Tag Archives: wellness

ship wreck

alton mills window

I have since watched seasons turn, tended gardens,

And I understand that for new life to grow

What has long been held back, held in,

Must be released, set free, transformed,

Composted, returned.          (from Leaving by Claire Sylvan)


I was sifting through Claire’s beautiful book of poems called ‘Turnings’ and this snippet from her poem ‘Leaving’ pulled me in and put words to a feeling I have been nestling for some time.

Strange how the other day the prospect of being offered a good job with a regular salary and Monday to Friday hours brought sadness instead of joy.  As if, instead of watching an opportunity unfurl, I was seeing the blinds be drawn on the window.  And I knew then that I needed to pay attention to that feeling.

I have been more silent this year.  Withdrawn.  A small ship wreck of my former self.  And i’ve allowed myself, for once, to simply sit with this for awhile and watch what comes back to shore.  To not jump at the first chance of change.  All too often I grab for the first thing that looks like a life jacket, only weeks or months later to discover it is the same piece of driftwood that i’ve been narrowly clinging to for years.

I have spent a lot of time worrying about what other people think or trying to achieve what someone else wants for me.  I’ve noticed that when I do put words to the things I want they are often shoved down.  Irresponsible.  Eccentric.  Too many ideas.  Too little focus.  Flighty.  Indecisive.  Not whole.

I’m ready now to start transforming the judgments I have picked up.  They do not come from me and don’t belong here.  Responsive.  Creative.  A wealth of ideas.  Outside the box.  Adventurous.  Decisive.  Whole.

I’ve worked hard this past year.  And instead of focusing on the isolation, the exhaustion, the sense of having given too much…I want to focus on the solitude, the rest, the sense that I can now

point to what i want (by virtue of knowing what I don’t want).

I was recently asked in an interview to describe my dream job.  What came out of my mouth was what they wanted to hear.  That is, after all, what we have been told to do in an interview.  But I’m spitting up truth these days when I least expect it.  I asked myself that very same question when I got home.  Naturally, I had a different answer.

Now the question is whether or not I am going to listen to and follow that truth.

What I would like to do with 2013:

  • develop a creative writing e-course and eventually expand that to a series of retreats.  An opportunity to engage people to seek and speak their truth, their story through a series of guided activities and writing exercises.  the kind of writing that will feel like invasive surgery, an embrace and a warm cup of cider (all at the same time)
  • craft.  create.  and sell little bits of beauty.
  • write.  write.  write. and when i think it’s out:  edit.  edit.  edit.
  • sip tea.  sell tea.
  • finish the last bit of my 2nd personal trainer certification and study wellness coaching.

It Doesn’t Pay To Get Discouraged

“One of the things I learned the hard way was that it doesn’t pay to get discouraged. Keeping busy and making optimism a way of life can restore your faith in yourself.”
― Lucille Ball

I have a terrible habit.  Often (or sadly, most of the time) I concern myself with what others think and look to the outside for validation. I’m not a fan of stereotypes or labels, but for whatever reason, I allow myself to be boxed in by them all the time.  But I’ve reached a breaking point.  Last year, while I was working towards a personal trainer certification through the YMCA, I expected support but instead was frequently met by comments like “really?” or “it doesn’t sound like you” or my personal fav “you know it’s really something for an outgoing sort of person”.

I suppose I’m not surprised by the reaction, but more or less disappointed that I allowed those reactions to discourage me.  I finished my certification and was so unbelievably proud (it was, after all, a lot of work), but was saddened by this feeling that I couldn’t share my excitement about this new path with a lot of the people I know.  And even more saddened by the fact that I allowed what other people feel I am capable of to shape my own perception about myself.  Subsequently, I let a few new opportunities pass me by and scurried safely back inside the person some people feel I should be.

Yes, it’s true…I love to knit.  I know I’m your ‘hippy’ friend.  I know you think I sit around chugging back beer and making pessimistic remarks about the state of the world (which granted sometimes I do).  I know you think I’m socially awkward, a little off, eccentric, or ‘different’.  I know you didn’t think I knew how to even locate a gym  or that I even owned a pair of running shoes.

But there is a lot you don’t know.

If you judged, it’s ok.

I am, however, the only one who gets to decide who I am.

I do own running shoes and a treadmill.  I work out 6 days a week.  I believe fitness should be about more than your body.  I support wellness (mind, body and spirit).  I am continually looking for ways to challenge myself…physically, creatively, emotionally.

I’m social…too social at times, but I love to learn and I love to meet new people.

I’m pessimistic, but also very motivated and driven.

I’m no supermodel, but my body is beautiful.

I believe being fit has nothing to do with the ‘shape’ of your body and everything to do with loving and caring for yourself.

I exercise hard and I fuel my body with home cooked whole foods.  I love to eat and don’t know the word ‘diet’.

I like to run and I’m completely in love with my evening swims at the pool.

And yes, even though i desire to train bootcampers with burpees and mountain climbers…even though I’m fascinated by learning about anatomy, nutrition and wellness…even though I spend my nights reading about training principles and program design…and even though I don’t have perfect abs (but holy shit you should check out my cardiovascular system)…

I’m also still your ‘hippy’ friend who loves to knit, guzzle back a few beers…and yes, I am sometimes the ‘weird’ one.  It’s ok.  I can be more than one thing.

I can even be some things you don’t think I am.  The fact is, I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished and I don’t much care for the confinement of a box.

To reaffirm this new path that I have chosen for myself I have been working towards yet another certification.  It feels good to be doing something I love.  Final written and practical exam booked for November.  Couldn’t be more excited.

and maybe one day I’ll learn to knit and run at the same time.  (i’m close…I swear…so close).