On Sunday night, I was driving home from my mom’s birthday party at her house. It wasn’t late but late enough to be dark. The littles had just inhaled an entire small pizza, several bread sticks and root beer. The food-lude had taken over and the back seat was quiet. The rear of my van is NEVER quiet, for the record. Somebody is always talking. I envy those who have a quiet ride. From nowhere, Ella asks a question…
“How long would it take to paint the sky?”
Oh, very long. It’s a big, big sky. Are you painting the actual sky or a picture of the sky?
“The actual sky, mama.”
Yeah, that would take a long time I suspect. What are you going to paint it with?
“Paint.” There is an unspoken ‘duh’.
What color? The sky can be lots of colors.
“Just blue. The color of sky blue. A pretty day.” She is quiet and dreamy.
The sky is pretty tall. How will you reach it all?
“With angel wings…”
Oh to be five years old. Excuse me, five and a half. Just because she thinks up something, it will be so. It must be so. She will make it so. I love these moments of leading questions just to see where they are going. I love my big girl. I love that confidence. I wish I had some of it.
The melancholy that was last night is all but gone. I’m also remarkably not sore. I woke up with a spring in my step and have been fairly motivated all day. Not that I have done much around the house but at least I don’t feel like I’ve been hit by a herd of cattle. I can only imagine that hurts.
I’ve thought about my attitude. I think that it comes from that change that I don’t see in myself yet. Yes, I feel better. Yes, I am sleeping better. Yes, I am writing more. I know, intellectually, that this is so much more than numbers on the scale.
I guess, much like Molly Ringwald in Sixteen Candles, that I expected to wake up a totally different person. (And, since you asked, I DO know all the words to that movie.) I look in the mirror and…it’s still me. Frumpy, un-highlighted (hi-lit?) hair, pale face, dark circles, random hairs in need of tweezing, pants that still don’t fit right…that’s me alright.
Tonight’s class was the sixth. I have completed two weeks with eight to go. And why is it that Molly always sticks me next to the new people? What if I want to cheer on my friends? Who are still strangers but at least I have facial recognition. That counts for something in the gym. Molly keeps looking at me when she introduces something new, like I’m going to translate for the masses. Which is what happened yesterday.
I did tell her to fuck off tonight when she had us take the treadmill to a 12% incline. So maybe I won’t be the teacher’s pet anymore. Thursdays are always treadmill days. Up and down with the inclines. Weights. Bands. Sixty minutes. The upside is that she isn’t a stickler for speed. At least right now. There were mumblings that we should all be at 2.8 or higher. I think I was sitting at a 2.6 so not too far off. And I am 2 weeks behind everyone else so that has to count for something.
Or it’s just an excuse.
A 12% incline is very hurty in the shin region. Must be the angle of my toes and feet. We did only 3 minutes there but it felt like an eternity. But I did it. With minimal swearing. And a ton of sweating.
How’s this for weird…(and maybe somebody has the answer): I have never been much of a sweaty person. I mean I usually get all red in the face and get a wee bit damp. I rarely (oh so very rarely) sweat enough to dampen a shirt. And I never need a towel when working out. But I take one anyway because I am prone to spilling my water on myself. So tonight (and to some extent last night now that I think about it), I actually dripped sweat. Not a ton. Not in a gross kind of way. But the hair touching my neck was wet. I dripped around my ears. My shirt was stuck to me. My socks were damp-ish. Any ideas? Why would I suddenly turn into a sweaty person?
Also, because I’m nosy, I want to know what everyone else has on their iPods. What makes them run? What keeps them from their own thoughts and keeps them motivated? Tonight, for me it was Wilco and the Twilight soundtrack.
But still no running. Some did but not me. I had the option (“You can put down the weights and jog or keep holding the weights and walk.”) but I didn’t take it. I am seriously afraid of losing my rhythm and falling off the stupid thing. Tripping over my own feet. Snapping a boob right off (2 bras may not be enough!). Passing out. All sorts of bad things happen when you run.
Maybe, like the sweat, that will change. Maybe I’ll get into that solitary place where it’s just you and the air in your lungs.
Maybe one of these days I can have the confidence that my big girl has always had. She is confident that angel wings will take her to the sky so she can paint it the perfect color.
And her mama still can’t look in the mirror.