The Bittersweet Dance

I have been working on this one for over a week, forgive me for the past tenses.


 

 

After my mother passed away, my sisters and I decided to enroll all our girls in dance class.  The same dance studio that my mother went to , the same dance studio that we went to.  For years on Wednesday afternoons, we would make the half hour drive to Amesbury for our tap, ballet and jazz lessons. As I sat there waiting during my daughters class, so many memories flooded back. It didn’t  help that literally amongst the picture collages on the wall were some pictures of my mom.  Looking at her pictures, she was so full of life!  She was so happy. She loved dancing, she loved dancing school, she loved the family that owned the studio.  Its funny, so many people at her services commented on what a great dancer she was and how much she loved to dance, but honestly, I can’t remember when she was well enough in recent years to actually dance.  I bet it had been 10 years or more.

It was so bittersweet,  heartbreaking actually.

It seems like this week everything has been crappy.  I am still dealing with armpit issue.  They hurt so darn bad. Still.  I went to the doctors on Monday. More blood work.  If my levels were high, then Pet scan would be ordered.  My levels are elevated by not high enough I guess.  My doctor is also trying to get me on a different medication that may help me better.

In the meantime, I am still in pain and I am still sore.

I am struggling with my disease, that’s what the doctor is calling it.  Though the whole thing isn’t fully named, I am really having  a hard time.  I don’t know even how to explain it.  Just being is difficult.  It is hard getting out of bed, getting dressed, all my daily activities.  I have faith that I  will get an answer eventually  and that I will have a regimen that works for me. In the meantime though, Things suck.

I want to feel better, more than anything.  I am terrified that I am cursed with my moms poor health and that I am doomed to follow her path. And I know, I know, situations are entirely different , and yes, I am most likely being dramatic, but  I don’t want that. I don’t want to deal with this crap the rest of my life. I want to live the best life possible.  I just don’t know how to do this.

I am wrestling with my emotions and reality.  What am I supposed to be or do ?

I need to lose this weight. I need to be better and I need to move. But I can’t while I feel this awful on a regular basis . I need just need to have faith that answers and treatment plan will come soon .  Its hard .

My mother always saw the light through the dark.  The positive through the negative.  The love above loss.   I wish so much I could be like that , and I swear I am trying .  I just at a loss on how to execute it.

Hopefully one day I will rise above and be able to live this life the best way I can .

Until then, I will just keep swimming.

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You May Say I’m a dreamer

But I’m not the only one …. 

Momma was too . 


My mother was probably the biggest dreamer I know . Always having hope that her dreams would come true . I’d like to think that all her dreams came true , but I’m sure they didn’t . I mean if her dream was to be the bestest momma ever and the bestest nana ever and just the greatest human to ever live – then mission accomplished! 

Sunday we started the process of going through Mums things . Gut wrenching doesn’t even describe it . It was fucking awful . It would of been no matter if it was a month since she has been gone or 10 years . I hated it . 

As long as I can remember my mother was always dreaming of a better way , dreaming of her own business so she could contribute. She did the usual , you know the home party route , Princess House , Party Lites , she did Avon . In fact , it was when my mother was canvassing the neighborhood selling Avon that friendships were forged with our neighbors . Now , 34 years later , we are still friends . That’s magic . 

My mother had a cross stitch business for a large part of my life as her health would allow . She would sew these amazing samplers and then she would stain them to look antique. I would go with her to craft fairs . She was so talented , it blows my mind . She had done an after school program that I helped her with . She made cross stitch kits for these kids . They all loved it . Honestly I had forgotten about it until I was looking for a cross stitch kit for my daughter and I to do together . I , myself haven’t done it for probably 20-25 years, but I want to give it a whirl . And my daughter wants too a lot . So the search continues for a kit . 

Amongst my mothers things were a plethora of crafting items . From frames to jewelry making tools and beads to jewelry she wanted to sell , and as I think of it , it makes me so sad . She had all these ideas , probably thousands of ideas and she never really got to see them through .  

It just breaks my heart that her body would  not allow her to fulfill her dreams . I hope she didn’t look at it that way , but I can’t help but think of it like that . 

All of this has me really thinking about my dreams and what I want out of my life . What am I passionate about ? What do I want to do in my life ? I mean I got very lucky with 3 healthy kids , but what do I want ? For me ? To fulfill me ? I think as parents we get so caught up in our kids that we forget about ourselves and what made us who we are to begin with . 

