Wednesday, December 31, 2014

A Look Back & A Step Forward

So…I am stepping back into my blog. I took a time out with some life events and adjustments that needed to remain private. There has been a whole lot of “life” that has happened to me in the past six months. I have learned more in these months about life, myself & the people in my life than I thought a person could ever learn in such a short time. Today, I step out of my comfort zone & open up a little & share. Share what I’ve seen & how I’ve grown. Today, I might remind some that you never really know what is hidden behind someone’s smile. Today, I commit to getting back to my blog for 2015… in it, I promise to be real, even when it’s ugly, and it will encompass my healthy living & running but life as a whole too. 

 The biggest lesson I’ve learned is that you will never know how strong a relationship truly is until you find yourself at your lowest. You’ll never know if you’re truly important to someone in your life, until you find yourself alone & in need of help. You’ll never know if you cry out for help if anyone will hear you. You will think that those who you thought would always be there for you, usually aren’t. You will lose friendships & relationships. You will see that someone you thought was a friend is suddenly just an acquaintance. I now believe that I no longer have the time or energy or even the emotions to spend on anything that is fake or is less than mediocre. I no longer want to spend my time with a group of people who make you feel like you are all alone when you are actually in a room filled with people & alone is the last thing you should feel. This feeling is one of the absolute worst feelings I believe one can feel. But, day in & day out, your eyes open up to the truth. 

Yes, I find it sad to lose people as you grow. I have many treasured memories & life events shared with some of these. But I refuse to keep my eyes closed and not see that some are only there for you because they think they have to be, when it's convenient, when time are easy, when you are just like them & fit inside their world,  or only when the spotlight is on you.

 But while you lose people in life, you will gain new ones or those that were truly there for you become stronger than ever. You find your rocks in life. Those random messages from real friends that just say “hope your day is going better today” or “just thinking about you & love you” or “hey, let’s go get a drink & catch up. I miss you” become smiles in your day. You will have old friends that once were distant with life come back into your life like you have never missed a beat together.  You will see who your family & friends are. The ones who just love you for YOU & not for who they thought you were or wanted you to be. JUST YOU. These are the relationships you will protect & treasure as you move forward on to the next chapter of your life. 

This was a year of true personal strength. There were so many moments this year I found myself at my lowest of lows & often alone at those times. All of Laynee’s medical tests and appointments this year were such a struggle, a mom filled with the deepest of fears with tests of very scary scenarios or diseases or cancers, sitting alone and waiting. Again those moments of messages from those who cared meant more to me than they will ever understand….just to know someone was taking the time out of their day to care & pray for you & your baby, never “too busy” to stop & reach out. They actually bring tears to my eyes again just thinking of them, to know I wasn’t truly alone, they were with me. I have prayed for answers, prayed for progress, prayed for possibilities; we have been shot down many times. The most recent being when her physical therapist looked at me & told me there was no point in continuing as we had yet to make any real progress.  I had high hopes for her PT, so as a mom hearing that, I again felt deflated for “Team Laynee.” We have thankfully ruled out many scary possibilities, however the girl does have daily things she has to do that none of us would want & this spring we will be meeting again with her surgeon after these couple of rounds of research currently to explore some possible surgery options. We sure make a great team & I count my blessings daily that she is still so healthy compared to so many.  

The biggest lesson I learned this year was about my relationship with myself. I don’t want to share too many personal details that shouldn’t be shared publicly. But, I had a lot of work to do on me. Krisha was buried, for years, she lived her days hiding so much & truly believed she wasn’t important & was weighed down by so many negative thoughts & feelings, never feeling like she was enough. That is all I will say here out of respect of not sharing too much. 

