I’m thinking this morning, as the expected but anachronistic snow is coming down and starting to coat the cars in the parking lot, about roles. Family roles. It’s Mother’s Day. My mom has called the day off on account of snow, so we’re not driving the seven minutes over to see her, nor taking her out to eat. We talked on the phone, and she, as ever, is working on something (they cleaned out their refrigerator before 9am and my father is going to make her dinner – which is nigh unheard of. Everything is rescheduled for next Sunday when the crowds will be less and the sun should be out. Instead of the usual, springy celebrations this day should bring, I’m in bed, drinking my low-carb shake, getting my thoughts together.
My little sister who has this page’s URL, but I’m a thousand percent sure is not going to see this, posted on facebook a picture of she and her boyfriend who ran her first 5K this morning. She looks beautiful and beaming and I don’t, I’m happy to say, have a twinge of anything other than support for her. Because somehow time (and the therapy) has done enough to make me realize that the petty issues of my youth are wasting and exhausting and not based on anything other than my own expectations. But what I did think and what I am pondering now, is why am I not allowed to think about wanting to run a 5K?
Do I want to run a 5K? No? Not really. Running has never been my thing, be it as breasticularly-amplified individual or because I’d rather a thousand other things first, but the fact is, I feel confident I’m not allowed to want to run a 5K. Because I am not the exercisey/outdoorsy one. Because I’ve got my grandmother’s roly-poly genes. Because if I fitspo on tumblr and try and model myself after flat-abs girls who peel up their shirts to show off their stomachs, I will both lose my own character and become like the people who made me feel so shitty in school, so not of value because At the time, my little sister being one. But things change, wow, do things change. Now she’s like…a friend. And advocate who’s going to do this Atkins thing with me for a bit.
So all of these mental bylaws that I set-up when I was twelve and I’m being held to have to be amended. because I am way out of balance with myself and what I want. Which may or may not be running a 5K.
But it might be walking one.
That doesn’t sound bad to me. It is definitely about being able to enjoy walking around in Italy without feeling nervous about how my body can adjust to the increase in activity. That sounds important and good to me. Not eating until I feel dizzy and exhausted and need to pass out just to survive the stress and loneliness and anxiety of my daily life. That sounds really excellent. To stop feeling like I have a type or a role that I have to fulfill to curry favor or justify my existence. That if I, too, start to spend time on my body, I’m not rescinding my right to be nerdy and geeky and in love with birdsong and the will-o-wisps and words and the untold stories of the world. That I’m not trying to usurp anybody’s anything. That people are not bouncers – keeping you out of the club of life you want to be in. That’s a shitty metaphor. Still. To figure out how to become stronger, mentally, so that whether I lose a pound or thirty or gain a thousand, I don’t treat the gazes, expressions, or opinions of others as deciding factors when it comes to how I live my life.