Marriage

There’s this place in a marriage where you accept what you did. I can’t call it settling because that’s unkind. My husband loves me deeply. He does a fuck Ton he really doesn’t want to do because he loves me. He doesn’t look at other girls. But for fucks sake does he hold my hand? Does he care for me like i need? Hell no. I am not “happy” he doesn’t hug me, snuggle me, dote on me. But he loves me. Just in that god damn way i have no control of. I can rationally see it but it still leaves an ache in me so deep it breaks me

Confidence

There’s a woman at the gym that i cross paths with often. And by often i mean pretty much daily. Our daughters are similar in age. We both nursed until they were 2. She is so dedicated, constantly training. We talk in passing about her workouts, and in a non professional sense- i just listen usually because she has methods she likes to stick to. But she came to me a few months ago burnt the fuck out. Life & training had her down, and she wasn’t getting the results she wanted. I listened. And i said, you are someone else inspiration, take a break or make a change if you need it, but don’t you spend your time comparing yourself to someone else’s results. We parted ways and went back to our normal exchanges. Yesterday, as we swam with our girls out of coincidence, she made a point to thank me for my words. Because it helped remind her to keep going.

Confidence is something we build from the inside. It’s not in a high heel or a new lipstick or perfect arms. It’s in you. Your light shining through. No one else’s. We are all so different and it needs to be embraced, not fought.

Caring differently

After i had Rowan, i learned to care differently. Not less or more. Just a change in direction. I no longer cared as much what i looked like, but rather how i felt. I no longer cared as much who i was with, but how they treated me. I lost my ability to give fucks about things like sleep, no matter how much i miss it, because time is different now. I hope to high heaven that i live to be a hundred and get to watch every part of her life unfold, but if i don’t, i care about her so deeply, that she will always know how much she is loved. I don’t care about going places, as much as i care about the experience we have while we are there. I don’t care so much about perfect pictures as i do about capturing moments i want to keep forever. I just care differently now.

Upside down life

Our world turned upside down last June. It’s been almost a year and i am overwhelmed with emotions. Grief is so consuming. My heart is broken for the loss in our family. I am sad and so very angry. My husband will never be the same. I’m overcome by selfish pain because my focus has been to care for my husband and sweet girl. As we come up on the anniversary, i am so filled with fear. Of losing my own husband. I spoke this weekend with a dear friend about how fucked up it is that i would never fear to lose him to another woman, but instead to the hands of death. I need him here. I still don’t understand how any of it has happened. I want to write a book called The Outsiders Grief. My loss is nothing compared to my sister in law, my mother in law, my husband, his sister. But it is here. It is a weight that flipped the world upside down. My daughter won’t know one of the most wonderful men I’ve ever met. I want to lay on the floor for a week. I want to turn back time more than anything. But i can’t. And it so consuming. Maybe if i wrote the book this summer, it would allow me some peace. A cathartic release about this journey. Life will never be the same. But i have to do something. I cannot sit and let it fester. Our lives have got to continue forward. Our marriage has become stronger. We have learned to speak, to understand, to ask for what we need. To give each other space but still hold on so tightly. It’s so consuming right now. I keep feeling like i am on a train track running next to the rest of the family- trying to keep mine running smoothly (and struggling to) while i race along next to them. I can see them all struggling as well, but i never have the right words. Are there “right” words after death? Is there any salve to calm such an extensive hurt. We have the ability to be so thankful that we were given the chance to know someone so wonderful. To carry them with us. To honor them. My donut obsession is an homage to my grandfather who made my life so wonderful. He died over 15 years ago and i still cry for the loss. That was a different kind of traumatic death. Not like this. This is different. Being a wife, a sister, a daughter in law is a journey in itself. But to struggle through loss and never feel like you know how to act or know what to say is….. something that drives my anxiety to a point where my body feels electrified. I will continue to do my best. To breathe. To find ways to be there, and care in my own way. Even if it feels like I’m on the outside of the window…. somehow it’s raining on both sides, and it feels like my umbrella just won’t open right now. The best i can do is the best i can do. I’m sending love to those falling through grief, struggling to breathe. Get up again, find joy after the tears. Let the water wash away the pain and then honor the life. Keep going.

May challenge

It’s May first! I’m using it as a chance for a fresh start. Tomorrow, I will not only make food for my daughter. I will do more than drink coffee. Even if I’m not feeling well (I don’t usually do well in the morning with food) I will make myself a smoothie. I will get myself to eat and eat healthy foods. They are right here in the house. There is no reason I care for everyone else and then just leave myself to the wind. I deserve to be cared for too. So that’s what this is about. This challenge is to better care for yourself. If your long term goal is to lose weight, maybe that means you choose to eat out less during this challenge. Or drink less alcohol. One big thing? Get some better sleep. No laying in bed with the TV on or your phone being checked. Let your body have some down time this month. Be kind to yourself! Don’t worry, I want you to choose to workout too- so if that’s where your motivation is lacking, make that part of your month. Let your choices be driven by your hopes and goals. Take a picture of yourself today. Send it to me. When the challenge is over, we are going to compare the people, the one you were, and the one you became through better habits, and more happiness.

