Today, M and I ran our #10forNala tribute run and it was cathartic, emotional, and challenging, all rolled into one.
I woke up feeling a bit exhausted and wondering if we would actually complete the 10 miles today or cut it short. I had posted about running our 10 miles earlier this week, against my usual MO, which is to do it, then talk about it (I fear jinxing myself, having a bad run, etc. and would rather do it quietly, then discuss. But I digress), because I was proud of what we were about to accomplish and, truthfully, was actually confident in this run and our ability to do it justice.
And do it justice we did.
We ran mostly in silence, with some ‘jukebox M’ along the way in his ever present ‘sherpa’ ways, random song outbursts that came right at a time where I’d struggle or start to tire. And M’s latest thing? To change lyrics in songs to something dirty…and it’s hilarious. He’ll just slide something in in place of a different word or phrase and change the tone of the song he’s singing entirely. My husband is hilarious, I must admit 🙂
And when there were moments of struggle, I’d think of Nala, and I’d think of Kayla, sitting at home, awaiting our return, ready to come down and trill her ever cute ‘mewww?’ that greets us as we enter now (and it’s the most adorable voice ever). I’d see a squirrel (aka bunny fake-out) and its fur would remind me of Nala, or I’d see her fur coloring in the leaves that have fallen from the trees, or be reminded of her cute little paws that would tap my face when she’d wake me up at dark thirty for breakfast. And I’d smile. And the struggle in my legs – or my mind – would wane and I’d run happily again.
We finished our run, breathed a sigh of relief, M held my hand, and said ‘we did it. Nala would be proud.’ And he’s right. She would be. And she is. And so is Kayla. Because we weren’t running just for Nala, but for Kayla as well.
As I wrote on instagram this morning: #10fornala completed this morning, #teampeixoto style. It may have been tough, but it was equally worth it and cathartic. I miss her more than anything but as tough as these last few weeks have been, we’re moving forward. And? Ms Kayla couldn’t me cuter, more loving and more ‘there’ for us, as we are trying to be for her. Onward. Sweet Nala. #runsherpa#fursherpa
I’ve been grappling for weeks on what to do with my blog but I’ve felt some clarity this weekend while on ‘lakation’ and as I sit here, rain pouring down, M beside me writing his novel (yes, novel…he is an amazing writer!)….I’ve started to come to a realization.
I miss writing.
And not just the puppies and rainbows writing I’ve grown accustomed to over the years, as my life has blossomed into the life I never imagined it could ever blossom into, but the life that I live – and love – now. The here and now. The imperfections. The stresses. The moments where I battle myself. But also? The moments where I experience this sense of euphoria…of where my life is now, vs. then, and no matter what, despite the imperfections, it is imperfectly perfect.
And that is real. And it’s not puppies and rainbows. And it has moments where I feel like I flail a little bit and am not sure what my next step is. With my job. With myself. With my journey.
And sometimes? It’s okay to not know. It’s okay to have a bad day. It’s okay to not strive for perfection (because perfection is overrated anyway) and aim for balance, realistic expectations and ultimately, happiness and simplicity. Not perfect. Not being everything to everyone. But making the hard decisions. Saying no. Staying true to me, beyond all else.
And I think that is relatable to many…the grapplings with what we all likely struggle with far more often than we’d like to admit. And it is something I am always exploring inwardly, how to get past my drive towards this need for perfection (or close to it) and want/need to be all to everyone, rather than really focus on what truly matters, and stop apologizing for that. Because we simply cannot be everything to everyone without something suffering (and usually that is ourselves, or our relationships, marriages, etc).
So maybe…just maybe…this is my emergence into my life as I see it now, absolutely imperfectly perfect, with a man that sits to my left, supporting me, laughing with me, but also challenging me to think differently, to not give up, to strive for more. And sometimes, to argue with, to get frustrated with and to want to shake him to get my point (even though I am sometimes wrong, as hard as it is to admit that) and realize that no matter what, we are in this forever, we are meant to be, we are attached at the heart and soul, and there’s nobody else I’d rather share this journey with than him. Forever.
So with this emergence…a new blog design, a new ‘about me’ – it may not be written as often as before, but it will shed light into the ongoing a-ha moments, the reality of life, and skip past the puppies and rainbows more often than not, because as much as I am a positive, happy person, life isn’t perfect. Nor should it be.
This is me. Learning. Embracing. Living. And once again, redefining… In the next chapter of my life…
Lately, M and I have been watching Joel Osteen on DVR on Sunday mornings and this week, though it was a rerun episode, it really struck home with me. The episode (you can watch it here) was about letting go, and letting Him take the wheel.
