Monday, May 07, 2012
The rules that once seemed to apply to living life in your 30s don't seem to make sense anymore. To say that times have changed since my parents were in their 30s is an understatement indeed, and thus, it's hard to turn to them for advice these days because I'm feeling quite "on my own" in terms of making up the new rules as I go and learning how to live in this world of Generation Xers and Generation Nexters and yada, yada, yada.
Following up on the painful daily existence of last week, I think I have finally made a bit of a breakthrough and have garnered a new acceptance for just where, exactly, I am in life.
I am in my early 30s. The years my parents' generation devoted to having and raising children, setting down roots and generally, settling into the "long haul" of a picture perfect, little life in the suburbs for the next 60 years - if they were lucky enough to have them. All goals that I want for myself too. But the life and times in which I now live have shifted all those goals into the next decade, not this one. The 30s are now about the "Leap List" - the list of all the things that you MUST accomplish before taking the marriage & children leap and settling down. Running a marathon is definitely a Leap List item.
I have fought a desire to grow up too fast my entire life. It's not that I'm wishing my life away, it's just that I want so much, I'm afraid if I don't get it right now, that I'm going to run out of time. Despite everyone telling me I'm still very young, I don't feel young. I am still holding my parent's generation up to the light of example and basing my life progress on how well I'm doing compared to their timeline.
Every generation has its own issues. My generation has witnessed the birth of the technological age and is now utterly dependent on that technology for daily existence; is the product of the women's movement and thus feels the responsibility to uphold those values and prove to the world that we can, in fact do it all and be everything that our mothers worked so hard to get for us; and has been thrust into the heart of absolute loneliness that all of the above means for a young woman in her 30s. Sure - you can want a great job, and great friends, and a great husband, and great kids, and a GREAT BIG savings account - but you can't want all of that at the same time because it seems virtually impossible to achieve. Life is now handled in segments, and you have to decide what order they go in. Career first, then matrimony, then family. The achievement of all of that is now the end product, not the thing to enjoy along the way. Any deviation from the above and you're seen as a martyr for the "old way of thinking" or as a system-deviant, set on doing things your own way and thus stuck out on a limb to sink or swim as you will. I know - those are a lot of feelings that I just threw on you there, but the heart isn't always willing to stick to the plan.
I thought I just might be able to accomplish a couple of list items at the same time. But it turns out that I can't. So I'm back to sticking to the plan until something else changes.
Like running the marathon - if I don't put in the work on the lower mileage days, I'm screwed when it comes to running the longer distances. I know this, and yet running those shorter distances is like pulling teeth some days. But all the wishing and hoping in the world is not going to change the facts. The hard work gets you to the finish line, time after time.
Breaking up is hard to do. There's a song that says so. But the other thing that has changed about my generation is that as you grow up and mature and really learn about relationships and how to have them properly, there is more room at the end of one to part amicably and maintain a friendship. I am lucky to have 2 very wonderful exes in my life. I have loved these men as my partners, but I continue to love them as important parts of my life, and constant reminders of how far I have come. Each relationship is different. But in each relationship I have grown immensely in who I am through being with another person. And hidden in there somewhere is my inspiration to keep pushing forward.
Every failure signifies growth of some sort. It's a way of spinning the negatives into positives. What it takes of a person to make it to a certain point - be it a decision, a destination, or any other turning point in life - is a series of steps. Those steps may not all be in the same direction. Some will be up, some will be down, some will be straight-forward. But you always end up somewhere. It may not be where you expected to go, but as long as you have learned lessons along the way, it's where you are supposed to be.
I kept saying that I felt like I needed more time for me. Now I have it. So I'm going to find my inspiration in that and do what I need to do to get to the next step. No one can tell the future - so for now, there's no point in rushing the present to get there too quickly. Because maybe there's something at this stage in the game that is meant to be discovered first.
Week 4 Schedule (Completed):
Sun - 3 miles
Mon - Rest
Tue - 12 miles
Wed - chiro & BMG
Thu - Rest
Fri - 5 miles
Sat - Walk
Total Weekly Miles: 20
Total Weekly Calories Burned: 2811
Weekly Weigh-In: 187.2 (not what I wanted to see, but down from last week)
Week 5 Schedule:
Sun - Rest
Mon - 8 miles
Tue - 5 miles
Wed - Swim
Thu - 8 miles
Fri - Rest
Sat - Zumba (if I feel like it, or a walk)
(Sun - 13.1 miles!!! HALF, here I come!)