Monday, October 29, 2018

Rainy days and Mondays . . .

Actually I really like rainy day and I'm not a part of the all Monday's suck crew, unless I hate my job then Mondays are the worst.  So then what the hell am I trying to say here?  A friend posted the other day some meme about remembering that some people would kill for your bad days so watch yourself kinda thing and it got me thinking about bad days.

When it comes to social media, I try to keep it real.  If I have a "bad day" then I will post about it.  Not to get sympathy but to keep it real and to try to reach out and connect.  So many people post only about their wonderful lives and never about their dark days.  There are times that it makes me feel awful and jealous to see all the wonderfulness in everyone else's life and wonder what the hell I'm doing wrong that my life isn't like that.  That is when I have to check myself.  To remind myself that they are posting the good to celebrate and celebrate they should but also posting your dark days is considered a bad thing to do.  We are suppose to hide our bad day, our struggle, and be ashamed to need help.  When we only post the good stuff then those people who struggle fall deeper into the shame spiral.  What am I doing wrong because everyone I know is having a great life?  I must be broken because I have bad days.

Here is some truth from me.  I have bad days and I have every right to feel bad on those days.  Yes I am blessed.  Yes there are people who would love to have my bad days but guess what I still have the right to my bad days! 

I am blessed beyond measure.  I know this but I don't always feel this.  I have a good marriage.  I have two amazing children.  My parents are alive and supportive.  I have decent in-laws.  I have an amazing career.  I know I am blessed. 

I still get to have bad days.  You don't have the right to tell me to feel better now because your day was worse or you know someone who has it worse.  There are days when DH and I feel completely disconnected when it feels like the work of marriage is too much.  Or the days my children get me up at 4am for the umpteeth time in a row and I can't think straight.  I have had days when I'm stuck in one town 3 hours away from my dad while he is undergoing cancer treatment and I just want to go be supportive but I don't have either the time or the money to make the trip.  The two weeks dad was in the hospital and we weren't sure he was going to survive were bad days.  Just because you have to worse doesn't mean that I don't get to have bad days.

This is not a bad days competition.  You can ignore me or you can type something supportive but people don't tell me it could be worse.  Don't tell me about your other friend who is having a worse day so that I can feel better.  I will feel better.  I know I will but in that moment of struggle I am reaching out and trying to connect and let others know that while yes I am blessed, I too struggle.  We all struggle.  WE ALL STRUGGLE!  There is no shame in the struggle.  Don't be afraid to reach out.  Just because we all struggle doesn't mean your struggle is less than mine or that you should be ashamed that my struggle could be worse so you shouldn't say anything.  You have a right to your bad days.  You have a right to feel bad.  You have a right to reach out and post about it. 

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Half-Mary Done

Today I ran a half-mary.  Not a race but 13.1 miles and just a touch more since I had to walk back to my car so 13.31 total.  2 weeks ago I ran 12 miles with my friend from high school and it was a total disaster!  It took us over 3 and half hours and my ankle was killing me so I couldn't actually run after 7 miles.  It was so hot and I started off too fast.  It was also on the road, which really killed my ankle.

I gave myself last weekend off.  I started a new job and wasn't sure about barely being able to walk after trying to run a half-mary. 

Today I set myself for success.  I picked an outdoor track that would be nice to my ankle.  I ran in the morning so it wouldn't get too hot.  I got it all done in just under 3 hrs and 10 minutes.  I smashed that 12 mile time!  My ankle did well.  I'm tired and sore but not so much that I can't move, just moving a bit slow.
The Nac Half is in a few weeks Nd despite hearing it is super hilly, if time allows I want to run it.  But even if that doesn't happen I am still going to keep training up to a marathon.  I really believe I can get one done before my 40th birthday.  So onward and upward!

Friday, October 26, 2018

New job and less family time

I got a job.  Y'all not just a job but the opportunity of a lifetime!  I'm the director of library services at a HBCU!  I love it.  I'm only 5 days in and things are really falling into place.  I'm making callings getting services back online and feeling like I've been reborn in my career.  So far there is only one draw back: I'm commuting close to 2 hours.

I'm not a big fan of driving but it's not the first time I've had a long commute so I don't really mind.  The problem is the lack of family time.  DH also started a new full time job on Monday and he is working 3-11 daily with Thursday and Friday off.  I'm leaving the house around 6am to be at work by 8am and then not getting back until 7pm.  My off days are Saturdays and Sunday so as you can see that is not leaving anytime with DH and my time with my girls is down to about 2-3 hours per day since I have to head to bed around 9.  Of course Baby Lala is asleep at about that time but I'm down to 2 hours with her and Gymgirl where I had been home 24/7 for close to 3 months. 

We are all adjusting.  We all know it is a big sacrifice.  When I was offer the position, I really had to stop and think about it.  The salary is bit of bump from my last job but the opportunity is worth so much more.  It means jumping into the world of Academic Libraries, which I had been struggling to do.  Basically no one wanted to hire me with very little Academic Library experience but since I had lots of supervisory experience this college was excited to scoop me up.  I've gone from feeling like the ugly duckling to a beautiful swan.  Everyone is so supportive and really pushing to help students learn! 

