Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Don't mock. Too hard.

A friend invited me over to an essential oils class/party thing yesterday.

Normally, I'm really skeptical about any kind of doctor conspiracy!/pharmaceuticals are out to get us! kinds of products, but I'll tell you what. When I used to get migraines, sometimes the only thing that was effective was this peppermint oil I bought for a bazillion dollars an ounce and rubbed on my temples and under my nose. I still don't think that all the doctors have a conspiracy going, and I still think that pharmaceutical companies that spend billions of dollars on failed medicines have to make up for that research by charging lots of money for the few successes they do have.

But some stuff? I think some good stuff really is discounted just because it's for hippies and Europeans.

So I went with an open mind. And not only did I like this stuff; I loved it. I tried some sore muscle cream on my poor aching legs (er, I went in the bathroom for this). Pain nearly gone in less than five seconds. It was amazing.

I only spent $10, but I would have loved to have bought one of the kits. They're too expensive, unfortunately, but I think I'm going to save up for one.

Meeting new friends outside of school or work or church is very awkward for me. I sometimes feel like my brain operates on a completely different set of rules than the rest of the world sometimes, so I'm constantly second-guessing myself. Am I too exuberant? Too flippant? Too sarcastic? Too helpful? Too people-pleasing?

This is really fun at the park. I constantly feel like I'm being judged, even when I know I'm not, and this is not helped by the fact that no one is better at judgy than judgy moms. Side note: if you say "judge" enough, it starts to sound fake. So until very recently, I haven't said "hi" or made small talk or anything with other women who are there at the playground with their kids.

And then a few weeks ago, something in my brain broke, and I was like, "This is the dumbest thing ever. Just say hi, you insecure moron." And now I'm making new friends left and right. Not let's-braid-each-others'-hairs kinds of friends, but people who I can smile and wave at without assuming they're thinking, "Ugh, why does SHE keep talking to me?" And even if I do get that vibe from them, I don't care. It's amazing. Thank you, Lord.

I still have a whole heap of Crazy stashed in a back closet of my brain--Crazy I wasn't even aware I had until after Grace was born, but it was there, lurking, all along. But it seems like lately, they're being lifted off me, one by one. And maybe someday I'll be able to talk on the phone without breaking out the anti-nausea medicine. And do you know what that means? This means I will be calling all of you people who have kindly given me your number over the years. MWAHAHAH.

(Don't hold your breath; it will probably be 2020 before I get to that point.)

(Did anyone else read "2020" in a Barbara Walters voice?)

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Exciting things are coming our way

Jeremy will be gone again for another week and a half soon. Jooooy!

Okay, sarcasm aside, there are some ways that it's nice when he's not home:

-The weather is decent this time. We can escape the house without thirty minutes of putting on clothes, then taking half of them off to go potty or change a diaper, and then putting them back on again. On really nice days, we can just walk for ten seconds and be at a playground.

-I tend to go to bed earlier. Used to be, when he went away, I'd stay up until 5 in the morning. But the last few times, I'm asleep by midnight. Thank you, drugs. And thank you, aging brain and body.

-Freedom! Kind of. Ish. I mean, the kids are not exactly independent adults yet, but if we feel like going to the playground at 11:30,we don't have to worry about being home for Jeremy's lunch.

-When he's gone, I get a weird drive to tackle huge projects that I wouldn't normally even want to think about.

This time I think it will be decluttering. Since we had movers last time, I didn't do my traditional Household Purge, in which I throw out or donate everything that isn't nailed down or being worn by someone right that minute. So we have all this stuff lying around driving me crazy, but I haven't done anything about it because this is normally the sort of thing I hate dealing with (mostly because spiders like to pop out and scare the living daylights out of me every time I open a box).

We moved from a 1600-foot house with a terrifying basement to a 1200-sq-ft apartment with a tiny garage. We have never actually parked a vehicle in that garage even though we've lived here for a year. Ridiculous.

So I got all cocky and thought I was starting to get into shape, right?


I went and did this workout (not every single set all the way through, but I did 1/4 to 1/2 of each one, I think). My sister posted it a few months ago, but I was too chicken to try it. I did not want to know how terribly weak I really am--especially my legs.

