That Bullshit, Non-Existent, Right Time

Come on Sloan, get your shit together. 

I’ve avoided wordpress for some time now. I haven’t completely avoided writing, or speaking, or life, I’ve just avoided this particular site due to wanting to do it right. You would think that I’d have learned by now, there is no RIGHT way to do things. Things aren’t just going to happen, We have to work for them. And right never really comes. If we can do something perfectly the first time, why bother?

I worked hard on a couple essays last month and actually read them. In front of people. Those hours I spent in front of the screen prove that work pays off, I didn’t wait to work, I just did it. We get applause and encouragement when we make that effort and not only that, we get results.

Right now I’ve started back in school. I did school once, graduated with a BA, learned some stuff, had a few jobs, learned what I DON’T want. This school is not traditional school, not at a college or university. I’m spending the next six months (minus 2 weeks) in the basement of a big office building, in the gym. These past two weeks I have learned what the Rectus Abdominus is, and what a joint action is and which direction they go with what movement.

I finally pulled the trigger to learn how to be a personal trainer. I have wanted to do this for close to eight years. When I look back at myself eight years ago I was in college, I was running 30 miles a week, I looked fit and healthy. Probably weighed a few dozen pounds less than I do now. Why didn’t I do it then? Fear, lack of confidence and knowing I wasn’t practicing what I would be preaching…

Why am I doing it now??! Not because I had an epiphany, not because the time is right. my life has never really lacked direction–it’s always pointed me in the ways of: Writing, Travel, Fitness, Education, a direction I just didn’t really know how to harness. A direction that I lacked confidence in.

I’m not skinny. I USED to be, I USED to be REALLY skinny. Well, kinda too skinny thinking back. So skinny that I was proud of myself on days that I was under my allotted 900 calorie goal. PROUD of starvation. Gross. I knew I was doing it wrong but I got results, as a former fat-girl every pound lost was a victory. This was not the mentality of a successful trainer and I knew that. So I held off.

As years and pounds added up I wanted to wait until it was the ‘right time’. When I could fit back into those smaller jeans, when I could run a faster mile, and like the reflection a bitmore–those goals haven’t happened and I finally decided that I was sick of waiting for that bullshit, non-existent, right time. The time is now.

I’m not skinny, but I’m healthy. I’m healthy and excited about making other people healthy and excited. Honestly, my body confidence is low right now, but in the past two weeks I’m learning, I’m studying, I took a test today and I think (I HOPE) I did well. I’m going through a program that is going to boost my knowledge and by having that knowledge I can only imagine that my confidence will grow.

What’s held you back? What propelled you forward when you knew you needed to make that move? Where are you now?

Freedom At 2am

Thinking about going outside, in the dark, alone, is intimidating. Flashing lights, blinking red reflectors, unseeable terrain ahead I take a deep breath and strap on my helmet.

I’ve rode bikes on wooded trail with a headlamp strapped to the top of my head, racing against the clock and pushing my teammates up the next switch back or following them down the final hill to the end of a race, or the end of that stage in the race. These moments were hard mentally and physically but I never once hesitated. I just did it.

Now, here in Chicago, I tend to linger at the bar after work a little bit longer. I have to psych myself up to re-attach my front wheel, unlock my U-lock that keeps the frame safe from crooks and I have to take a deep breath when I put the blinking lights on my handlebars and as I climb into the saddle I’m truly a bit afraid. It’s dark, kinda cold, the air is now damp and there’s a slight breeze that never seems to cease from Lake Michigan–I both love and hate that cool push of air.

But once I’m in the seat, once I begin peddling I forget that fear. There are fewer cars, the adrenaline doesn’t need to flow as hard as it does during the day; freedom is ahead and I’m rolling towards it self propelled and on two wheels. A ride home at 2am is a ride through a city that not everyone gets to see. It’s a quiet and calm city that during the day is rushed and stressed but at 2am she’s serene and relaxed. At 2am she bears her soul to those that will listen.

Freedom awaits at a 2am ride, however every time I have to saddle up and go I’m scared. It takes me a while to convince myself to go, but I always do and I never regret the silent moments we have.

Finding, searching, processing…being

I’m finding myself lazy. I’m finding myself unable to move. I’m finding myself paralyzed with choice, the need to make decisions and figure things out. I’m finding myself more lost than ever…I’m finding myself saying that a lot.

 

I’m also finding myself really connected to inspirational quotes and those pretty images they are posted with on facebook. I’m finding myself reading Sera Beak’s The Red Book [A deliciously unorthodox approach to igniting your divine spark] I’m finding myself not rolling my eyes as much. I’m using phrases like “I think the universe is telling me…” and being completely serious. I’m looking for clues.

 

I’m laughing at myself when I fall over in my yoga practice, or after a full body workout when I can’t get off the floor—I laugh at myself, and then I laugh at myself for laughing at myself. It’s joyful.

I also cry. I cry when I can’t decide. Then I remember to rejoice because I have decisions to make and the ability to change them. I’m finding myself giving advice but not taking any—this needs to change. I talk a lot. I want to listen more. When I listen I need to absorb. When I absorb I need to put it into action.

 

Here’s to change. Here’s to listening to what, I think, the universe might be telling me. Here’s to covering my basis and doing research. Here’s to new adventures that will move me forward. Here’s to being scared, nervous, and afraid—here’s to relishing in life and being alive!

 

[more to come—processing]

 

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