Monday, April 27, 2009

A Wild Safari

Last night, after a particularly long weekend, I decided to grab my current read and climb into the bathtub.

I pulled all the toys out of the tub, turned on the water, and crawled in.

About two pages into my book I stopped and looked around.  I was surrounded.  It was a wild safari in the bathroom.

The giraffe told me that my best friend is quite tall, and hot.  I told him to back off.

The hippo told me to stop being a stick in the mud.  He wouldn't tell me what about.

The rhino reminded me to pay bills.  Or the alligator would come after me.

And the whale commented on how she'd like to be my size.  It's all relative I told her.

It took me a while to realize that I was imagining things - whales don't belong in the safari!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Not Mr. Darcy

My literary life has had a good start this year.  So far I've read about thirty books.  And that is NOT counting the many books I read each night at the end of the evening to the cute, clean children snug in their beds.

One book has sat on my bookshelf for years, begging to be read.  I've resisted for years.  Mostly because it is considered one of the (if not the) ultimate chick books of all time. 

Pride & Prejudice

So for the record.  I've read it.  Rather I savored it.  Having known the characters all these years it was like spending a week at a spa with each of them, getting to know them all better and understanding all the missing pieces much more.

And for the record, the reason I love it so much is not Mr. Darcy.  It's Elizabeth Bennett.  Mr. Darcy is swell and his character is fascinating...and blah, blah, blah.  

For me the real romance was falling in love with Elizabeth through the pages.  Identifying so much with her character, the personal journey she goes through, and the harsh realizations she faces of family, self, and love.  

I'm inclined to believe that most women who read this novel fall more in love with Elizabeth than Mr. Darcy.  Which in unfortunate for all those men, including my own husband, who believe their wives to be smitten with Mr. Darcy.  

Now that the record is straight, where I'm concerned at least, I must continue in the improvement of my mind by more extensive reading.  Good thing the library has three books on hold for me now!

Psychology of a Run

There is a reason I wear headphones.  I know when I've run in groups of people that sometimes the others have wondered why, when good conversation is to be had, I've got headphones in.

Let me explain why.  My constant running partner is the evil genius who lives in my head, Shelina.  No, I'm don't have MPD.  I'm not schizophrenic.  

Shelina is this figment of my imagination - this part of me, embodied by a woman, who holds insane power over me.  She gets to hear all of my innermost workings. And she uses it to her advantage.  

Shelina came into my life as I was leaving the work place.  Unsure of my role as a mother and feeling the great loss (albeit by choice) of my identity of a career woman she slowly crept in with her self-consciousness, doubt, and insecurity.  Since then she has ruled supreme.  

So, if I run without my earphones Shelina's language of self-doubt fills my mind and every few steps, especially when push comes to shove, Shelina steps in ready to fill the void with notions of failure.  

Slowly but surely I am learning not to listen to her.  Slowly.  

In the meantime my music makes beats my body cannot ignore.  Kanye urges me to push it harder, faster, and become stronger. When Lady Gaga shouts out to use my muscle carve it out, work it hustle - well, that's what I do.   Robbie, Cascadia and even Miley Cyrus provide such solid beats that my feet cannot help but pick themselves up.  On top of that I round every corner thinking "What if ____ is standing there?"  I imagine someone from my TRI group, or E and the kids, or Amy and Sarah (my running missionaries) standing there cheering. 

And with each step the old Shelly returns.  And Shelina is fading in the dust of my confidence.  I even have moments where I am not sad about where I am now, what I look like now.  Rather I'm proud of where I am at.  And these are significant wins in the battle in myself.  

(PS - I hit mile 100 for the year! Suck on that Shelina!)