Monday, March 16, 2009

Balance and Acceptance

Where to start? My brain is running in circles at the moment, so I'm not sure where the beginning is. Basically a lot of what's in my brain has to do with guilt, body image, and trying to find balance in my life that works for everyone in my family.

Mr. Darcy wants to go out of town this weekend to see his parents, and so do I. They are sweet people who are kind and great to be around and our children love them very much. But, I also have my fundraiser for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society next Tuesday and need to get the word out to the general public because, well, I don't know anyone really and those that I do know, I've already talked to about the fundraiser and I'm going out of town for two days on a business trip. Finding the time to breathe, let alone get everything done is going to pose a bit of a problem. I am taking Friday off of work, but had dedicated that day to taking Angelfish to Disney or Sea World on a Mommy Daughter day like I did with Ladybug when she was home because of her skin infection. And if I don't do that this Friday, it won't be until May when I can do it. Plus she and I have already talked about it and she seems excited about it.

My original idea was to spend Saturday doing my workout (25 mile bike and then a 5 mile run) and then distribute fliers for the fundraiser. But, with our going out of town that doesn't work and we can't move our trip to next weekend because Bill is going out of town to go to his fraternity's initiation weekend in Gainesville. I feel like I need to do it so the fliers are around for the weekend at the shops to get as much interest as possible. I'm out of town for work Wednesday and Thursday so I can't do it then. Mr. Darcy's attitude is basically that I've done enough fundraising because I've raise more than the minimum required already and that my workouts are getting in the way of being able to go out of town and see his family, which I understand. But I also know that because of how he's acting about things that he is not going to want me to do Team in Training again any time soon (despite the fact that I would love to do it again in the Fall so I can do the Nation's Tri in DC and raise more money for cancer research, not to mention the great people I'm meeting and the great training too), so I feel like I have to do the best that I can with fundraising to make as much money possible for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. It is though my wants do not meet with the needs of my family because I can't do what I need to without interfering with the time with the girls and Mr. Darcy's free time. Finding balance is sometimes difficult.

So, I've come up with an idea. I will have the fliers all printed and ready and on Friday I will put them at specific locations at Waterford Lakes in the hopes that it will bring more people in. Whether this is going to be during the day will depend on how long Angelfish wants to spend wherever we go. If I have the time, I will do it Friday afternoon. If I do not, we will pack the girls up along with our stuff and hit Waterford Lakes before we leave town. Mr. Darcy will play with the girls at Chick-fil-a and feed them dinner. I will distribute fliers and then we'll leave. The next morning I will get up with the sun and do my 25 mile bike and 5 mile run, which hopefully Mr. Darcy will join me on.

And then there's the guilt that is associated with everything that is going on because I'm not here 100% of the time like I used to be. But at the same time, I need to be able to do things too although I feel like I'm breaking the "rules" associated with being a mother and a wife because I'm not supposed to put myself first like I have been and every time I'm not at home for the girls to go to bed or when they wake up on a Saturday because I'm at a practice or a meeting that I'm somehow being a bad mother simply because I am not there and because Mr. Darcy has to do it himself. But then I think to myself why is it that I have to be there all the time... and then the thought comes to me of what MR. Darcy said to me when we got into an argument about how he never shows an inkling of an interest in helping plan the meals for the week or doing the grocery shopping and he said to me that this is just how it is. Men don't do these things because they're not interested in them and they don't care about them, so I have to do it basically because I'm the wife and Mom and I want my kids to eat healthier foods. Like the mice in the movie Babe say, "the way things are." It sucks being the Mom sometimes. You love your children and would never trade them, but it seems like you have to trade yourself in the bargain. I almost feel like it's a cruel trick. I've found something I love to do - training and competing in triathlons and even better being able to do something to help those with cancer while doing it - and yet I feel like I'm becoming a bad wife and mother because of it and because of that like I'm supposed to give it up. But I don't want to give it up. It's good for me - mentally and physically - and I shouldn't have to give it up. I don't know that Bill is asking that of me either, but its just this feeling that I get whenever stuff like this comes up. I don't know that it comes from him either. It may come from my brain and what I think is expected of me, but it doesn't hurt any less.

And then there's my body image issue that I'm dealing with a lot lately too. I train pretty hard each week, and I'm eating healthy and am eating what I'm told is 500 calories under what I should eat each day, and I'm trying to eat in the balance I've been told is important for triathlon training, and I look at myself and I just see a big fat blob of a person. Triathlon clothing isn't exactly helpful either because well, it's skin tight because you have to be able to swim, bike and run in it. On top of it, the clothes I own don't really fit right. They're either too big or too small. When you have twins your body changes a lot, and when you have PCOS that makes it hard for you to lose weight (even while on medicine for it) that makes it even harder. And then you see women who have children, granted not necessarily twins, who look as though they did before ever having children, and you can't figure out how to get any thinner than you are despite all you're doing it makes you a bit self conscious. I want to look nice, but I don't feel like I deserve to spend the money on clothes because I can't get myself any thinner and I feel like it's taking money away from things I could buy for the girls or our family. And I'm sure people just think - well push away from the table more. But, for me, it's not about that. I actually hate to eat because I worry that every bite is going to make me fatter and when I do indulge in something I like (like ice cream) I feel guilty and fat for days afterwards. And before the triathlon training showed me how much I need to eat, I was actually eating less than 1200 calories on most days.

So I'm working on balance and accepting myself for who I am and trying to figure out how to be a good wife, a good mother and still find a way to let myself enjoy things in life that aren't related to anyone but my own interests. People always say that no one is happy if Mom isn't happy, but I don't know that is true. It seems like everyone in the family tends to be happy when Mom takes care of everyone and put themselves last. But that's not quite fair to Mom. Balance and acceptance. I wish it was easier. Today is just a tough day.

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