Do you ever have one of those days where everything just falls into place? This was one of those days. The morning started off with a raid of clothes that Morgan was giving away... new running clothes??? Yes please! Then we headed of to the adorable Pannikin for coffee, muffins, cinnamon rolls and carrot cake... yeah yeah I know not exactly healthy but we couldn't decide!
The crazy part was when we parked in front of Pannikin I looked up and the shopping center in front of me looked really familiar with its cute little yellow buildings and I knew I'd seen it before. Turns out I'd seen it in pictures from numerous Google searches. One of the stores was DeepFling... a store that specializes in Scandinavian clothes and jewelry. I had been wanting to go there for months because they carry the jewelry line from Sweden that Carly and I fell in love with on our trip. We were sad to find that it didn't open for another hour but it turned out to be fortuitous because Morgan joined us for breakfast half way through when she was done with her workout and we all trouped over there afterword. Carly decided to buy herself a graduation present.
Or maybe a couple graduation presents... Then we said good bye to Morgan and got in the car and Carly points to this tattoo parlor in front of us and says, "That's where I almost got my nose pierced." I told her that I had been considering getting a tattoo for a while now and that I had promised myself if I finished the race I would finally get it. Before I knew it she was on the phone asking Morgan if it was a good place for tattoos and Morgan was flipping a u-turn.
I had decided long ago that I would get the word Balance on my wrist. When the tattoo guy asked me why I was getting it I told him it represented my life over the past year. I explained that I had spent the last four years almost completely focused on academia which led to a fairly sedentary life with no time for anything else like I don't know ... exercise. This year had been all about seeking a life of balance. I didn't wan't to be focused on any one thing. I think it can best be summed up by the Einstein quote, "Life is like riding a bicycle, one can only move forward with balance." He also asked about the race and the reasons why I run which I could repeat but Morgan does it so much better in her blog soo... http://runningbums.blogspot.com/2011/06/its-not-about-performance-its-about.html.
The actual process of getting the tattoo was much more painful then I anticipated. Apparently the wrist is one of the most painful spots to get a tattoo. I probably should have figured that out before hand huh? Oh well. Luckily I had Carly to hold my hand through it all and Morgan to document the experience. Don't you think this girl should go into photo journalism?
Over a week has gone by and I'm still ecstatic about it. Not only is it a daily reminder to seek balance whether that be between exercising and my ever present need to eat cake or between enjoying things that are safe and comforting while still remembering the reward that comes from pushing myself out of my comfort zone and trying new things. It's also a reminder of this amazing weekend that I got to spend with wonderful people doing something I never thought I could.