Joel talked about how easy it is to fall into dissapointment, feeling bitter and let down, when something doesn’t work out. When you don’t get what you want. When life doesn’t go the way YOU want it to. But when you put your faith and trust in God, and let Him take the wheel to drive you towards your destiny, that is freedom.
Emotional and spiritual freedom.
Ding, ding, ding. You mean, trust that the RIGHT thing will happen at the RIGHT time? Yes, pray. Yes, have faith. Yes, try for your goals and dreams and aspirations, no matter how big or small. But when it doesn’t work out, when life goes in the opposite direction? Know that it was for the right reason.
When he said that, and gave some really good real-world examples of when live goes in the opposite direction you were praying it would, I suddenly felt calm. Joel said ‘it’s a freeing way to live. Not worrying. Trusting.’
Um, yeah, no kidding.
This goes right in line with my quest to quell my overthinking brain,to shift my focus, and to trust where life has led me, to know that anything I face, I can conquer. I think the biggest example of this for me, is two-fold. My divorce. Obviously. For as much as I try to recall the happiness in those ten years with my ex-husband (and can’t.), whatever happiness I had then, has NOTHING on the happiness I feel now, in a relationship with M, the man I truly believe I was meant to be with. As we drifted to sleep last night, I muttered to M, as I slid my face into the crook in his neck where it fits so perfectly, ‘I am so glad that we just ‘get’ each other so well. We have similar goals and interests and support each other so much. I love you.’ It’s amazing when I look back at the last 3+ years and think about how many times I questioned whether I would ever feel love again, and whether I’d ever meet someone that truly matched ME, not just sort of, not just mostly, not just in 9 out of 10 ways, but in everyway. So to you, and to those I know are struggling with this very thing, let go. Trust. KNOW it will happen. And at the same time? Know that your decision, whatever it was/is at the time, was the right one.
At that same time, going through divorce, when I was really struggling with defining (and redefining) who I was, what I wanted to BE and where I wanted to take my life (this is the two-fold part, for those following along!), it was easy to slide into resentment, frustration and sadness, and not see the big picture. To see, as Joel says,’ the bigger view from God. That He may have closed the door, because you were believing too small, because you shouldn’t aim for second best. Trust him enough to take the wheel, to bring you towards your destiny. Don’t consume yourself with thoughts of bitterness, and unfairness, shake off the self pity, push aside the feelings of unfairness, let it go, move forward, confidently towards your destiny.’ <(paraphrased).
And now, looking back at what I have built up for myself, I know there were times where I may have been aiming for second best, or self-preservation mode (staying in a job for 2+ years too long, miserable, rather than pushing myself out of the comfort zone sooner, for a better, bigger opportunity, for example), or even, from a fitness perspective, forcing something that wasn’t ‘me.’ Group Kick…was not me. I thought it could be. But I’m no actress. My emotions are written all over my face. I’m naturally calm, deadpan (a little), and matter of fact. barre n9ne? Right. Up. My. Alley. One door closed, hurtfully, in a sense, at that time, but another door opened, just about 4 months later, and the rest…is history. I even think my ‘stint’ with running half marathons falls into this category. Wanting and willing for something that wasn’t me. That may never quite be me. Running for me, and my own challenges? Freeing myself of something that doesn’t fit? YES.
I guess I just have this topic in mind lately, as I have been talking to a few people, friends, family, etc, that are struggling with some goals, love, decisions, and change. And watching this episode of Joel Osteen’s ministry really reminded me, personally, to let go. Just a little bit more. To trust. And to those people struggling with some of these very same things? Please trust…whether you believe or not, trust yourself, trust this message, trust this premise. That everything truly falls into place at the right time. It may take patience, it may take courage, it may take shifting your focus and adjusting to the discomfort of leaping without a net or stepping out of the comfort zone. But no matter what? It’s almost always worth the risk.
So this is me….remembering to loosen the grip just a little bit more. To let go just a little bit more. To embrace that freedom.
Alarm clock goes off at 5:08 am (because 5:05 feels *much* earlier).
*groan. yawn. give M a kiss* (and surprised he gets up with me instead of sleeping in another hour!)
On the road by 5:20 to get to 6 am barre n9ne method class (the best way to start a Friday, I am convinced…not to mention the longest.week.ever. Felt like 49 days long or something).
*trying to psych myself up for a 3 miler post-barre with Steph, even though it’s chilly and I’m tireeddddd*
*fabulous* class 6-7 am.
Debate outdoor 3 mile loop with Steph. Know I’m tight on time, and she is too. And feeling slightly wussy in 35 degree temps when we’ve had temps in 50-70 degree range the last week. Quick change of plans: quick run at my sister Jess’s house (5 mins away, you’ll see why I’m going there anyway in a sec…).