I did *that yesterday.

Today I can barely walk. My arms are fine (thanks, swimming!), but my woefully neglected legs rain down punishment every time I move. I took the kids to the park and "ran" a few laps around the playground, started feeling good again, got home, sat down for .5 seconds, and my muscles were already so stiff I had to kind of roll forward off the couch. I'm thinking Saturday will be a good day to try to start moving again.

It's okay, though. It's not the injury sort of pain, just the YOU REALLY NEED TO WORK HARDER THAN THIS, YOU SISSY kind of pain. Next week when I try it again, it will maybe only be three days before I can walk normally again.

*For some reason it won't embed the whole thing, just the warmup. Irritating.

We enrolled The Child in swim lessons. This might be interesting. There are a lot of things she's afraid of, but she has been terrified of water from birth. She didn't stop screaming through baths until she was something like two (and I don't mean just the hair-washing). Now she remains calm even through hair-washing, and last week when we went swimming, she even enjoyed some splashing and wandering on her own. It's exciting progress; when she's 14, she may even be able to take a shower!

I really am hopeful, though. Dogs have been another big fear, and lately she's been walking up to strange dogs and asking to pet them. She's still scared, especially if they look at her. Maybe she thinks if a dog looks in her eye, it will eat her soul. But she hasn't actually screamed over a dog in at least two weeks.

So, we'll give swimming a go. She's got crazy long arms and giant flappy feet like me, so maybe she'll be a natural. I was afraid of water like she is until THIRD GRADE. Then my parents put me in swim lessons, and that was the end of that. So... wish her (or the instructor) luck!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Sunny days are here. Mostly.

I haven't been around much lately because life has been GOOD. And busy. In a GOOD way. What a wonderful change from two and three Marches (edit: Um, April, Naomi. APRIL)ago. Except:

Ways in which swimmers typically hurt themselves:

1. Rotator cuff problems
2. Other repetitive strain-related injuries

Ways in which I have hurt myself swimming:

1. Chipping my teeth on the side of the pool. Twice. As a seasoned swimmer.
2. Smashing my heel or heels into the wall on a turn. Twice. At least. As a seasoned swimmer.

Idiot. I sometimes wonder how I survived four years of soccer. Or, you know, thirty years of feeding myself with a fork.

The weather here has been (mostly) amazing the last couple of weeks. I have acquired a sunburn and a very faint tan. The sunburn just appeared one afternoon for no apparent reason, this circle right in the middle of my upper back and shoulder. I'm pretty sure it was aliens.

We go to the playground a lot. I've made a few friends. It's odd because last spring and summer, there was hardly anyone there, ever. Now it's just crawling with kids all the time, and so far most of them have been the un-obnoxious sort. I love it! I have yet to run into a mom or nanny who isn't nice and interesting.

Here's the part where I get annoying. Annoying-er, maybe. My friend is running a half-marathon this summer for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and she's SO CLOSE to raising the required amount.

Don't feel that you have to donate or anything; I'm putting it here because I figured it couldn't hurt, right? I know her personally, and I've only donated $5.

Anyway, I'm putting the link here; you can do whatever you want with it:

Fundraising Page

In the fitness department (feel free to skip this; I mostly keep track for myself), I am, overall, about down to where I was size-wise pre-Grace, though I weigh about ten pounds more. I have more in the stomach than I did then (hard to avoid after what pregnancy does to one's skin), but my legs and arms look way better than they have in years, even when I was spending entire waitressing shifts lugging around heavy stacks of plates. It's such a great feeling. The increased strength, I mean. Not the stacks of plates.

In the last month I have finally started to SEE a difference when I look in the mirror. Sure, I've noticed that I've gone down a couple of clothing sizes, but almost nothing had come off my stomach or arms until very recently, which I think is how the eye gauges size. Especially one's own hypercritical eye.

I can do 13 real pushups now. I could do more when I was younger, but I also weighed a lot less. I don't think I broke 105 lbs before my sophomore year of high school. I'm going to try to figure how to work my way up to pull-ups, too. That's another thing I was never able to do even when I was in great shape; if I can do it now, weighing so much more than I did as a freshman in high school, that'll mean I'm really getting somewhere.