Kettle bell workout

Little total body for the calorie burn but the focus is on the booty and thighs.

Curtsy with curl and press x10

Plié (2 pulses) with single arm row x10

Curtsy with curl and press x10 on the other side

Plié (2 pulses) with single arm row x10 on the other side

Kettle bell swing x60 seconds

Heel Lifts x30 seconds

Pulses x30 seconds

(Give yourself an active rest with some nice inchworms or V ups)

Do it again, 3x.

Go!

Begin again. Always begin again.

As I lay here on a Sunday night, a basket of laundry in my peripheral vision calling me (very quietly) to put it away (I never really do) with SVU back on the tube, I reflect on the last two years of my life. They have been no doubt the best, and also that worst of my life. Tonight, at dinner, my sweet Rowan turned to me and said, “Daddy saved you, didn’t he, Mommy?” I blinked. And then said yes baby, I think he did. We have been keeping each other going. Quietly. Slowly. We have spent the last two years trying to get settled. Ive had a million reasons not to write or reach out. I’ll share them all, eventually.

Recently, I realized I need to start looking outward. I’ve taken the better part of the past year to just focus inward. On my child, my husband, myself. I changed my position at work so that I could keep my tunnel vision. It was what I needed to do right then. For my body too. A few weeks ago, my mind came back. It started to work again. Ideas. Passion. Like something broke back open.

Here I am. Beginning again.

My name is Irish. I’m a 33 year old Harry Potter addict who works out on the side. No but seriously. I have been a personal trainer, yoga, Pilates & barre instructor for over ten years. Teaching is my happy place. It’s how I share light (and pain) with those I love. My clients become my friends, my family. I want to share that with you too.

I will be posting workouts. Sometimes 5 minutes of stretching, like today. To be kind to yourself. Because no matter what your fitness goals, that is so very important. I cannot tell you how much kindness & happiness can change the body. Kindness to yourself, and happiness in your body will alter your appearance. You will read my rants about this.

Sometimes I will post challenges. Ways to push yourself, to find creativity in your workouts to keep your mind alive, and your body progressing.

Sometimes, like today… I’ll be thinking about the need to begin again. To have the courage to keep beginning again. No matter what. It’s ok to take time when you need it. Pause. For minutes, days, months…but you have to begin again. You have to wake up and try again.

My name is Irish. I have anxiety, chronic migraines and nerve damage in my left shoulder. I am hyper-mobile in many of my joints and have been working for years to find the correct way to workout to care for myself. I’ve taken this search for knowledge, this search, and translated it to helping others. The greatest majority of my clients who see me in person, come to me for help with pain. Pain management tends to be like a puzzle. Each piece has to be found and put together the right way to find relief. I pride myself in being part of the puzzle for so many.

My pain also helps me see the world a little differently. Perspective is so very important. My anxiety skews it from time to time…but the workouts help.

My name is Irish, I love donuts, perusing the ‘we made too much’ section of Lululemon, drinking too much iced coffee and leaving cupboard doors wide open so that it looks like a crazy person has been in my kitchen always.

I started teaching because I liked the workouts and benefits of yoga and Pilates, but I could not find anyone who had a message that resonated with me. The explanation of how my body was supposed to find what it needed was….. lacking. There was not enough. I wanted more. Different. So that’s what I became. I became the instructor I was looking for. I teach classes that are meaningful to me.

This life is meaningful to me. I’m not a super nice person. I’m not a cheer leader. My teaching style has been rebellious, and sometimes compared to a dominatrix. I don’t have all the answers. I’m on a quest to find them and share each one.

Childhood Joy

Lately I’ve been put in a lot of scenarios where I am blown away at the difference between a child’s joy and a parent’s indifference. One example, being at the pool yesterday. Listening to the kids play as the parents sit on the side. Who says you have to stop playing at a certain age? I overheard one mom say  she couldn’t get in the pool because she was pregnant, another thought the water was too cold, no matter how many time their kids asked them to play…. I know we have duties as adults, our health and safety along with the safety of the children we are with but my goodness. I of course cannon balled in a few times and swam my laps. I ended up chatting with a very precocious 5 yr old who really enjoyed the company of someone who would listen as he babbled and paddled. It just struck me- we end up getting so caught up in being adults that we don’t play like we used to.

My second example was being at a Lacrosse Tournament this weekend. It made me yearn for the days of playing soccer all weekend long. The smell of the field after it rained. The gatorade and sliced oranges. I can close my eyes and be transported right back to the days of stinky shin guards and horrible tan lines. Why am I missing it? Because I haven’t taken the time to find a soccer league for adults here in Madison yet. I need to. I miss it, and I shouldn’t have to- all that joy soccer used to bring to my life, the thrill of the goal, the training, the love of the game- they’re all still there.  So my goal is to find a league I can get into. What joy have you lost since being a kid? What did you love that you’ve given up because you aren’t a kid anymore? Can’t play your sport? Volunteer for a team. Make time. Coach. Be part of it. Get your joy back.

 

Happiness is part of wellness. Go out and find it!!!