Of course that means less time to blog but I'll do better about writing every few weeks unlike with the old job that didn't leave time or energy for anything.  I think that is one of the biggest differences.  I leave this job tired but energized.  I love what I do.  I'm confident in what I'm doing.  I don't second guess myself as much.  I'm making it home and I'm making a difference.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Miscarriage and Assigned Soul

October is Infant and Pregnancy Loss Month.  I've written in a past blog post about losing a pregnancy about 2 years after Gymgirl was born.  If you do the math, there are almost exactly 7 years between my girls.  That was not my plan but that is what happened.  I love my rainbow baby, Baby Lala, but I still think about the one lost between.  To say I spent 9 months terrified I was going to lose the pregnancy is an understatement. 

We have been watching Bones.  DH got GymGirl and I into it.  There was an episode with Cyndi Lauper as a psychic and she was helping a soul cross over.  In that episode, she mentioned to the soul, who was a young teen, all about the life he would have had including 2 children that will now have to find a new way here.  I asked DH if he thought that was the way it worked.  Do we get assigned our best life and then between free will and life itself it turns into other things?  He said yep something like that.  "Then what about the soul we lost?  Was it Lala or someone else? Will he find a new way here?"

Is that the way it works?  Was I tasked with bringing a certain number of souls across and failed at some point?  See the loss is great and doesn't go away.  So much potential, life changing, world saving energy just gone?  If energy isn't created or destroyed then that soul is still around and will find a new way here. 

I'm sure how souls work.  I just know I still the loss.  I have a couple of friends who in recent month have dealt with pregnancy loss.  They have been super open and honest on Facebook about it.  I'm so proud of then.  When I had my miscarriage, we didn't tell anyone for months and only because I had written the blog post.  There was so much shame, like I was a failure as a woman.  I know that wasn't and isn't true.  Only God knows the master plan and I'll just be patient and have faith. 

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Poverty Paradox

Have you ever looked into joining a "service organization"?  Around here we have Jr. League, Rotary, and Kiwanis, maybe others too but those are the big ones.  In high school, I was a member of Interact, the high school version of Rotary.  These organizations do great work for all types of people and places in our community.   This is not a knock against any of them just an interesting observation.

I recently pulled out of joining the Jr. League because I didn't have the money to join.   The fees were only $125 but that is actually a lot of money for some people,  like me.  Rotary was way more money,  something in the neighborhood of $1000. I have no clue about Kiwanis but im sure they have a membership fee as well.  Of course upit can't forget the required volunteer hours and fundraisers .which you will be expected to buy/spend money on as well. Again,  they do great work and that requires money.

Why join them?   Well it is for networking along with helping in your community.   If you are a new business person then you want/need those connections. Now think if you are a person trying to better your life,  ie get out of poverty, you need connections and networking opportunities. The people in leadership positions in those organizations basically get their businesses "free" press with each project.  They are in the newspaper or TV news all the time.   Think of all of that exposure!  Now think about the membership fee, can you drop that money? 

I honestly can't at the moment.   God willing I'll join Jr. League next year but what about other poor people who want and need the advantages of service organizations?   I find it ironic that the organizations work to end poverty or improve lives but de facto bar the people they claim to help by not having a scholarship or trading
volunteer hours for membership fees option.  

Those organizations don't advertise much as far as growing their numbers.  They are basically you gotta know someone type of thing.  You get invited or your job forces you to go.  Those of us who grew up in poverty didn't have parents running off to Rotary so it isn't really something we think to look for.  Let's be real, they are "White" savior organizations, or at least they were.  The branches around here are getting increasingly more diverse.  As younger generations take over leadership, they are pushing for diversity.  Maybe the scholarships exist if you know the right people.  You personally have a connection and they give you the secret scholarship or membership fee discount.   Again,  it is about who you know.  You have to be in the right crowd to get access to the right crowd,  not so helpful if you are just starting out.

Monday, October 1, 2018

10 miles later

So I did it; I ran 10 miles yesterday!  I felt so lonely, so worthless, so invisible; it was as either run or die.  
Not that I would have actually killed myself but I would have done something self destructive, like 
pull all of my applications or sent an ugly email to the job interview people.

Running is good therapy for me.  It takes a lot of energy to get started and crap-ton 
of will to keep going after the first interval.  But I don't know if it is a runner's high or just my body
 thinking it is closer to death about halfway thru I'll settle in and enjoy the run.

Yesterday miles 6, 7, 8 I actually had negative splits!  Meaning they were my fastest miles and honestly 
it is difficult to get faster in the middle of a long run,  for me anyway. The longer I run the better I feel 
until I'm pushing myself into a new longer distance. By the end of mile 8 (which was my previous 
longest distance) I really felt awesome. I was ready to grab life by the balls and be a total badass.  
Then my mood took a turn around 8.5 miles, I started feeling a tiredness in my legs that took over 
my thoughts. I tried breathing thru the pain. It took everything thing in me to finish. I had to give myself 
permission to slow down. I reminded myself that starting sub-13 min wasn't important,  I just needed to 
accomplish my goal and I could crawl if I needed to.

I didn't need to crawl.  I was hurting and unfortunately my mind had settled back into a negative 
state but at least I could shut that negative voice down a little easier; I mean I am a badass that 
ran 10 miles!  Surely a loser can't do that, right?

Anyways,  a half marathon is really well within my grasp. The race I'm targeting isn't until 
November so still a full month of training.  I'll keep adding miles and that change from awesome
 to suck will hopefully move out further and further so that I'm strong at mile 13.1.  
We'll see how it goes!