An interesting take on how to measure success

Hello!

Happy Wednesday!

(It seriously feels like it should be Thursday. Why is it not Thursday?)

So, there’s this article that’s been circulating on Facebook. Have you seen it?

It’s called, “20 Signs You’re Succeeding In Life Even If You Don’t Feel You Are.”

It’s actually pretty interesting.

Success is not always measured by how much money you make (not enough!) and what kind of car you drive (a paid off one, thankyouverymuch!) or other physical things/objects.

Success can be measured by intangibles. Bet you never thought of that, did you? I know I didn’t.

Out of the 20 signs, there were a few that really resonated with me. Like, they made me stop and think about how much I’ve grown and changed over the years (thank goodness!) and what really drove some of those changes.

(And just so you aren’t confused, I’m numbering them the way they are in the article. I didn’t forget how to count.)

1. Your relationships are less dramatic than they used to be.

Boy, oh boy, is that true!  And she’s not just talking about your relationship with your significant other – it goes for friends, too. That drama may be fun when you’re young and every feeling is just so magnified and love hurts you down to the follicles of your hair but, sheesh, who’s got time for that when there’s kids to raise, jobs to go to, bills & mortgages to pay, and LIFE to be LIVED? And those friends that just reek of drama? You know the ones – the ones who are angry about anything and everything, the ones who complain about all manner of things (even if it’s their own damn fault), the ones who pull the “woe is me” card all the time. I mean, I get it – been there, done that, got the scar/stitches on my heart/psyche but…..isn’t it time to let it go? Grow up a little? Leave the teenage drama for the teenagers? #justsayin

3. You have raised your standards.

I don’t know when it happened but it did. All of a sudden, I expect people to behave like mature, normal human beings (see #1) and I hold them accountable for their actions. I mean, I don’t make promises I can’t keep and I treat people the way I want to be treated and I want the same in return. I deserve it. And, if you want to act a fool, ain’t no one got time fo dat!

5. You have moments where you appreciate who you see in the mirror.

Well, I’ll be honest. It definitely took some time to get to this point. Too MUCH time, if you ask me. Seriously, I was 38 when I decided I was okay JUST THE WAY I AM. That, coincidentally (or not), was when I got my first tattoo. For me. About me. She’s (me) got my back. I wish I had realized that I’m pretty awesome back when I was younger. THAT would have saved a lot of grief, stress, broken hearts, time with people who didn’t think the same thing and weren’t worth it. But, all of that made me who I am today so, in retrospect, I’m okay with it. And now that I like me, I do more things for me and I enjoy them!

I should add, I was 38 when I got back into running and ran my first marathon. 🙂

8. You don’t complain much.

The article states, “Because you know there really is nothing to complain about. Unless you really have gone through some horrific life experience and had unimaginable losses, most of what we all experience on a day-to-day basis is just mundane. And successful people know that. And they live in a space of gratitude.”

Exactly. (also, see #1)

Life’s too short to complain, especially about something ridiculous or that you can’t change. (in the article, see #17 and #18)

16. You don’t care what other people think.

Well, I’ve mostly got this one. I spent so much time worrying about what other people thought that it’s kind of a hard habit to break but, yeah, Dr. Seuss said it best:

“Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.”

I actually have that written on a sticky note above my computer at my desk. Sometimes, it helps to have that reminder so I don’t fall back into old habits. One

Worrying about what other people think isn’t likely to change their opinion, anyway. The only person’s happiness you are ultimately responsible for is your own. Make yourself happy. You deserve it.

Talk to me: What do you think? Which signs do you see in your life? 

Balancing work & fitness & life

Hello! Happy Wednesday!

It’s an extra special Wednesday over here! My sailor and I got married on this day 18 years ago!

image

Awww, weren’t we cute? 😉 We look so young!

We don’t have anything specific planned but you can bet your boots we’re going to drink some excellent wine!

So, as you know, I’m back to work this week and I am totally loving my new job!

