Sunday, January 27, 2019

Marie Kondo helps me find relationships that "spark joy"

          I Marie Kondo'ed my closet yesterday. I absolutely love my new closet; I can find everything and anything I need in seconds, even in the dark for those mornings when I have to work early and no one is yet up! But, I also feel like I "tidied up" in my own personal life this year. I held each relationship close to my heart and asked, "Does it spark joy?" and painfully sifted each accordingly, at times, not in very conscious ways.

        I have found that no matter how much you may adore someone, love alone will never guarantee that the relationship will function smoothly, or even survive. If a relationship begins to have piling unrealistic expectations, and/or accumulating unresolved gripes, and/or incredibly painful exchange of words, and to top it off, both sides are terrified of addressing the proverbial, "elephants in the room" (each time an "elephant" is present,) not much can be done to save it, sadly, not even love. For this reason, I have come to view arguments as the relationship's way of "taking out the garbage". Arguments should not be feared, should not be avoided ever. My husband and I argue quite a bit. Not in a yelling way, not in a mean r a violent way. We both argue our points passionately and openly and we always come to some middle ground in the end, most times within half an hour. We use to argue a lot more, not so much anymore. But when we do argue these days we both have instinctually learned not 'hit below the belt', which pretty much means no psychoanalyzing the other, and not touching on known triggers, which we all have by the way. When we apologize, and we both always apologize, we truly let it go from that hug moving forward. It's like setting a reset button. 

          It's quite easy actually, and now that I have done the tidying up of my home, I can see how it also helps in tidying up my heart. Every single person in our lives either sparks joy within us, or not. I have so much love for everyone in my life, past and present. The love pour out of me and into the world and makes me feel connected to everyone and everything, that is always a constant. But each person in our life, no matter how I feel towards them, also brings up a set of feelings in each of us, that matter A LOT to our daily sanity. When my actions and words are congruent to what's in my heart, which they always are, and I am still seen/defined as either broken, angry, or sad there is very little I want from those interactions. We get the freedom to define ourselves ONLY, and no one else. The minute another feels free to tell you your worth or define to you who you are to you, and without your permission...., the relationship is no longer conducive to success. 

            Been practicing wild acceptance of myself these past few months. The premise is 'what would happen if I were just me to everyone, would they still love me? or would they require me to become their version of what I should be. I am all the things I have ever been accused of and more. I am so tired of trying to be other people's versions of me and feeling miserable for always failing them. Who wants to always be wrong? Despite my "horrible failings" I have found a tribe of love, finally. It's what they say about used clothes, one man's garbage, is another man's treasure. Instead of feeling shitty always that I am not who others expect me to be, I will simply be me and see who sticks by me.... it's been wild..... but lots of new adventures await. At least it's not a lonely journey. 


Tuesday, January 15, 2019

5 reasons I LOVE Topos

I have found the love of my life....topos. All runners want to find that one sneaker that feel amazing, and I found it!! 

I have 3 paint of TOPOS that rotate on my runs. I have decided to list all the reasons I am in love with these shoes. 

1. My toes have space to not only not feel crowded but they can also move around freely, and I don't have narrow feet, I have regular feet. 

2. The women's colors do not one in stupid traditional female colors. The shoes are easy on the eyes. 

3. The rock plate on the shoes bend with my feet. At least you don't feel like your feet have to conform to the shoes. NO!! the shoes conform to my feet 

4. They are made to last. I have run in them for many races and they do not show signs of wear and tear as fast as other sneakers I have used. The shape the sneakers also remain true to form no matter the abuse. I am used to having sneakers that start tearing away at the edges, so this is a nice change!

5. No extra padding. My feet move the way they need to move to stay healthy. I get both support but I also get the flexibility to build foot strength over time. 

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

"The aliveness is staying in a verb"- resolutions of 2019

        I normally have a huge long list of resolutions for the New Year, but no, this year I have two very simple resolutions. Normally, I focus on what I don't want, and list them all, yet, this year I am only focusing on what I do want, and I mean ONLY.FOCUSING.ON.WHAT.I.WANT...nothing else. I want to feel at home in all situations, I want to be surrounded by people who know me, trust me and value me with all my imperfections, I want to navigate doubtless with my intentions close to my heart and be present for my loved ones.....really present. But back to my two resolutions. 

Resolution #1, I resolve to make my comfort level priority in all situations. If something does not feel right, speak up; if a person makes me feel lesser, move away,  if a situation irks me, look at it closer, don't just meek away into mouse-dom. Comfort is the meter by which the instincts speak to one's soul. Whether the people around me understand or not is not the focus. I've come to an age where I can no longer carry both my own expectations of what my life should be and the expectations of those around me of what my life should look like. If there's enough love in a relationship, it will survive the claiming of my own voice, it will allow me to find comfort in my own space. 

Resolution #2, I resolve to make art often, with whatever media, anytime and to make sure to share it with whomever wants to make it with me in whatever way they can participate. I also vow to only worry about making and not to worry about what happens to them after they are made; to give away creativity as it builds and to keep the creative give and take conduit moving to allow for more and more creativity to arise in me. In the past, overly focusing on how my work makes sense to others or in the larger picture has thwarted my creativity. 

         This past year has been good to me, I finished a 50 mile race, I passed my National Boards (which means a huge bonus of $5,000 and a substantial pay increase at work), I ran 775 miles and did over 55 hours of weight lifting. This year I also did some super amazing works at school with my students and have felt the most at home in my body, more than I ever have before. BUT, I think I am just at the beginning of some more great things ahead. I am taking my teaching to another level in 2019, I am running a 62-mile race, I am traveling to 2 states to run races and am going to not feel guilty having fun doing it. I am going to eat better for my body type, yet, not obsess about it, I am going to laugh more, dance more, say yes more and make zero decisions out of fear. So you see, as good as 2018 was to me, 2019 will be MUCH, much better and it will be so because I am in charge of me, because I am choosing the verbs this time. In the words of Poet and author, Mark Nepo, "The aliveness is in staying in a verb." I am the verb this