Showing posts from 2015

AthHalf 2015...Completion and Healing

I ran. I pushed. I finished. 2:13:59 I conquered because I needed to. Amazingly supportive husband. Beautiful children cheering me on. I am so fortunate. I am strong. I am healthy. I put me first and accomplished what I needed to. My little family is my world. I have enough. I am enough. We will overcome this. We will exceed expectation. We will persevere. I am mama strong.

I'm still running, some days that has to be enough

I don't give myself credit enough for the things I accomplish. For victories small or large. No. I am far better at picking a part all of my failings (as I call them). In fact, failure is my go to word. Pretty harsh for a mama runner PhD. And yet it's the one word I cannot shake. F-A-I-L-U-R-E So, where did failure come from? I didn't start out a failure. In fact I was a pretty good kid, mostly straight A's, rule follower, blah blah blah. Then after busting my ass for four years I missed the IB diploma by one point. Then I was refused entry into every military branch (but apparently if I had lied about taking anti-depressants as a teenager I could have enlisted). I shrugged it all off, hell I was going to Emory University. I was still something. And then I wasn't. Once there I became lost in a sea of "top" students, and I was barely average...sinking in big lectures designed to each us that not every one goes to med school. I had my first b

Hill running and life lessons

Coach has amped up my half marathon training recently. So I ran hills...with a stroller.  You're thinking the downhill would be easier and faster, I'm thinking you've never run hills.  Uphill is brutal, downhill is a race to catch up without slamming your feet into the ground trying to slow down or over striding. Hill running is about balance.  Too fast and you are eating pavement, too slow and you are crushing your feet, knees, etc. Balance. It was a short run and it was brutal. You work hard for running gains, you work hard for life goals. For some reason I felt like telling my son about hill running so the first 5 minutes I talked about how to run hills. Quick short steps up, longer strides down...but not too long.  My hill running mantra has always been "what goes up must come down." This translates into it's not always difficult, it will get easier. Every runner has a hill mantra.  Or else they walk hills. :) Then I went on a brief tangent ab

Therapist "Dating" 101

Finding a new therapist always makes me think of speed dating.  Probably because it is typically within a matter of minutes that I have determined the destiny of our relationship.  No, I am not overly sensitive or judgmental, I simply know the type of personalities I am going to mesh with in therapy (and life, for that matter).  More importantly, if I start to feel more educated than them, it's terminal. Therapist/client relationships are essential for results.  And in my span of therapists, since I start up therapy again every few years, I have only had two great ones so far.  Just two.   One male and one female.  Each of those relationships were concluded when I moved away.   Both evolved over the course of my sessions, both provided immense beneficial results.   One was a PhD, one was not (I am not an education elitist ALL the time). Both set some pretty high standards for future therapists.  My latest venture into therapy I ended up in this guy's office by

What is failure?

You know when you start off with a question like 'What is failure?' you are headed for murky waters.  I met with my new therapist this week, and all the 'getting to know you' questions stirred up a lot of shit for me.  As they always do.  This has been on my mind for a minute.  The truth behind what it feels like to leave my job, despite the poor fit that it and the location was for both me and my family.  It's not pretty, and as I begin sifting through my past to further understand my journey to here I am left with this overwhelming sensation of déjà vu. You think I am so brave, I walked away with my head held high.  I am bold.  I am a rebel, turning my back on academia to pursue my passions. You have no idea. I am nothing. This façade is for me, a theatrical attempt to not drown in the depths of my failure.  I failed not only myself but my family.  I dragged them to a place we could not thrive.  So much change, so little opportunity.  Lovely people,

Asking for help

Curled into a fetal position, incapable of even willing myself to sit up. Repeating my children's names over and over, just to remind myself that I must endure. It doesn't even hurt. I am numb. I hear them cry, daddy is in charge and one is tired and the other is needing cuddles. Mommy cannot cuddle, she is too busy holding herself. I knew these few weeks would be hard. I knew that I was pushing myself too much without taking the time for self care. So it's not surprising that I find myself here. Balled up in my numbness. Still willing myself just to sit up. I manage to open my eyes. The tears abated a while ago, the numbness persists. I feel empty. I feel lost. I feel like I am continuing to fail. Taking care of everyone but me, losing myself a little more each day. I am fighting a losing battle. The comforts of "home" lost in our transition from Kentucky to Georgia. I blame myself for all of this. I see my pain reflected in my son's frustration. His

Are your ears on?