So , for me , I want to get back into writing . I have story ideas that I need to bring to life.


I love writing . I always have and it’s something I have been going over and over . In another moment when Mum sent me a sign , I was watching the Simpson’s last night ( yes , I watch the Simpson’s , don’t be hatin’) and it was the episode where Moe becomes a writer and gets to go to Word Loaf . Check it out below : 

Moe N Lisa Simpsons
I looked at it as it’s an episode about writing . And I have been searching to find myself and how I honor my mother . So , I took it as a sign . 

I think the way to honor her the best is to just be me and not stop dreaming . 

And now that I’ve got some star power up there , maybe some of these dreams will come true . 

Don’t stop dreaming 

Don’t stop Believing 

Don’t stop Swimming 

Signs on a Saturday

Hi everyone. How’s the weekend treating you ?  I had a very busy Saturday . Which I am already paying for . My body is screaming today . And I slept pretty darn awful . But let’s focus on the positives of yesterday . 

I made what is becoming my weekly pilgrimage to see Mum . This week my daughter picked out a red heart balloon that says ” I Love You” and we picked out a bouquet of various colored roses .  It’s hard for me to go to the cemetery. I guess it’s the part where I leave her there . All alone . I feel like putting in a couch there for us to go sit and talk to her , lol. I think though I want to get her some of those solar lights so it’s not so dark for her . 

I’m trying to deal with my mothers death in a healthy way , but really , how fucked up is that ? A healthy way ? What does that even mean ? How is any of this healthy or right ? Healthy should of been what she was . And right is definitely , what this is not . 

I also trying to get my emotions under control because the more upset I am, the more prone to flares I am.  I seem to be in a flare state since my mother died and I am in a lot of pain , physically and emotionally. I am hopeful my recent change in meds will help with this, but so far no . 

So ,back to my day . We go see Mum , then head for a quick visit with my dad . Then we head to get our hair done . My desperate need for cut and color and my daughters back to school cut . We get there early so we  walk around hunting Pokémon . Lots of walking around . We get our hair done , head to pick up my oldest from work and head home . The hubs and I went out for the night to celebrate our 18 year anniversary. 

We get home late and I am so exhausted. I’m trying to get to sleep when my daughter comes in upset about Nana. She is crying and inconsolable.  She’s clutching her bunny Pinky which her and Nana made together at Build a Bear . Seeing her like this just breaks me . I’m trying to comfort her and myself at the same time . So I tell her about the Signs . Signs that Nana will show her that she is there and with her . I tell her a story about how a cardinal came in the yard the other night while I was talking with my dad . How I know it was Nana . I tell her how even though she can’t hear her say “Hi Maddie , I am here ” she will let her know that she is there with her . I give her a blanket of my mothers for her to sleep with and I head to her room to tuck her in . When I get to her room she holds up 2 Beanie Babies . 

Wouldn’t you know ? ONE WAS A CARDINAL ! I burst into tears again . I told her that Nana was letting you know she was here already! I don’t know who it comforted more , me or her . 

Even in death, Mum is still looking out for us and giving us what we need . Absolutely incredible. 

One of my most favorite movies is The Crow. We even named our dog , Draven , when I was a teenager after the main character, Eric Draven. Mum loved that dog .  This is one of my favorite quotes from that film :

” If the people we love are stolen from us, the way to have them live on is to never stop loving them. Buildings burn, people die, but real love is forever.”


Real love . Real love extends beyond a significant other . Real love extends beyond our children , our parents . Real love is love we have for those in our life we would do anything for . Regardless of blood . 

Signs are real . Weather or not it originates in your head , if it comforts you , it’s real . For now it’s what I will believe in . 

Chips and Dead Lifts

First, I gotta say, tonight was fantabulous.  Simply fantabulous.

I want to first go over ” chips”.  In my gym, we use chips to keep track of our rounds.  Not sure if every gym does this, but we do.  For me, its not about how many chips are there, the chips themselves represent accomplishment.  On every level.  And I suppose that yes, I  can count to 5 all by myself and keep track on my own, but what fun is that?  It is the best feeling to see all the chips you took moved from the start pile to the finish.  Its symbolic.  I look forward to seeing those chips go from pile to pile.  Now granted, for me, usually I am over confident and not all my chips move.  Some times its only a few.  But it truly is what they represent that is the point.

