Monthly Archives: December 2012
I woke up this morning inexplicably sad with no real reason for feeling the way I was…. or so I thought. It is New Year’s Eve and all around in social media, folks are making resolutions and reviewing the highlights of 2012, such that it was for them. In my head, there was a ton of things swirling; family, work, activism, mentoring and in some weird kind of way, I felt so much more had to be done and it became overwhelming in the moment. I was fine until my better half asked if I was okay and the flood gates opened.
To his credit, he held me until I was spent and slowly began to unravel what was happening to cause this meltdown on what was otherwise a good day. As we talked, I became incredibly present to some truths which made me feel better, so off I went to take a shower and prepare to face the rest of this year. On the floor of the tub, squirming and working valiantly against the blazing hot water, was a fly who was against all odds, making progress slowly out of the hot stream even as the water kept trying to sweep it away. As crazy as this may sound, I understood how that fly was feeling as I replayed some of the events of this year in my head and while the water eventually washed him down the drain, his effort did not go unnoticed or unappreciated.
When I headed downstairs, I saw what looked like a scruffy teenager speaking on ESPN and asked who in the world was that to which I got this reply; ” RGIII the infamous Redskins Quarterback.” Here was a young man who in my estimation, looked no larger than a scrappy puppy, yet there he stood, a well respected leader among his team and many others around the country due to his humility and committment to hard work. The Universe used both the fly and RGIII to remind me of a few truths that somehow slipped away for a moment;
- We may not fit the mold of what people consider to be acceptable as a leader but don’t stop doing what is good and right.
- Life is often filled with hot water moments, day, weeks and sometimes months; how we choose to navigate those waters will make the difference between long term survival and being washed down the drain.
- Hard work ALWAYS pays off in the end so no matter how people may try to derail you, remember that as you set your face to the often brutal winds of naysayers filled with malcontent.
- We may sometimes feel lonley on this journey but the truth is, we are never alone. Prayer works.
- Collaboration with others is the key to not only surviving but thriving… too often, we make the mistake of believing we are the only ones that can get things done a certain way but no one makes it to the top alone and several heads and talents combined are always better than one.
- Work smarter, not harder….
Like many of you, this year has been a journey of incredible highs and a few mind numbing lows but through it all, I remember that love and guidance abounds and each day, I resolve to be a little better than the one before. I am not one for resolutions as a direct result and that is ok too. Near the end of our heartfelt discussion, my better half said this to me: ” You are the Earth of stability that many look to as they grow, the Wind that keeps us all elevated inspite of ourselves and the Fire that will scorch us into renewal if all else fails. My role as your mate is to be the sound anchor that keeps you afloat and I always will” On that note, Happy New Year to you all and may you find peace, blessings and growth as you traverse through each day of 2013..
My other half and I are both Educators and as such, we often find ourselves busy beyond belief during the school year and have come to really appreciate the summer months where we go exploring every nook and cranny of our favorite places. This morning as I was prepping for the gym, He turns and says to me; “Honey, have you ever heard of Frontier Airlines?” Knowing him like I do, my diva radar went up and I replied ” no, why?” He gave me a look that I have come to know so well and replied ” Well, they have this great deal on flights to Louisianna….. “whoa, stop right there. Now I really smell a rat. Where is this flight leaving from I ask.. Trenton says he. Trenton? They have an Airport big enough for commercial Flights? Well…..The flights are not THAT large says he… But, he hastened to say, two round trip tickets are a total of $240 bucks!!
I looked at him askance and said “Let me see if I get this straight, you want us to take a flight from Trenton on an Airline I know nothing about in order to save a couple of bucks? What if it isn’t safe? ” He sputtered and replied,” we risk our lives every time we get on a flight anyway, why not save a buck in the process?” I have no words….
The look I gave him made him laugh until he could’nt breathe….