I’m in the “training” phase so my work hours are subject to change (maybe) in the future. Right now, I’m getting in between 6:30-6:45 am. That makes a morning tempo run or speedwork session a little difficult. Especially since that stupid gopher saw his stupid shadow and we have 6 more weeks of winter. Brrrr!

image

So, I’ve switched my running to after work. And that’s great! Except I’m really more of a morning runner. :/

I know, I know….. I need to stop complaining. But, it’s what my body is used to so switching it up is a really big change! So, I went for a run after work yesterday. Because it’s important to me – it’s part of who I am.

image

I was supposed to do speedwork (4×1000) but just felt like going for a run. It felt great to get out. Thank goodness all the snow got washed away by the rain.

Then, I did 100 burpees. Cuz, you know, I’m hardcore.

Have you been keeping up with your burpees? What number are you on? 😉

Of course, I had to do my #CoreCommit challenge, too. So, that was 100 sit-ups.

Phew!

By the time I was done, I was totally wiped out!

Honestly, if I hadn’t meal prepped on Sunday, we probably would have eaten cereal for dinner. :/

Oh, fine. Who am I kidding? We totally had pancakes for dinner last night. And they were yummy!

But seriously, meal prep and planning is definitely going to have to become a habit if I stay on the early shift. I’ll be getting back into a CrossFit box soon and with running after work instead of before, I’m not going to be in the mood to create a meal on the fly. So, look for more Sunday meal prep inspiration from me!

Talk to me: How do you balance work, whether inside or outside the home, with your fitness goals & schedule?

It’s interesting to me that I’m encountering a difficult balance at this point. My kids are grown – one’s even out on her own! – and my life is pretty easy. I guess it’s just difficult because I’ve been working out before work for so long. I’d love to get out and run before I head to work but I leave the house at 6. And, I’m not real sure about the neighborhood in the wee hours of the morning. Lots of dogs out roaming on their own. I’m not trying to get bit by a dog. Been there, done that. :/

I know my “issues”are much simpler than what many people go through on a daily basis. Health & fitness is important and, all too often, it falls to the side at the expense of carting children around to various activities, family time, etc. I believe all that stuff is super important! I’m lucky that my kids are older. But, when they were younger and my sailor was deploying, that balancing act was really tough. It’s important to make time for YOU – even if it’s just 10 minutes of burpees or whatever. Park far away from the grocery store entrance so you get a walk in. Do something for YOU and your body. Your health will appreciate it. 🙂

– jennifer

The harsh reality of life

Hello.

I know.  There’s no exclamation point.

It’s actually a great day!  I’m alive, I’m happy (mostly – keep reading), and I’m healthy (well, except for the toothache business but I’m trying really hard not to think about that) and I had a great workout this morning!

But, two very real, very disturbing things happened in my world yesterday.

One had a direct effect on people I love and the other, well, it’s harder to pinpoint how many people I know and love were affected by it.

So, yesterday, while I was at lunch, I saw a tweet from Thing 2’s BFF (aka Thing 3. I love this girl like she is my own child.) that made me stop dead in my tracks.

Her school was on lockdown because someone had a gun and she was hiding under a desk and scared shitless.

My heart didn’t know if it should drop to the pit of my stomach or rise up and get stuck in my throat.

I immediately sent her a text message.  I figured if she could tweet, then she could text.

I also started looking up news stories regarding it and found some other entities that were tweeting about it and started watching those.

I tried to keep her calm by just chatting about random stuff and giving her some updates that I was getting so she wouldn’t feel so helpless under that desk.

She was under that desk for about an hour while police searched the campus.

The result?  I don’t know.  The all clear was sounded but nothing was said about apprehending a suspect.

What, exactly, does that mean?

Does that mean he got away?  It is an open campus, surrounded by trees and well-spaced out neighborhoods (read: large, wooded plots) on one side and a regular residential neighborhood on the other (read: postage stamp sized yards, mowed & edged yards, etc).  There are many places he could have gone.  And, depending on the response time of the authorities, who knows if he was even still on campus by the time they arrived?

I say “he” because that was the description of the suspect.

