Catching My Breath, Letting It Go

First off, thanks to Kelly Clarkson for the song title from her new song, which I really love.   I love the lyrics and am going to download it to my running list (altho it’s too slow to really run to, it would be a good warm up song).  

“Now that you know this is my life, I won’t be told what’s supposed to be right.”  As I approach another birthday in February (49), it’s taken all these years to realize that this is my life, not anyone else’s.  I’ve spent most of my life (including most of my adult life) trying to please everyone around me.   Once I realized I couldn’t make most everyone happy (least of all myself), I stopped trying and then the crap really hit the fan.  As with most things, once you’ve hit the very bottom, it seldom looks like you expected it to.  And unless someone comes along and rescues you from all your problems, you have no choice but to get out of bed every day and continue on, because hey, that’s life.  

I had lunch with a good friend of mine yesterday and told her that my New Year’s resolution (which I never make – ha) is going to be stop worrying.  Just stop.  My children have told me over and over that worrying is a useless emotion, and I agree, but somehow I can’t stop it.  I go to sleep worrying about things, I wake up worrying and my hours spent in between are often fraught with anxiety.  I realize this goes back to a childhood filled with trying to be perfect and worrying about the outcome if I didn’t fulfill that (which let’s face it, who can live up to those standards)?  Is there any doubt I would end up with eating disorders?!

The last few weeks have been extremely stressful for me and it hit me like a ton of bricks this week that I can only do my best.  The outcome of things will be what they are – I can’t worry about it ahead of time.  So, there it is, I’m going to stop worrying.

As you all already know, as with most of my other emotions, stress makes me an even more emotional eater.  While there are times that I haven’t had an opportunity to even eat (because I’m so busy right now), this week in particular (think Halloween) has been awful with eating.  And even feeling like crap afterwards hasn’t stopped me!  Even as I analyze myself as that Three Musketeers is going into my mouth hasn’t stopped me.  

Of course, this is just the start of the holiday “eating season.”  I read an article the other night that suggested limiting to two things you really love at holiday time.  When you are at a function, you can have those two things (this is two things for the entire season, not per function – ha ha).  The rest of the time, tell yourself that if it isn’t (fill in the blank), then it won’t be that good.  And in truth, most of the time it isn’t – I know for myself, I eat because it’s there, or I’m nervous, or overly hungry, or WORRYING.  

Which now brings me to another situation, I have not been running.  The weather in Cleveland went from a blazing hot summer to very cold.  We sustained a hurricane this past week and there are still parts of the city without power (5 days later).  Most of the Metroparks are flooded and muddy and it’s not even 40 this morning, so the thought of battling the wind and cold is very unappealing.  I’m hoping with the time change this week, maybe I can force myself up early and at least walk, if not a slow run.  It always sounds like a great plan, but I’m not an early morning person at all!  

With all that being said, my son and I are signed up for the 2012 Turkey Trot in Cleveland that takes place on Thanksgiving morning.  He is running the 5 mile (which he did for the first time last year and had a fantastic time), and I will do the 1 mile fun run.  He tried talking me into the 5 mile, but I know my limits, people.  Of course, the minute I signed us up for the run I started worrying about the weather in three weeks – will it be snowing?  Will it be windy and rainy?  Okay, I can endure most anything for about an hour, and I commute downtown everyday (by train) and then walk in the worst storms to get to my building, I’m pretty sure, I can deal with the Turkey Trot for an hour.  

So, that’s where I am – moving forward still, even though the last few weeks have felt like a bit of a backslide.  Every day should be about learning, and the older I get, the better I know myself.  I hope you keep moving forward as well, and don’t look at a little misstep as disaster!

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