I read a post recently about why women are more stressed out than men. It included suggestions on how the two genders could eradicate the inevitable escalation that typically occurs when men just "don't get it" or make the fatal mistake of responding "calm down." The article was written by a clinical psychologist, so please don't get your panties in a wad thinking I am wasting your time quoting some random blogger with no backing other than their glorified opinion. But then again, here you are reading ;) Anyway, the validation of emotions struck home for me. More than anything I loathe being told I am overly emotional, or that someone else doesn't feel that way. Fabulous, since I was stating how I feel I can totally see why it matters that you don't feel or think the same way. Um, no. In that moment you have the option to sympathize and listen, thus connecting on a more human level. I am not asking for you to agree or be my therap

The silent pain

On the days that you least expect it, that's when the silent yet numbing pain attacks. It starts with crying. The uncontrolled tears simply falling. The harder you try to stop them, the faster they come. You see the reflection of this numbing pain in your children. They act out, they seek you, they cry and whine. They are unsettled by your discomfort. This makes the pain worse. Now you are stuck in a cycle, forever spinning the wrong way. You grab something to hold on to, anything that will ground you. Desperate to hold yourself amidst reality so the irrational thinking will cease, or at the very least go silent. You try and try to reorient yourself. The numbness spreads, physically overtaking your entire body until it feels like a t angible entity. A force you are no longer capable of fighting or fending off. More tears. How did this happen? Wasn't today a good day? You had an amazing solo run yesterday, you accomplished so many tasks, everyone is 90% healthy again. You f

My first running post

And here we are, four posts in, finally talking about running.  I suppose it would have been better to begin with a positive running experience, but I prefer to keep it real.  I never said running was a cure, or even always positive. Shit, sometimes it is really negative. If Cheryl Strayed hiked the PCT to escape her problems, I run out my door to escape mine. But you can't escape them, eventually they will land even harder right on your damn stubborn head. And then what? And then you really face them. Because they are YOUR problems. We can wake up in a fine mood and then we spill milk everywhere. Of course it's chocolate milk and of course it goes everywhere. No big deal, right? Wrong. BFD. And that's when I lost it. I lost it over spilled milk, milk that  I  spilled. It was downhill from there. My hair trigger activated, I was an angry disaster ready to blow. Crawling the walls to get out, begging to hit the pavement. Certain that I could pound the f

Bad days happen

Today was a hard day. As a parent, as a spouse, as an adult. It sucked. I was pooped on, literally gushing onto my hands in my lap and onto the couch. I've been tending a sick baby for days now. Oh and now the toddler is feverish. Today was hard. What's worse is that it started out hard because it was a bad day for me. I woke up a wreck. My mental well being warped. It was a rough morning that turned into a difficult day spotted with moments of pure awesomeness. How I wish I could focus on those moments and not relive all of the bad ones over and over and over. Just don't dwell on them and you won't feel so bad. We all have those days, it's ok. I f you would only stop being so negative you would feel better. Sound familiar? Well I say to hell with that. It's ok to not be ok. More importantly it is ok to have a bad day. They don't know, they have no clue. How could they? You want mindreaders? Go find a circus. This is reality. Unless they have lived i

Unless vs. Success

The power of our stories cannot be understated. Why did I choose not to begin at the beginning with this post? Easy, I couldn't 1) see all of my beginning and 2) I wasn't ready to be honest. I am now. I am more than ready. I am tired of living a facade. I want to love and share all of me, not just the pretty bits that get skimmed over anyway. All of it. The yuck, the nasty, the downright wrongness of some chapters. These are the messy middle parts. And I will not gloss over them with silly and childish attempts at humor and deflection. I am a grown woman, and I have faced all of my shit as a grown woman. Am I perfect? Fuck no. But I am real. And I am proud of that achievement. "When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me." I Corinthians 13:11 ~ Dr. Jessica 5/20/2015 - Addicted to success If you came back for some autobio

What makes me RAD?

I first wrote this blog in May of 2015. It was 3 months after the birth of my second child, and I had just decided to leave academia permanently. I was enduring a severe battle with postpartum depression, and, unbeknownst to me, alcoholism (addiction). I started running again soon after my daughter was born, and this was one of the many ways I selected to avoid dealing with the shit under the rug of my life. I was in bad shape. I knew that I could no longer stay in a career that had no clue how to support families, or live in an area where my income did not support my family. There is this idea that professors have all this free time, and it's not true. The institution I was act had expectations for hours in my office and availability to students, research, meeting obligations (usually in the evening), and other student support that would potentially fall on weekends. I worked a lot. I was pregnant through that first year and it was stressful. I missed my toddler at home. Then my d