunch of granola which isn’t super awesome but I didn’t have it with yogurt, a banana and maybe another snack so that’s a breakthrough. no other snacks. I got home and did 50 minutes of light core exercise then 34 minutes of light bike riding on the stationary. Now what to make for dinner….. hmmm I could eat leftover chicken and make stir fry…too much work. Now I’m leaning to another bowl of cereal merely out of convenience. Why doesn’t anyone ever cook anything for me? So the container of steel cut oats that I bought for overnight oats practically threw themselves at me. OH! What a good idea that sounded like so I split the liquid between water and milk and added vanilla (smart right?) and I did cook two servings but that’s only a cup… who the hell can survive the night on a half a cup of steel cut cooked oats anyway? So blah! So what can I do to make this better? Well first this apple propositioned me to be the fun in my dinner. Ok, that sounds good. Then what goes with apples I ask? Why Cinnamon and a packet of splenda of course! Now that hit the spot and maybe it will hit the spot in the morning too. So day 1 of new eating habits seemed to be a success. One day at a time. Next I need to look at my weight training and see where improvements can be made. I might have to resort to Youtube to find something fun and fast that makes me sweat my ass off. I’m a big fan of non sweating light weight many reps kind of stuff. I don’t want to build muscle just tone. I’m going to have to do different stuff to whip it into shape I think. Time to roll up the sleeves and punch fat Brenna right in the mouth and extend the gap again! I’m going to…..
There’s just something about running that makes you feel amazing. It’s like putting on Iron Man’s suit and taking on the bad guys! It doesn’t matter the day or time. It doesn’t matter what day of the week either, it just gives me this crazy powerful feeling when I run. Now truth be told, it does matter if you just ate or what time of the day only matters if it’s after work because all that food and sitting has built up so it’s harder but it still feels awesome. It matters if you’re sick or tired or sick and tired. It matters if you’re doing something hard like stupid hills. Yes, there are a lot of things that do matter and effect the overall mental success of a run but in general running makes me happy and strong. Maybe I have just missed running a lot lately. The winter this year sucked! I couldn’t get outside to run much at all outside the few times I went out in the freezing cold. I wasn’t a fan of the cold running this year for whatever reason. I also didn’t always get to the gym. My core workouts dropped significantly making any outside running I was able to get in, extra hard. It was super cold and gross out and overall I am happy to be on the downside of winter. When I finish an outside run I feel a little invincible like some bad ass but not really like Zena warrior princess /Lara Croft Tomb Raider combo. Being a whole lot less girlie than most women, I would rather say I feel like a combination between Kaulder the last Witch Hunter (yep I did like that movie as corny as it was) and Jack Reacher who is just an awesome bad ass…. maybe throw a little Jason “I refuse to die” Bourne in there for good measure. What can I say, I’ve never been a powder puff girl. S0me days when I finish a run I feel like there should be bad ass music playing letting everyone know that I have completed yet another amazing task that no other mortal being in my relative vacinity has dared to attempt. I feel like Thor looking around for someone….anyone like “hey Bitch, that’s right! ‘m a runner” Now this of course is a far cry from the sweaty aching out-of-breath and sometimes hamstring throbbing body that shows up in my driveway but hey a girl can use her imagination can’t she!? I realize that my meager 3 mile average these days is minute in the grand scheme of accomplishments but I don’t care. They are my 3 miles and I”m proud of every one!
How does running make you feel and which superhero action character would you choose to represent you when you run?