But, at the beginning of 2014, I looked in the mirror & admitted I was tired. I was tired of not being me. I needed to find Krisha again. I needed to be me. I needed to be me for me, but also for my girls. I was not the woman I wanted them to look up to and admire. So...I slowly made changes. Mile after mile ran, I unburied myself a little more with every step. I began to feel life again, I began to feel everything, at times too deeply…I used to be a deep complex thinker, a girl who could write words in a way that would stir one’s emotions…I found her again….sometimes feeling that deep can be a curse along with a blessing. But, either way, I made progress with every mile I ran & began to feel again. 

I realized that in order to fix the empty nothingness, the broken feelings, I had to make changes. I had to move forward. I had to let go. I had to turn the page I was stuck on…the page I had tried to rewrite a million times with no success. I had to dig deeper than ever to get the page to turn. 

I realize many people think I am obsessed with running. (Of course my argument first being….you can sit & watch TV for 2 hours, while I run, but somehow I am the one with an unhealthy obsession?!) I owe running so much, it’s a relationship that has certainly given more than I’ll ever realize. It was running that allowed me to find myself again. It was on the road & the trails that I found my strength. It was out there putting one foot in front of the other that I built my confidence back up & realized I was enough. I began to believe I could do anything I wanted if I put my mind to it.

There are experts out there that say that a runner, especially a newer one like me, who trains for a marathon all by themselves with no training group or running buddy, doesn’t usually complete the task. I read that at the beginning of my training. But I felt this was a journey I needed to take on my own. It was a journey of many miles all alone. I was the only one that I could depend on. I was the only one who could say stop or keep going. I was the only one that could make myself do it. It was all me. Every single step. Out there training I had way more failures than successes. I fell short more times than not. I wanted to quit a million times. I told myself I wasn’t good enough or strong enough. But, I dug deeper. I knew in order to turn that page that I could not get rewritten in a positive way, I had to keep moving. There was no other choice. The training journey was alone. The drive to the marathon was alone. The pre-race was alone. It struck me how alone the journey had truly been throughout the race. When I saw so many families & kids with signs proud of their runner throughout the miles, I had tears. But I reminded myself that I was proud of myself now & that is what I had to focus on, so as always, I trudged on to the finish line. At the finish line was when my tears I had held back all race came down as I had one of the biggest surprises in my life & a moment I will treasure always with my daughter & her best friend jumping out in front of me along the side of my best friend. I was never really alone, I had cheerleaders cheering me on, I had angels pushing me when I wanted to quit. 

My life is my journey. I know that many will not understand it, will not try to understand it, or will just simply pass judgment. But, I’ve learned that this is okay. I don’t allow this to bother me anymore. I don’t live my life so that others can understand it or so that it fits inside a “box” like others. My goal is to live a life filled with my loved ones creating memories, laughing, spreading true smiles, supporting, and sharing much love.

So in 2015, I start the page of a new chapter. 2014 has taught me to not hide who I am or how I am feeling anymore. It taught me to never let Krisha disappear again. It reminded me that sometimes you just have to be your own biggest fan. It proved that you can face some dark fears alone & make it through them. It allowed me to hit some lows but to climb back up the hill. It pushed me when I felt I was stuck in the middle of the ocean with no shore in sight & my arms & legs were tired of swimming & screaming to give up. It encouraged me to get out of my comfort zone & allow magic to happen. It gave me the blessings of many, many true & wonderful friendships. It saddened me at how many relationships I had to lose along the way. I started to believe that I am enough. It made me see I need to surround myself with those people who believe in me & encourage me to grow. It allowed me to grow to be a strong, independent woman who is back to living life as fully as one can with a true smile & holding the hands of her two beautiful babies who are the most wonderful blessings she will ever have. 

So I will write my next chapter. The page has turned. The previous chapter has ended. Today I take all of life’s lessons & put one foot in front of the other. I will walk tall & proud, for I love the woman I am now. I fought hard to become her & the most important lesson I have learned is that I need to love myself first. 

 Happy New Year, my friends! May your 2015 be filled with love & laughter & may you create memories to cherish forever!
 Until Next Time