I had to give something up this year. So I chose the gym. Even though I’m probably three slices of bacon away from a heart attack, I accepted the fact that it is better for me to just allow myself to work out on weekends or when the opportunity strikes than having to feel guilty for not making the time to go to the gym on a regular basis.
Last year was the year to Just Say No (please refer to last post entitled “Just Say No”). I was overwhelmed by having my two girls in public schools for the first time, taking on a teaching job, juggling work and home life and trying to prevent my husband from nominating me for Hoarders: Buried Alive. I said no to joining Parent Council, I said no to putting Emma in Orchestra and generally put the brakes on extending myself any further. I even stopped writing my blog, which must’ve been sad for the three of you who read it. (Hi, Patrick!).
What a difference a year makes.
I am turning 40 this year, and this year is about saying yes to things that are important, that feel right, and that make me happy. Yes, this is something that I shouldn’t need a milestone birthday to prompt me to do, but my 20s were kind of a mess and my 30s were about finding myself, so I hope that my 40s will be about me feeling comfortable in my own skin and enjoying my amazing family. #39bucketlist is a frame of mind that I use to make choices that will help get me and my family on a better path.
Where has this journey taken me so far?
I changed jobs. Like three times in one year. I’m no stranger to moving around professionally, but even this surprised/embarrassed me. It was so sad and painful to have to leave the other jobs, particularly because I really liked and respected my bosses, but in the end I arrived in the right place. The funny thing was that I didn’t even apply for my current job – I decided to say yes to a call from a recruiter for a position I felt I was overqualified for and didn’t think I wanted. It’s only been a couple of months, but it’s amazing what a difference the right job makes. I’m doing work that I love (even when it makes me want to pull my hair out – my fellow HRBPs will understand what I mean) as part of an incredibly talented, smart and hardworking team of Type A personalities. I don’t know where my career will go from here, but I absolutely know that I am in the right place right now.
I said yes to Parent Council at Emma’s school. I figured that if all three of my children end up going there, it was worth my time and energy to get involved. Now as a Parent Council Secretary, I help creating flyers, stuffing mailboxes and taking meeting minutes. But I also get an insider’s look at the school, access to the administration and an opportunity to voice my opinion.
I said yes to applying to the Disney Parks Moms Panel. Yes, that would be a third unpaid “job,” but it would allow me to write AND would legitimize my obsessive love of planning Disney trips! I only made it to the second round but met some awesome people who are equally obsessive about planning Disney trips and learned a LOT in the process. For example, nomenclature is very important to Disney. I like to think that I did not make it to the third round because I forgot to put the “Disney’s” in “Disney’s Hollywood Studios,” and not because I wasn’t “magical” enough! It was fun to see who made it through to the Panel, and I look forward to trying again in the future. It also inspired me to restart my blog and to become more active on social media.
And coming full circle back to quitting the gym, I said yes to running again. Specifically, I picked up the hobby popular with so many of my similarly aged and situated friends: running races. Please be clear – by “running races,” I mean to say “finishing races,” and short ones at that. I’ve done two 5ks so far, and would love to work my way up to a half marathon by 2016. By the way, if any of you have training plans that can get you shape to run 13.1 miles when you can only run once or twice a week, please call me!
I may not be a fast runner or on the Disney Parks Moms Panel, and I may have set myself back years in my career trajectory, but I know that all of these steps I’m taking are at least keeping the heart attacks at bay. Which is good, because I’m not ready to say no to bacon.