7:21 am. Bang out 2.5 miles…wanted 3, but didn’t have time. And a shame, too, because it was actually one of those ‘can run all day’ feelings, surprisingly (even though I thought to myself, how much I didn’t *really* feel like running and if it started to feel like ‘junk miles’ I’d stop. Go figure! No junk! Whee!).
7:45 am. *Fly* through a quick shower at my sister’s with 5 minutes to spare, because I had a very important coffee date and I didn’t want to be late! So what did my lovely sister do? She packed up our obsessed favorite oatmeal into a tupperware so I could eat it as I drove (seriously, that was genius, and it was SO GOOD, even as I carefully drove and ate!).
8:09 am. I went on my merry way, grabbed two coffees on the way and made it to my other sister Jen’s by 8:32 (so I was late by 2 mins…).
Why all the rush-rush this morning? Why, to spend a cherished hour with my sister Jen and my beautiful niece Isabel, of course! (this worked out perfectly as I had a dentist appointment at 9:30 down the street, because yes, I still go to the same dentist since I was 4 years old. I do not care that it is now more than 30 miles away!).
And it was worth every minute of coordination and rush-rush to get there because Isabel was in an absolutely fabulous mood and we had the MOST fun at our auntie/sister coffee/playdate!!
A photo recap says it all:
Besides that highlight of the morning, Isabel is learning to say my name!!! She says ‘hi jo!’ if Jen says it first, and oh my Gosh, that is the cutest thing EVER to hear out of your niece’s mouth. Best. Ever!
After hugs, kisses (‘blowing kisses’ and kisses on the lips too!), and far too much fun crammed into about 50 minutes, I left my sister Jen’s house with a huge grin on my face, and waved as they waved goodbye at me from the window. My heart felt explosive with joy and love…this was by far one of my favorite memories with my niece and sister in awhile, and sometimes, it’s those unexpected moments that mean so much. It truly has been the best. Friday morning. Ever. (even with the dentist, I love getting my teeth cleaned!)
**This weekend has felt like a long time coming…lots on tap, including a sushi lunch date with some fabulous women (Jess, Meaghan and Samantha!!), a visit to my grandparents (corned beef and cabbage? YES PLEASE! No, seriously, I LOVE corned beef and cabbage and I’m not even Irish!) and much-needed catch-up time with M. Cheers friends, make it a goodie!**
NOTE: if you cannot comment on my post, I understand from WordPress that you must create a WordPress login in order to comment. It’s ass-backward if you ask me, commenting should be OPEN, but I digress. If it’s not working for you and you want to comment, that’s the only thing I’ve heard that works. Sorry, friends!
The news I’ve been dying to share but have kept under wraps until I’ve been able to share it…my sister Jess and I have just started officially training to become barre n9ne instructors. Just writing this puts a huge ass grin on my face. I think back to last May, when we won the barre n9ne studio 60 day challenge and opportunity to become spokespeople for the studio and I never in a million years would have imagined that we’d have come this far and that we’d both have such a huge opportunity like this ahead of us.
Needless to say, I am brimming with pride, happiness and determination to step into this role and make it me, through and through. I know this is a huge challenge and undertaking and will require me to devote my time and dedication (and letting go!) to capturing the essence of the barre n9ne look, feel and most importantly, signature class, barre n9ne method. It’s going to take me out of my comfort zone to say the least, but I’m ready. I’m ready to put myself out there, to learn, to hone, to make it my own. I’m ready to make Tanya and the community of instructors and clients proud, and to make them sweat (like whoa). And I’m ready to let my personality shine through, to tackle this with a positive energy, nothing fake, nothing forced, nothing ‘not’ me.
I say this last part because I think back to the instructor training we both went through two years ago for teaching Group Kick and the toughest part for me then, that I never grasped were two things: learning to cue two beats ahead of the next (highly choreographed move, I might add!) move while also putting some personality and spunk into it. I just could never break through that barrier. And I know there were a number of reasons for that, but most, I know it was the format of the style of class (highly choreographed, very , very specific cuing and rigid class format. If you were off a beat, you were off the entire track).
What’s so exciting and different about barre n9ne (among many, MANY things) is that while there is certainly a format and ‘formula’ for the class, there is a lot of ability to interchange things, to build on the base, and to continue to grow and develop the style of class to eventually be ‘mine’ but while still retaining the integrity of the barre n9ne method. As for cuing and direction? Sure, there is definitely a lot of instruction necessary to teach this class effectively and safely, but it is more relaxed in terms of timing and beats. It flows, it’s more conversational, less shouting out towards a huge room (like I was used to previously!) and more setting up the next move and then going through it.
Clearly, I could go on and on, and it’s only been one day of training with many days and hours to come, but there is no comparison to the training of past. This is a clean slate and wide open opportunity to be what I’ve always dreamt of being.
When I grow up, I wanna be a barre n9ne instructor…and today is that day.