Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Forty For Real

For my birthday this year I decided to go ahead and turn 40. While I never lied about the year I was born, I have had a more flexible outlook on my "age". I learned this lesson from my grandmother, who I'm pretty sure had managed to muddy the water so much that no one knew exactly how old she was. She had the advantage of having her birth records literally go up in flames when the courthouse caught fire, so she could be as flexible as she wanted. 

She told me many times that age was just a number. So you might as well just pick one you like!

When I turned 27 I decided to go ahead and just be 29. Then I hung out at 29 till I was 35. Then I stayed at my calendrical age (What? That could totally be a word!) for two years and when turning 37 I just went ahead and claimed 39. 

See, that's the real secret, muddying the waters early. After a bit even I don't know my real age. Office forms at the doc? No problem! I just fill in my birthdate and tell them to do the math. (Just don't tell me!)

Anyway, I'd originally thought to stay 39 for a few more years, but that's so done, you know? Besides it's not every year you get to enter a whole new decade! So now I'm 40. And I'm owning it.

Now, for my birthday I thought a bit about what I wanted, and I told the kids that I wanted to "not yell" for my birthday. Now at first I thought this was a clever gift idea. You know, free, something they could deliver. But it got me thinking. Not yelling feels really good! I was in the mindset that it was my birthday and so I was getting my "not yelling" gift. But really it wasn't something the kids could necessarily give me. It was something I could give myself! And, if I so chose, I could give it to myself EVERY day!

So that became my new goal: not yelling. 

New decade, new goals, amiright?

And while I've slipped a few times, yesterday was a rough day, I have to say I have been doing a pretty stellar job of it. 

I was honest with the kids, telling them I was trying really hard to not lose my temper and yell. I figure showing them that Momma is human and has self-improvement goals she's working on is good for them, and it helps make me more accountable too. 

At one point Saturday morning, while Daddy was having a little sleep-in and I was doing dishes, the kids were being wild and going fighty-screamy-bonker-cakes in the livingroom, which drives me straigh up the nearest wall. It was close, and I had to sing a song to myself about keeping my power and staying serene for about 15 minutes, but I did it!

Here's hoping I can keep it up! I think we'll all be happier for it. Especially me.

Now, I made another goal on Wednesday this week. I'd been working on wrapping my head around it for a while, but I finally actually started. I know it's small, but give me a little credit for making the first baby steps here. 

I started exercising.

Don't get too excited now! It's only a 10 minute thing right now. My doc actually suggested only 5 minutes to start, but going around the block takes me about 10-12 minutes, so that's my baseline to start. 

We started with a walk around the block when I got home. Daddy was finishing up cooking dinner, so we threw on shoes and I took the kids around the block. We learned about walking on the sidewalk, walking against traffic when there is no sidewalk, looking both ways, which trees were crepe myrtles, and probably a few more things along the way. We walked it the first day. The second day we let Nick take his bike. 

We'll work up to the girls taking bikes maybe. 

We had two days where we went to a nearby park and I walked in circles around the playground while they played.

We had a rainy day when a walk wasn't going to happen, so instead I danced with the kids for 10 minutes. Whew! You'd never know I used to be able to continuously dance from 11pm to 2am in college! But I'm sure if I keep this up it will make a difference.

The only other thing I added in are push-up against the wall. Only 10 to start. I'm terrified of injuring myself. And for good reason between my twiness elbow in both arms from 2011-2012 and a bout of trochanteric bursitis that put me in a wheelchair for a week in 2009. But I figure if I start slow, but steady, then I can build up to more. 

The main thing, according to Dr K, is to make it a habit. Build in into my daily routine. So that's what I'm aiming for right now. Exercise has never EVER been a part of my routine. So this will take some doing. But I'm doing it! 


Anonymous said...

Wow! I am so proud of you!!! You have inspired me to try a bit of exercise each day again too. I am with you about not wanting to cause old injuries to act up but if we are mindful and careful, we will be fine. I love the pics of the children on your walks around the block. Love you bunches and bunches and more! xxooMom/Grammie:)