Here is a pic of tonights chips :

5 Chips = 5 Rounds = Happy Meg

5 Chips = 5 Rounds = Happy Meg

We had a 10 minute WOD = 5 rounds:

6 Alternating DB snatches – went up to 40 lbs on this. You guessed – PR BABY!

8 Hands release push ups

12 V ups

Time 9:30

I LOVE SNATCHES.  Go ahead and get your dirty little snickers out of the way, yes, its funny…  But I love barbell snatches, Dumb bell snatches, Kettle Bell snatches.  I have always had an easier time with the move, so I think that is why I  have always enjoyed them.

The WOD was after the strength portion of the evening, which was Deadlifts.

 

Tonight my friends, was an epic night for yours truly.  I crushed a goal.  Crushed.  Exceeded.  Boom.  Bang.  That just happened!

Some of you may have read my post back from January regarding doing the Crossfit Total WOD , where I dead lifted 210 lbs.  I did the 210 and I clearly remember the struggle to get to 215.  I couldn’t get the bar off the ground for 1 rep.  I remember the defeat I felt.  I was still super proud I got to the 210 but Man, I wanted the 215.

Guess what kids?  I DID IT!!!! I DID 215 LBS!!! NOT JUST 1 REP BUT 4 TOTAL!!! yeah, yeah, I know not that many but Oh My Freaking God, does it feel AWESOME!!!!

Here is a pic of the big moment.

 

 

215 Lbs Baby!!!

215 Lbs Baby!!!

 

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Not a pretty pic, but such a pretty feeling!

I understand these photos are not flattering by any way shape or form, and I will proudly say, ” I DO NOT CARE”

These photos represent a goal.  A goal I crushed.  A new goal being created.  And I suppose I could go the way of the main stream and  photoshop my big ol belly from hanging over the bar. But Fuck that, I earned this shit. The belly will go down, And I will continue to rise and be strong.

 

This is what a real person with real goals and real struggles and real rolls and real obesity looks like.  She ain’t pretty, but she is damn fantastic.

I am a work in progress and I am damn happy with the way I am going.

I do have to give a big shot out to my coach Jane who was such a pusher and so awesome when I asked her to take my picture.

I feel like my train is getting back on her tracks and things are getting to be where they need to be for me.  Every day, I tell myself ” Just Keep Swimming”  I keep going and I don’t stop.  Nothing worth fighting for was ever earned easily.

So , get out there and be your own hero. Put on your cape, Put on your rope, grab your cuffs, get your shield, hop in your Batmobile and get going.

 

Own the day, Seize the Day, Claim the Day.

 

I would to see pictures of you folks and your PR’s!  If you would like to share, send them to lessthighsmorethunder@gmail.com.

 

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Who am I ?

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TO ALL THOSE WHO GAVE ALL FOR US, THANK YOU.

TO ALL THOSE WHO CONTINUE TO GIVE THEIR ALL FOR US, THANK YOU.

 

This blog as most of you know is about my journey.  The good, the bad, the ugly, the ridiculous, the hilarious, the struggles and the triumphs.  This year, I will admit, I am really not proud of myself at all.  Honestly, I am really in a funk and I freaking hate it.  So , of course, you are saying to yourself,  ” So do something about it”.  Of course, that is the obvious answer.  And Lord knows I am trying.  This lack of working out and extreme funk is effecting me on all levels.  I suppose I never would of that that it would, but I guess the reality is, I have changed my life , I have changed my lifestyle. Weather or not, I am sticking to it, is one thing, but my body is reacting to the lack of exercise for certain.  Thank goodness I am still holding onto my size drop, but alas, there have been pounds gained.

I LOVE working out.  I am dying during it, but the rush when the workout is completed , is like nothing I have felt before.  I really think that for such a long time I felt so bad about myself.  My self esteem was horrible, I suppose on some level it still is, but through this journey, I have shown myself that I am pretty darn amazing 🙂

I want to continue and I want to get out of my funk.  If I could find a way to workout everyday, I would so do it.  I guess all of this is about balance.  I just need to find mine.

I did get a run in today.  Felt good to get moving.  Did not run as far as I would of liked, but a run is a run.  I will so not be ready for my color run on Saturday, but thats okay.  A bunch of my gym buddies will be there, so it will be fun.

