Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Running From the Voices of My Past

Isn't it interesting how our pasts have such a large affect on our thoughts and actions in the present? Unfortunately it's usually in a negative capacity. There exists this little voice inside of me that has the power to completely over rule my ability to think logically. Take for example when I was recovering the flu, as soon as the symptoms started to lessen I was back to the gym. As soon as I could run without coughing I started running again. It didn't seem to matter that everyone told me I needed to let my body heal, there was that voice telling me that this was just an obstacle and the old me would have let it get in the way, but I wasn't gonna do that this time. What happened? I got sick again. But it wasn't that bad right? Just some kidney pain... that shouldn't affect my running... I had a half marathon approaching at breakneck speed after all.
So last Wednesday I got up early and went for a run. I couldn't run for more than a minute without needing to walk. I felt terrible the rest of the day and could barely keep my eyes open. I was so angry at myself, I felt like I should have been able to push myself harder, if I could just change my mindset maybe I'd find the strength to run harder. Luckily I had a friend who told me what an idiot I was being and it made me stop and think long enough to realize that my body was screaming at me that it was doing all it possibly could to heal itself and I wasn't helping matters. So I stopped running for a week and guess what? I had the best run ever tonight. I ran four miles with no problems and I could have run another two, luckily this time that voice in my head told me to stop and I actually listened. For once it took more willpower to stop then to push myself harder.
Our days are filled with the voices of our past. Whether it be our own voice or the voices of those around us. Some are positive and they remind us of the right thing to do in a certain situation. Others prey on our deepest insecurities to the point where we lose our ability to think logically and all we want to do is prove it wrong. We have this need to prove that we're changing and evolving and learning from past mistakes. This doesn't have to be a bad thing as long as we remember all things must exist in moderation... a balance between determination and logic. Listen to more than just that one voice, listen to your friends and family who have your best interests at heart and most importantly listen to your own voice... here and now. Your current voice knows far more about the person you have become then the voices of your past.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

A Different Approach

I haven't written for awhile. First I was sick with the plague and then my body decided to throw another obstacle in my way and gave me a kidney infection. In fact my body has been so kind as to bless me with three urinary tract infections in the past three kind right? Every time I went to my doctor he would give me yet another antibiotic and had no interest in finding out why I kept getting them or how to keep me from getting another. So this time I said screw it. I decided to see a naturopathic doctor. What is a naturopathic doctor you might ask? It's a doctor who focuses more on a whole body preventative approach to medicine. They also focus on encouraging the body's natural healing abilities through the use of supplements and changes to your diet.
As far as i'm concerned this is the best doctor I've ever had the pleasure of being examined by. He spent two hours asking me a plethora of questions about my health, diet, family, and medical history and then went through page after page of directions on the supplements I should take, the foods I should start eating more of and those I should stay away from. On the list of foods I have to stay away from... tomatoes, citrus, carbs, sugar, and caffeine. Not the easiest thing in the world. Hello i'm a girl! I need carbs and sugar like a panda needs bamboo. It's integral to my outlook on the world. I'm a firm believer that a piece of chocolate cake can bring about world peace. I haven't been able to give it up completely...but i'm trying. I'm also taking so many supplements that my purse now rattles when I walk. Probiotics, vitamin c, d-mannose, cranberry pills... I got it all.
So is it working??? I've now had two full days without pain! Better yet, I know what I need to do to make sure I don't get another infection. I'm cautiously hopeful that I'll be able to stay healthy without the aid of antibiotics. Hopefully life should return to "normal" now and I'll get back to writing.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Look for the Bare Necessities

The other day I was flipping through channels when I stopped on a show called Million Dollar Rooms. There was this woman on there talking about how she had spared no expense in decorating her closet. She had built display cases for her Chanel purses and the chandelier was made in France with 18ct gold, all the door pulls were also 18ct gold and she spent 10,000 dollars alone on a rug with the Chanel logo on it. She just "had to have it". I couldn't help but think about all the children in the world who go hungry or sleep on the streets and here she was spending her money on rugs. What would the world be like if people like that did some good with their money instead of spending it on material goods. Shame on her right!
Then I thought about the shoes I had bought that day that I just "had to have". Was I so different? She is living within her means and is spending her money on extraneous things that she believes are necessary for her daily life or her happiness. Do we not all do the same thing? I know I do. I have 11 pairs of Converse! Is that not ridiculous? Would a child in Alabama who lives in trailer and lives on food stamps not look at my closet and find me ridiculous?
It's interesting that growing up in the society that we do, shapes our opinions on what we consider necessary for daily life. Perhaps if I had grown up in a wealthier family I too may spend large sums of money on Chanel purses and see no problem with it. God I hope not! But the truth of the matter is that I still spend far too much on things that really are not necessary and there are people in the world that are barely making it from day to day.
Now i'm not saying we should all become minimalists and only spend money on food and necessary clothing. But I wan't to challenge myself to re-examine what I consider necessary. Perhaps I can put part of the money I spend in Target tank tops into my next trip to Italy or Switzerland. I'd rather spend money on experiences and activities rather than things anyway. The rest should go to those who really need it, with all the devastation in the world right now brought on by recent natural disasters and the state of the economy the state of my wardrobe loses it's importance. I have a responsibility as a human being to give what I can no matter the size of my bank account.
Ok... I'm stepping down from my soapbox now.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Momma's don't let Your Baby's Grow Up to be Cowboys

I have been sick since last Monday with what I affectionately term "the plague". The plague came upon our family by way of a very sick little boy... my nephew Aiden whom my aunts and cousins and I all helped baby sit two weekends ago. He came into contact with 7 members of my family and only 1 avoided said plague.
Since then I have left the house exactly twice and had contact with very few people as to keep further transmission of illness to a minimum. I have been exceedingly fortunate to have my own private nurse and cheerleader these past two weeks. People claim they have the best mom in the world... they don't have my mom. I'm nearly 23 years old and I have to say I thank the lord every day for blessing me with my mommy. Yes that's right, on rare occasions when I'm feeling especially pathetic, or weak, or simply overwhelmingly grateful I still call my mom "mommy". I don't believe I will ever reach an age where I cease to do so.
I have held off from writing about my mom because it is one of the hardest things I can imagine doing. The act of putting all the beauty that is my mom into words is impossible. Don't get me wrong... I love my dad and I admire so many aspects of his character and his heart. But my mom and I share a relationship that far exceeds the typical mother/daughter relationship. She is my true and always best friend. I look at her with wonder and fail to see how I can ever measure up. I once told her that if I become half the mother and woman that she is I will consider myself successful as a human being. I still believe this and strive for it.
When I was about 11 I think, I decided that I wanted to play roller hockey. I remember the day of my try-out with unfailing clarity that refuses to dim with time. I was terrible!!! They had us skate around the rink doing different things like skating backwards or skating with the puck. I took three times as long as everyone else and fell over and over again. This adorable little girl came down from the stands and stood at the glass over me and asked if I was ok. I made it through long enough to get outside and dissolve into tears of utter embarrassment and failure. My mom was beaming. She told me how proud she was of me and that she admired my fearlessness. She said she didn't think she possessed the strength it took for me to keep going. She didn't see me as a failure. I love and hate the memory of that day in equal proportions, but it's one of the most accurate representations of the depth of my mother's greatness.
So happy mother's day to all the mom's out there who inspire greatness in their children. Those who are there to catch them when they fall, dry their tears, hold them when they feel their world is falling apart and make them blue-berry pancakes when they have the plague. They never receive enough credit for all that they do, but we gotta keep on trying.

Love you Mom