I am an Army wife and my husband is currently deployed. Let’s just get it out there now because this fact alone is likely to plague more of my postings than I care to admit for at least the next few months. This is because we also have two young boys, ages 6 and 3 . . . and I also work full-time as a prosecutor of environmental crimes. So, who am I really – I believe that depends on the day (sometimes the time of day) and who is asking:
Some days I am a hockey mom, yelling, “Go, go, go, go, NOW” at 8 am every Saturday and Sunday morning from September to March (seriously, why in the world is hockey season so flippin’ long and why didn’t anyone tell me this?) to get my little men out the door so that I can march into the bowels of the hockey rink to assist my eldest son (and likely the youngest by next year), into some of the most complex sporting equipment I have ever experienced in my life.
Some days I am a government lawyer, in the office by 7 am (or as close as I can reasonably get to it), trying to juggle my myriad of cases from asbestos crimes to Clean Water Act offenses to hazardous waste violations. Our cases are complex and interesting, but I enjoy the daily challenge. I also, quite frankly, appreciate the dichotomy in my workplace, where yelling, “WTF?!” (the actual words, not just the acronym) not only fails to offend anyone, but is the norm.
Some days I am the working mom who only has time to run during lunchtime a few days a week, but who loves every minute of those runs (well, most of the minutes) because it is the time of day when I meet up with my other working mom running friends to commiserate about life (this working mom thing – not so easy; that stay-at-home mom thing – possibly harder; those toddler fits – really flippin’ irritating; those kids of ours – really darn funny and cute) and work.
Some days I am the Army wife, married for over 13 years, who misses her husband so much some days it physically hurts. We are currently enduring our third deployment, as we have at every stage of our relationship (newlyweds(ish) in 2002; with our first child in 2007; and with two children in 2013; and if you count the deployment right before we were engaged (in 1998), I suppose it is technically our fourth). Each deployment becomes progressively more challenging and each time I wonder how I can possibly continue to do this. I have told my husband that if he makes General, I will let him stay in past the twenty years. We will see how that goes . . .
On this crazy roller coaster of life and motherhood, some days I am utterly in love with my children and laugh hysterically at them and with them. Some days, I need a break so badly, I find myself in tears at how challenging raising well-behaved (ha!), hard-working, respectful, caring boys can be (do they have re-chargable battery packs or something – how in the world do they have so much energy ALL the time?
Seriously, someone should study this!). Most days, I am really just doing the best I can and trying not to screw up my children too badly. One thing I know I am not – I am not perfect, nor would I ever want to be. Perfect is boring; flaws are interesting (or so I tell myself) – otherwise, what would we possibly have to talk about?
My main fitness goal at the present time – as un-PC as this likely sounds – is simply not to get fat. Just don’t get fat. There will come a time when I can go out for a run whenever I want, try out a new yoga class, or get up in the morning and head out to a spinning class. This is not that time. Instead, I fit in a run, a quick workout, or a bike ride with my kids when I can. My goal is to remain sane (to the extent I currently fall into that category), to be reasonably fit, and teach my children the importance of being active, supporting each other, and having fun.
To further those general goals, I am joining the “Girls Gone 40” challenge to run 40k of races in the year before I turn 40. I just turned 39, so that year starts . . . NOW! However, the details of how I plan to meet that goal are a little loose right now. My general idea is to run one 10k, a half-marathon, and maybe another 10k or two 5ks. I would love to do a 5k with my six-year-old, but that will require some training for him. My workouts for the week almost exclusively take place over a 30-minute lunch break and my goal each week is to workout five days/week. That usually entails three days of running (~3 miles each running day) and two days of either yoga, free weights, or some workout video. Some weeks I meet that goal and some weeks I don’t come close. See above for why that might be. For me, at this time in my life, I think “success” is measured on a weekly and sometimes daily basis — did I get in a workout or not and if not, when can I next get one in?
When my husband returns, I will have time for longer weekend runs and can set my sites on more specific goals and races. Right now, it’s just about maintenance, being reasonably fit, and, as I said, staying relatively sane. I’ll let you know how that goes . . .