Wednesday, April 29, 2009


The YMCA that I belong to is set up in a really interesting way. The bank of treadmills is positioned so that they face floor to ceiling windows that overlook the pool. Ah, the pool. When I’m not actually in the pool, I find this to be the next best place to be. I enjoy the distraction. I love watching the old women with their short, white hair, parade confidently down the length of the pool, looking for open lanes, space to spread out. They slide their strong bodies into the comforting and healing waters. There is nothing to slow them down in the pool, no arthritis, no joint pains, no swollen hips, the pool is their fountain of youth.

Today I watched a young mother enter the pool area with her two young children in tow. She was in her late 30’s and looked like the kind of mom who actually played with her kids. She looked like a get-your-hands-dirty, roll-on-the-front-lawn kind of mom. She was not a size 2 in a string bikini, but that’s what’s wonderful about a YMCA swimming pool, you never see bikinis because the women using it are there for themselves, not to impress anyone else.

So there she was, leaning down into the pool. Her legs were strong and fit but her stomach wasn’t flat, she had lumps and imperfections like everyone but she didn’t seem to even notice. She was the picture of health and happiness. She was wearing a bright red Speedo, the kind you wear for a purpose, to actually swim, to jump and dive and splash in. You wear these bathing suits for comfort and functionality, the kind of bathing suits you wore before you were even aware of your own body. Her whole body was solid, the kind of woman who would run a mile for fun, jump in a pool at a pool party because it was hot, wear her hair lose and messy because it saved time. She can keep up with the boys and be proud of the things she can accomplish with her strength and endurance.

These are the kind of women we want young girls looking up to and aspiring to be like. The kind of women who exercise because of the way it makes them feel, healthy and strong, not because it helps them fit into size 6 jeans. It is refreshing to see strong, active women and it inspires me to continue living my life in accordance with these core values. I want to be that young mother, and someday, those older women. I want to put all my energy into every day and sleep peacefully at night, exhausted from the pursuits of my day and the force I breathe into my life.

A Pregnant Pause

I find myself marveling at all the pregnant bellies I have seen lately. I feel like a baby who has just discovered her hands. It is just amazing that we, as women, carry around a human life inside our bodies! It just completely astounds me. And yet, I am not pregnant, have never been pregnant and the only close experience I had with pregnancy was my sisters and she delivered three and half months prematurely and was on bed rest (god bless her) for most of the time. So I didn’t get to experience, vicariously through her, of course, the constant kicks, the ever-expanding belly and the tiny feet finding themselves stuck under ribs (yes! This happens!...or so I’ve been told).

No, I don’t have baby fever (well, maybe a little), but I am in no way ready to be a mom. I am merely finding myself in a state of wonder about the whole pregnancy process. I look at my mom and can’t help thinking, “She carried me, in her stomach, for nine months!”

I’m sure this wonder and amazement will pass. It is but a fleeting thought. I am at that stage in life (30…gasp!) where many, many girls I grew up with are having children. Facebook seems to be a constant notification device of the babies that are being born left and right. Okay, maybe I do have a bit of baby fever. And while I love the thought of having a cuddly, squishy, soft, sweet baby of my own, I’m not ready for being up all night with a sleepless tot or changing diapers more frequently than blinking. For now I am going to enjoy my sleep, my flat stomach and the freedom to go for a run at a moment’s notice. But when that day comes, you can bet I am going to be spending hours staring at my own expanding belly and wondering, “How in the world…”


We are haunted by our fears every day. They come climbing into the inner recesses of our mind when we least expect it. What are our fears except extensions of our selves? For as long as I can remember, I have feared making the wrong decision, the wrong move, the wrong choice. To calm my worries, people would often say, "There is no right or wrong." But this did not soothe my nerves. I want to believe in fate and everything happening for a reason, with a universal plan in motion, but I can't stop weighing one road against another. Would I have been happier if...Should I have stayed with...Should I have left? Do I have too much doubt and not enough trust? Is my inner voice being overshadowed by outside noises? Am I spending too much time worrying and not enough time living? Yes, we will all make mistakes, bad choices, questionable decisions but on the upside, we will never be bored and we'll have enough stories to fill hundreds of pages of our riveting memoirs. I guess the lesson is, live life to the fullest, get messy, make mistakes, laugh, scream, cry and smile because we only get one chance, but if we take risks one is all we'll need...and we'll be too busy to notice any mistakes.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

I'm back...

I have been away from this blog for so long because I have been working on other other words, life, family, friends and paying the bills kind of got in the way. But what I'm realizing as I explore other blogs out there, is that those "other endeavors" are what make for great blog posts and personal exploration. Those daily tasks and the thoughts and feelings that go into each and every one of them is what connects us all. Fear, love, anger, happiness and every other emotion under the sun is what binds us together and what keeps us from falling apart. And isn't that the point of all writing, to discover pieces of yourself and thoughts and ideas that you would have never found otherwise?

This blog is my written epiphany. I hope it inspires you to find your own, as well.