Or, could it have been a false report?  Maybe someone didn’t want to take a test and needed a diversion?  Isn’t that just awful to think about?  But, it’s a very real possibility.  Rumors spread like wildfires through high school and all one person has to do is say something and, the next thing you know, it’s all over the internet.

I honestly believe this was a real, not false, threat and that’s very, very scary.

And, it begs more questions.

Who was this boy and why did he bring a gun to school? And, BIG, IMPORTANT QUESTION – Why did he have a gun in the first place?  Where are the responsible adults?  Who are the responsible adults?

Was this kid a gang member coming to collect on something?  Was he a prospective gang member completing an induction type task? Like, “Hey, go to the high school and scare the shit out of the kids. Bonus points if you shoot someone.” Or was he a student who had a grudge?  Or, maybe just a student who has his own personal issues and was acting out, looking for attention and ran when he realized that maybe he had made a bad choice?

I don’t want to get into a discussion about gun laws – that’s not the purpose of this post.  I’m not trying to have a political discussion.

I was scared.  I was scared FOR her and all of those other kids who are just there to learn and socialize (seriously, it’s high school – teenagers are social!).  I was scared for my daughter – even though they don’t go to the same school, that could just as easily have happened to her. I felt slightly helpless.  Okay, I felt very helpless.  Thing 3 is miles and miles away from me and there wasn’t anything I could do to help her other than text her.  I couldn’t go get her and hold her and help keep her safe and take her to her mother.

It’s a very harsh reality to be presented with.  We can try hard to protect our children but, no matter what, you can’t do it or be there ALL of the time.  And, it’s a scary world.  You think you live in a safe area, town, city, or neighborhood but you don’t really know what’s going on in the heads of your neighbors.  You can stay out of the “dangerous” areas of town where crime, drugs, and prostitution run rampant but, when you send a child to school, you don’t expect that to be a “danger zone.”  I mean, there’s that saying, “it takes a village….”  It’s true but you don’t always truly know who lives in your village. Or near it. Or might be driving through it.

I was very unhappy.  So relieved when it was over and the all clear was given but, again, miles and miles away so a virtual hug had to suffice.  And, yes, Thing 2 learned what was happening and called me stressed out about it, making sure I knew – she needed me to know and she needed to talk about it.

And then, last night, I saw a disturbing image on Facebook.  It was a shared image with the comment, “I hope they find this…..”

It was a photo of a teenage girl holding a baby wrapped in a bath towel pointing a gun at her head.

No. I am NOT. KIDDING.

This image had actually been posted on Facebook and people thought sharing it was a good idea.

NO.  THAT’S NOT A GOOD IDEA.

Reporting the photo is a much better idea.

NOT TAKING THE PHOTO WOULD HAVE BEEN THE BEST IDEA!

But, again, kids with guns.

WHERE ARE THE PARENTS?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?

So, I reported the photo to Facebook as offensive.

I woke up this morning to the following response from Facebook:

“We reviewed your report of (so-and-so’s) photo and this photo wasn’t removed.”

It. Wasn’t. Removed.

Because, you know, photos of people pointing guns at baby’s heads aren’t offensive or graphically violent at all.

(potty mouth alert) WHAT. THE. F$!#?????

I don’t know which is more disturbing.

The image itself (Honestly, I wish I’d never seen it. I can’t get it out of my head.), the fact that people ACTUALLY SHARED IT so more people could see it, or that Facebook wouldn’t remove it.

I just don’t understand.

I just want to go home and hug my kids.

I’d hug yours too, if I thought they needed it. (no, I’m not a random hugger – I don’t hug people I don’t know. That’s creepy. And wrong.)

Thanks for reading my rant.  I really needed to get all of that out.

Feel free to share your thoughts but, again, I’m not trying to have a political discussion about gun control. It’s not that I don’t want to discuss the issue – it’s just that sometimes it’s very difficult to discuss it peacefully.  People tend to feel very strongly one way or another and I don’t feel like having an argument.  I just wanted to share my thoughts and frustrations on what happened yesterday.

I’m done.  Regularly scheduled fun posts with pictures shall resume immediately. 🙂

– jennifer