As an adult, I can't really ask my dad to rock me until all of the worries go away, so I'm left to my own devices. The anxiety of the world takes me over sometimes. My head swirls with every possible crisis scenario. I can't sleep. Albeit unconsciously, I convince myself that the only way to get rid of the head swirl is to fill my body with unhealthy food.
More unhealthy food.
More unhealthy food.
Stuff it down.
Weigh down all of those scary thoughts so that they suffocate and die.
So that I can sleep.
So that I can feel like myself again.
...I take on too much!
There, I said it!
I sign up and register and obligate and respond and enroll and say "YES!" to more things than I can humanly complete to my best ability. I can half-ass many things at a time, but I can only do a few things at a time really well. This is a lesson that I will hopefully learn soon.
And so the realization hits me hard: I fill my life with goals to distract myself from being present. Because if I'm working toward a "goal," I can be swept up in that task. And not deal.
This is me. Career goals. Fitness goals. Weight goals. Life goals. Goals. Goals. Goals. I have so many goals that sometimes I can't even organize all of the goals in my brain. My life has always been about goals. I was searching for colleges at the age of 16...with the goal of escaping small-town-America. After college, my goal was to find a job to pay off the credit card debt that I racked up while I was in college.
Find a husband. Earn my bachelor's degree and become a career woman. Start a family. Treatment for my eating disorder...leaving my husband...being happy...running a 15K...learning how to love...running a half marathon...running a marathon...being a better sister, daughter, and aunt...doing a triathlon...planning a wedding...starting a family...earning my master's degree...starting my own business...moving closer to my family (ironic, since my original goal was to move away from my family)...and on, and on, and on...
I honestly believe that life is all about setting goals. We have to set clear and specific goals in order to continuously strive to become a better version of ourselves. The problem is that when I take on too many goals at one time, I shut down.
I yell at My Gazelle for "not listening", when he clearly does listen.
I have panic attacks when I'm supposed to be sleeping.
I cry at midnight.
I quietly declare,
"It's just too much. Too much."
He does, but it's not hard enough. Sometimes the only way for me to feel real again is to be squeezed harder than even feels comfortable. It's not like being rocked by my dad, but it's just as calming. I need to be squeezed hard enough for all of the head swirling to go away. A strong hug brings me back into myself. Back to reality. Back from that 'outside looking in' feeling. Away from the anxiety and fear.
So that I can sleep.
I'm scared about my triathlon. I'm overwhelmed with the preparation. I don't know if I can swim that far in only an hour. I'm afraid that my wetsuit won't fit. Last night, I was obsessing about what I would wear under the wetsuit (I've since solved this mental dilemma). What if my bike breaks? What if I fall off my bike? I'm afraid that I will have to walk the entire run. I'm afraid that I won't be able to finish in the 4.5 hours that are allowed.
I have 2 projects and 2 tests due for one of my classes, and I haven't even BEGUN the other class. There are only 3 weeks left in my semester.
I have a 15K on July 10th, and my longest run in the past 3 months has been 5 miles (2 months ago). I will have 2 weeks to prepare for this race after my tri is over on Sunday.
Strangely, I'm not worried at all about the IronGirl in August. My sister will be there to help. My sister calms me.
I don't know how the triathlon is going to go on Sunday. I'm hoping for the best, but preparing for the worst. If nothing else, this triathlon will be my crash course in doing a triathlon (or what NOT to do in a triathlon). Maybe it will go well, maybe it won't. However, I will definitely learn a lot through the process.
I'm honestly looking forward to a point in my life where I'm not firing on all cylinders at once. I want to slow things down, enjoy my life, and just focus on the things that are really important: family, fun, love. When my mind is overwhelmed with too many goals, everything suffers. I eat too much, I cry too much, I am too grumpy, and I am not on top of things at my big girl job. I am just not myself.
That's not fair to myself or to the people who love me.
After my races are over, there will be changes. Changes for the better.
And I'm buying a rocking chair.