When I started this, one of my goals was to run a 5k.  I did my first 5k last November.  The more I get to know my body and workout more,  I kinda think I am over running.  I would so much rather lift weights and do a workout than run.  Don’t get me wrong, I still will run and still want to be able to run, but as far as the bucket list is concerned, we met that goal. lol.

One of the biggest things about me, is I can’t keep my emotions or my feelings in.  I wear my heart on my sleeve.  I am a horrible liar. I am honest and upfront.  I suppose it is good and bad, but it is what it is.  I don’t know how to not be like that.  I like sharing my life, I like sharing my stories, I like hearing people and their stories.  I guess that is why I enjoy this whole blogging world.

So, yeah, I share my gym stories good or bad with those around me.  Sometimes, I can tell my kids don’t want to listen. And my husband, forget about it.   But my momma, welp, she always listens to me. I can call her up and start spouting off my workout and she just listens.  I have called her and literally said ” I know you will have no idea what I am talking about, but just listen” and she does.  I don’t always say it, but it means the world to me.    And it’s not just workout stuff, I can call her with anything.  I think we all need that person we can just vent to and let go with.  Thank you Mum!

I guess this is kinda a mish mosh of thoughts, but its been kinda a mish mosh day.  Here is to a great week for all of us!

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Me against myself

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Tomorrow I take my turn at 14.5. I am scared out of my mind . Thrusters and burpees for time . How on earth am I going to do this ? I literally was up half the night stressing about it. What my plan of attack will be, how long will it take me , can I even do it ? I want to do it and finish so bad that it is almost like I am psyching myself out .   I need to finish this for myself.  It is a scary thought to think that you are literally the only thing that can hold you down.  There are no other factors – its just me.  What a scary thought.

Plus last time I did thrusters, I think it was only 45 lbs.  Not to say I can’t do 65lbs, but I got a feeling it is going to be a struggle. A big struggle.  Burpees on the other hand, yes, I can do them, yes, they take me forever, but at least I know I can physically do them.

What I really need to do is get out of my own head, you know what I mean? Ugh.

 

Gotta Keep Swimming.

 

This is going to be a big week for me, I just hope I don’t let myself down.

Wish me luck, I am going to need it!

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The Weekly One More 1/26/14

Megs thingsHello there peeps!

It is Weekly One More Time! For those just joining us – the Weekly One More is where we do just one more little healthy/ fit thing each week than we did before.  Its all about baby steps.

This week, my one more, is Take the Stairs.  Yes, is this simple? Yup. You got it.  But think about it, how many times are we presented with the escalator at the mall, or the elevator at the office?  Heck! Even my gyms building has an elevator, and believe me, it has been hard not to take it sometimes!

Any physical activity is better than doing none.  Any movement is better than staying still.

So, its an easy one for me this week, but one that I can’t veer from.

 

What is your One More this week?

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Set me on fire

I drove home from class last night so upset . It was a sweltering 48 degrees here in Massachusetts so we had a running workout .

I haven’t run for a while but I was looking forward to the challenge. I went into the WOD confident that I could do at least 3 of the 4 rounds in the time allowed 26 minutes . I have gotten stronger and I am progressing so I felt I could do better than I have done in the past . Not saying I am Carl Lewis by any means, or even the person who dusts off his sneakers for him, but I really thought that since I am doing better, my running would of not been so bad.

FAIL.  Massive Massive Massive Fail.  Ugh.

So, lets recap my class .  We did our warm up and went over the WOD.  It was:

4 rounds 26 min cap

30 DB Walking Lunges

15 Pullups

400 m run

I got my DB’s – I grabbed 20’s since my lunges still need improvement.  Practiced a bit , that was good, then over to the bar.  There it was decided that I would do ring rows since my pullups are not so great, there is no way I could do 15 and still get through even 3 rounds.  So ugh again – ring rows.

So this starts my deflation of the evening.  Then we start the WOD.  My walking lunges, yeah, took me longer than everyone, which I knew would happen.  Then onto the devil ring rows, then out for my run.  I felt great going down the stairs hitting the pavement, felt I had a good pace, but soon realized that no, I totally didn’t and I was ready to die.  Over and over, even out loud ” Just Keep Swimming, Just Keep Swimming” Those 3 little words have helped me so much.  Why is it that I am so ready to curl up into a ball and cry in the road when I do these things?  It is fucking hard. I mean WTF?  Why can’t I get over this hurdle? I know I know, run more.  Duh.  I am going to try and run more so I can do these 5 K’s I want to do and not die.