After a series of business meetings that literally had me pulling my hair in agony and sitting among fare that left my mouth watering, I got home and threw my hands up in frustration feeling like there was not much that could be done, given the dynamics and players involved. I rewarded myself by falling alseep within minutes of my head touching the pillows.. One can only hope that today would begin on a much brighter note…right? right…
As I trudged into the gym for bootcamp, there was Blair looking happier than one really should be at the ungodly hour of 5 a.m. and since my emotions take on a whole new dance when I see him, I proceeded to go about the business of prepping for the class as quietly as I could without drawing attention to myslef…
Who told me to open my mouth and make a comment regarding my tummy area and why after an entire year was I still struggling with belly fat? That baldheaded man looked at me dead pan and said: “It’s simple really, some people are shaped like pears where they carry the weight in the hips and shoulders while others like yourself, carries the bulk of your weight gain in your stomach which makes you round after you get past a certain percentage of body fat….. All I heard after the word “round” was wah, wah, wah, wah, wah, wah , wah…..
I turned to one of my classmates, stuck out my hands and said; “hello, my name is orange, pleased to meet you”. He certainly does know how to make a sister stay on track lest I think I have arrived… Le sigh.
And the journey continues…
In the summer of 2011, I bounced into church just as cute as I pleased and as I was accepting a program from the Usher, he smiled and said the words no woman wants to hear if she isn’t; “Congratulations, I had no idea you were pregnant!”…….. Insert a VERY pregnant pause here.. I told him I was not in fact, but thanks for the good wishes…poor thing looked and felt horrified but what he didn’t know at the time, was that I felt worse and decided to do something to regain control of my body and health because I could barley climb steps without being out of breath and my knees ached terribly.
So began the journey of a lifetime. I went to see my Dr., stood on the scale, got off, got on again, rubbed my eyes and told him he had better stop playing with my emotions because there was no way that scale was telling the truth!! Yes, I was in serious denial… I walked out of that office and went straight to the park where I commenced to walking diligently. In November, the now infamous Blair Baxter saw me on facebook and in his usual ” sweet” way asked where was the woman he trained a few years ago. Heck if I knew but he pulled me right back into a routine that has at once been hellacious, painful and a good reminder that the human body is capable of going beyond the pale. I made my journey incredibly public on purpose to keep me honest and maybe inspire others along the way.
So commenced the boot camps and training sessions where I was made to lift upwards of 160 pounds, do excercise routines that I still believe are not fit for men or beasts and made to track my calories each day. When I complained bitterly, I was told to stop being ” girly” and suck it up. I have spent more money on chiropractic care than a little bit and my knees stayed ashy in constant prayer that I would not hurt my trainers but I must confess that it was my diet that took me the longest to adjust because I LOVE good food and rice is the holy grail in my cuisine… Oh, but good old Blair stuck with me through the madness until it finally clicked and I looked up last week to find that a great majority of my clothing not only were way too big, I was a few sizes smaller than anticipated… and just like that, through all the pain, fussing and disbelief, a new healthier woman is emerging which leads me to this:
- The reason why we CAN’T is because we fail to TRY and stick with it until change happens.
- There are no quick fixes to weight loss and what may work for some, may fail with you. Play around with your diet to see which foods triggers weight gain and elimate them where possible.
- Exercise is wonderful but without proper diet, not much will change.
- Do this beyond the look you will attain externally. As we get older, our bodies cannot continue to adequately absorb the less than nutritional things we love to eat and will catch up in the form of diabetes, high cholesterol, etc.
- Please, incorporate weights into your exercise program; contrary to popular belief, they will not bulk you up and keeps your bones strong and healthy for a long time. It is especially crucial for those of us heading into our fifties.
- Businesses tend to take you more seriously if you appear to be healthy.
- Eat the foods you love in moderation. Too much of anything, is never good for you.
- Remember to take a rest day each week as you exercise because your muscles need time to recuperate. You can serious;y injure yourself otherwise.
- Seek the help of a good proffessional when possible; running on a treadmill like a hamster will help some but toning is crucial. Small and flabby is still just that.
- Surround yourself with others who will continue to inspire and motivate you. Do not allow anyone to derail your journey in the effort to “help” you through negative chatter like ” you are too skinny now”. Do what feels good and right for you always.
There were days when I sat on that gym floor and cried real tears of frustration because this felt impossible but I’ll be a monkey’s uncle if this thing really doesn’t work.. and let’s not get it twisted, it is hard work but since when has anyting worth having not been?