Relationships have been on my mind a lot lately. I’m reaching the time in life where a good deal of friends are getting divorced, middle age crisis’ are approaching and many people are seeking some new kind of inspiration. Some find this by taking up new hobbies, or running away from responsibilities, others by traveling and still others by buying things they don’t need or can’t afford.
The divorce thing is really tough to watch – in my most selfish moments it makes me wonder if sharing your most intimate thoughts and moments in life with another person is something that will come to haunt you. It is always in the back of my mind – is my “family” now always going to be so? Are these relationships worth emotional toil or are they dispensable? As relationships crumble – and mind you, divorce is not just about the man and wife – ever – I get so scared.
Then – I visit my folks’. But they are not the ones that give me faith (well…I shouldn’t say that – they give me some faith, having been married since they were 17- and 19-years-old – they are now in their 60s). I get to see my 84-year-old, sprite Grandfather, seen below (photo courtesy of one brilliant brother, Brian Dilg.) He has seen so much in life. His mother passed away when he was six, his step mother died when she was 13. He had another stepmother – the Nana that I knew – who embraced and loved him and he, her…. But…
… the biggest, most wondrous thing about Papa is his love for his wife. He met her when he was 13. She passed away last November from Alzheimer’s. For the last 20 or so years of her life he stood by her side – in a nursing home for the most part – every single day. He stayed by her when she started to lose her memory. He stayed when she began getting lost, running away and throwing things at him. He stayed when she completely forgot him and couldn’t function anymore (although, she always kissed him back – the one human reaction she never lost) and he stayed when many, many people would not have. My Grandparents’ story around the theft that is Alzheimer’s is a post for another time. For today, I thank Papa for showing me that real love can last, that not all relationships are dispensable and that in the end – faith is a daily leap that is a reward in and of itself.
…and I’m so thankful for his insanity! As you will read if you choose to click over, he bought me quite a Christmas present this year. It’s such a thoughtful, significant and personal gift that he even created a blog for it (we are both truly techno geeks … over the holiday break we realized that back in ’99 – when we were getting married – we created a blog before we even knew what a blog was – it was such a great site I wish it was still up – we even won an “award” for it… but I digress).
I suggest starting here for the beginning of the “story” that will shape our 2008. I’m so excited, nervous – still in shock – and quite frankly, happy to have something besides work to focus on all the time (okay, yes, I have two children, three dogs, great friends and more than enough to do… but again, I digress).
Sometimes you need inspiration from an outside source and wow, if this isn’t inspiration I don’t know what is. If you have any interests in running, marathons, Ireland, adventure or heck, even marriage – and how to keep it interesting – perhaps you will find interest in our blog or following our next 10-11 months of training on Twitter – you can find us at @training4dublin.
Happy New Year – it’s certainly going to be an interesting one!
I cherish Saturdays. Workweeks are long and stressful and not full of enough sleep. Sundays bring anxiety about Monday morning. But Saturdays are glorious.
Case in point, last Saturday I left the Holiday cards unsigned, the presents unwrapped and the house uncleaned to go outside and play with my boys. We have a hilly yard – which most of the time stinks but for sledding it is excellent (especially when you are 2 and 5).
We spent a good half of the day outside playing in the snow (before Sunday’s rainstorm turned it all to ice) and for a moment I stopped at the top of the hill, my two-year-old on my lap, looked out at the ocean and thought “wow, life is awesome.”
Moments like this can be few and far between but are just the fuel I need to keep going. I hope you have one soon, too. Remember what matters during this very busy and stressful month!
I’m counting my blessings this month even as I run around stressing about getting everything done: the shopping, the wrapping, the end-of-year sales and finances, the travel plans, etc. But I’m not forgetting how, even though I’m crazed, I’m extremely lucky. I have a warm home – in both temperature and spirit, a great marriage, two glorious children, great and patient friends, a thriving business on my own terms, fabulous employees, a supportive extended family, three dogs who make me crazy but are great for cuddling, and much, much more.
As I look around this month and count my blessings more than usual, I also want to give back as a way of saying “thanks” to the universe/Kismet, etc. It’s easier than ever these days – so no excuses. Click on any of the URLs below to share the spirit this holiday season – and always, for that matter.
Support research for many medical causes. My personal passions: Alzheimer’s and Cancer.
I’m a fairly Type-A person – always on the go, pretty intense and not one to sit down for long, if at all. It’s also quite possible that I possess a few obsessive- compulsive behaviors – if you count noticing any time a picture frame is moved as obsessive….
Many elements in my life have likely contributed to my constantly-racing heart and go-go-go mentality – a German-work ethic, a childhood full of yellow legal pad “to do lists” from my father, a Catholic upbringing…the list goes on. In some senses, my intensity has served me well – at work, for example, where clients appreciate my tireless work ethic and constantly spinning mind. In my personal life it has been called into question from time-to-time, such as when my husband is hoping I can just focus on him during a conversation – and not tidy the counter, open the mail or keep my fingers on the keyboard while he talks.
Like anyone, I was nervous to have children. I like everything in its place and I wondered how in the world I would possibly balance my career and motherhood. But I’ve found over the years that not only am I doing an acceptable job at juggling, but my sons (ages 5 and 2) are helping me to relax a bit – ironically, when I’m busier than ever – as they continue to teach me every day some very important lessons:
• Messes can be cleaned
• Relaxing is not a bad thing – especially on the hammock with a sippy cup
• Trains are cool – bugs are too
• Love with all your might
• I should have appreciated my parents more
• Some loud music, crazy dancing and beating a drum set does wonders for stress relief
Boston Red Sox just won the World Series in a sweep over the Colorado Rockies. Some day we hope to be able to celebrate in Boston with them.
This team was just so awesome to watch in this Series. From the rookies Pedroia and Ellsbury to MVP (yeah!) “old guy” Lowell to the “Riverdancer” Papelbon – they rocked. Truth be told, I think Boston may be in shock, as we are pretty used to more drama – but we’ll take it!