So, back to the WOD, I get back in  – round 1 done! Got right back into my walking devil lunges,  Back to ring rows, back outside – get back in round 2 down.  Round 3 Lunges were like someone set my legs on fire, so hard!  Back to the ring rows, where it felt like my arms were on fire, Then back outside for my run – where I wished someone would just set me on fire.  My last run was so slow going.  My legs would barely move.  On the plus side, my calves that used to bother me all the time when running weren’t bothering me.  I finally made it back in – round 3 done.  My time was 29:57.  Over the 26 minutes.  But at least I got 3 rounds.

I know in the big picture, I did ok.  I think I just got inside my own head.  It just stunk.

But I really thought about this.  I was going to blog last night night, but figured it would be too negative.  I was really upset and I let it get the best of me.

So – how do I fix this?  Well, as I said, set me on fire, right?

Just call me a Phoenix – rising from the ashes of my former self.

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Reborn and ready to kick some ass!

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Progress Update !

Here we are in December.  It has been 9 months since I started working out. I have had an amazing year.  I have done things and accomplished things I never dreamed possible.  I have made some truly amazing friendships.  I have grown so much.  I believe in myself.  I was not able to say that at the beginning of the year.  I am proud of myself!

Well, I have mentioned it before, I was the lucky recipient of some hand me downs courtesy of my cousins bestie.  There was this dress in there that I loved, you know, a fancy dress.  Didn’t know where I would wear it, or even if it would fit.  So, yesterday we had ” Pre- Christmas” It was just a small get together but I figured I would give the dress a go.

I thought this was a good time to do a progress update.  So here goes:

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I felt amazing in this dress.  I don’t know why.  Maybe because it zipped the first time without a struggle, maybe because I did not need to wear any ” Suck me in” undergarments, I think it was just because I looked good!

Holy moly! I am saying I looked good – you are darn right!

I am the living embodiment of hard work paying off.

So lets crunch the numbers :

 To Date Weight Loss : 38.7 lbs!!!!!

Present Size : 16  – down 4 sizes!

Hard Work People is the ONLY way to get results that last .  I am so thankful for the blessings this year has brought me.  Gotta Keep Swimming!

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The Man Maker

Yes kids, Man Makers were the nemesis last night in class.  For those of you unfamiliar with Man Makers , let me explain.  So, I equate them to a Burpee on steroids.  Here is how they are done:

 

Yeah, I know – totally awesome, right?!? Cha!!!! They are a killer, especially for me, since they are similar to a burpee which I struggle with.  So, let’s go over how I did.  For starters, we did 100 sit ups.  I banged out 20 pretty quickly, then the rest were a struggle.  The goal was to do them as fast as possible to move on the man makers.  I am already feeling the sit ups, whenever I laugh, go figure.  So, finished those up, last as usual, then onto the man makers.

We had to do 30 Man Makers.   I really need to get myself some gloves for when we do these types of moves, I always use some towels over the dumb bells so my hands don’t hurt as bad.  So, I haven’t done man makers in a while but I thought I could do a few at a time and chip away at it.  I ended up doing 2 at a time.  And honestly, the hardest part was the clean and squat thrust for me.  I could barely get my arms up.  I thought I was going to drop the dumb bells on my head.  And , I have been using the 35 lb weight lately, but I knew there was no way that was going to happen, so I went down to 22 lbs.  All in all, I felt the Man Makers defeated me, badly.  I was the last to finish.  Which, that is fine for me, but still stings.  I completed the 100 sit ups and 30 Man Makers in 24:05 .

Then it was onto rope climb practice.  I tried again, more like Tarzan swinging from the vine, but at least I tried. I can get myself off the ground, I just cannot move myself up the rope, which of course, is the point.

Last night I left class exhausted and feeling defeated.  For as long as I have been doing this I feel I should be a lot better at things.  And some things, I totally am.  The reality is, I am still carrying 235 lbs and no matter what, things will still be a struggle.  I have to always remind myself that this is a lifestyle change and it does not happen over night.  Honestly, I see this process taking me years to be where I want, and from there it is upkeep.

I am determined to keep moving and keep going.  To Keep Swimming.  I use my ” Just Keep Swimming” mantra everyday.  I am afraid if I stop swimming, I will sink and never return to the surface. I have to keep going.

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