In my dreams, I am a hiker. There is a mountain in my back yard and I climb it every morning. I never have to worry about calories or working out, because my daily treks through rugged terrain leave me looking like Kim Kardashian, except Irish.
Realistically, though, I look more like Chris Farley with long hair. I sweat profusely in the heat and I get purple-faced when I exercise even the slightest bit. Jogging back and forth at Monday’s softball practice probably left all the parents wondering if I lived in a van down by the river.
I’m ashamed to admit that over the course of the past 2 years, I’ve slowly but steadily packed on, oh, probably about 40 pounds. Hmmm. It’s also been roughly 2 years since I’ve done any heavy drinking. (see also: Transformed.) Coincidence?
I think not.
In the spring of 2009, I stopped relying on alcohol to get me through life. I replaced it with coffee. And Cherry Coke. And volunteer activities. And not sleeping. And not exercising. And lots more coffee. And painting. And playing. And praying.
And also, coffee.
It’s been a great 2 years. I’ve been more mentally present at home. I’ve been more involved in the community. It goes without saying that I’m a way better mother to my kids.
But I got fat.
Yeah, I said it. This extra meat on my bones? It snuck up on me–and it’s not a good thing. I’m tired. I’m easily winded. I’m lazy. I’m not fitting into my favorite clothes anymore. I may or may not feel myself slipping into a nasty cycle of depression and/or anxiety. I’m coming up with conspiracy theories left and right. I can’t focus on anything and I can’t seem to get words from my brain to my mouth. And I’m totally wigging out about diabetes and heart disease, since genetics have not exactly been kind to any of my blood-relatives.
Where do people find their balance when they’re faced with responsibilities like family and church and work? How do they find the time to take care of themselves? What areas do they slack in? Do they give up sleep for prayer time? Exercise for sleep? Or prayer time for exercise? And I totally haven’t even mentioned showering and dental hygeine yet!
So. Now it’s out there–I am struggling. I’m trying, but it’s freaking hard.
In the past few weeks I’ve managed to exercise with some regularity. I hit the abandoned golf course with my old tennis shoes and my hit-or-miss MP-3 player. I walk the path over those mini-hills, and I feel great…3 hours after I’m home, on the couch, with my ice-water. It’s no hiking in the mountains, eh? But it’s a start. And I will get there.
So I’m open to any suggestions on a killer new trail name.