I think the older I get the more of a sap I am. Maybe it’s because there are many days that I am training, and have a twinge of guilt in me about time away from my family. I know that every Mom needs her time, and it is a good and healthy thing to do for yourself, but my time away some days seems excessive. My Fridays and Saturdays, are no less than 5-6 hour training days. That’s a lot. When other Mom’s are hangin’ out, playing with their kids on the weekend, I am on a bike for 5 hours. Or running for hours. Guilt. It’s something I have battled with ALL of these months of training for Ironman. Something I have battled with anytime I am away from my kids.
Some days however, I need to step back and really look inside, at where the guilt is coming from. Certainly not from my family. I guess as a Mom, it’s hard to have “me time.” Being 100% invested in your kids and family, is in our nature. And we are selfless. Time for ourselves gets put on the back burner,
But then, I have days like Mother’s Day. And here is where the sap in me comes out. We got up on Mother’s Day, and headed to meet some great friends for breakfast. It was early, and our kids were excited. Even our teenagers, coming off late Saturday nights!! Breakfast was awesome, and we came home to hang out together. The kids then proceeded to hand out my gifts and cards. The cards…the cards were magical. They were beautiful, but the things my kids wrote in them to me touched my heart the way nothing else could. My son Jeff said things like, “thank you for being so devoted to me. It’s that devotion that made me the man I am today.” My seventeen year old daughter Mariah wrote how much she is like me, and that she LOVES that. That we are just like twins, and she is my “mini-me” and is so proud of me. That she thanks God everyday for me. And little Alli; that I am always supportive, that I am always there for her, and that I care so much for her. That I am adventurous, beautiful, and love laughing.
They are proud of me, encouraging to me, are my biggest fans. Of course reading every card, and every word that they wrote, made me cry like a baby. They admire me. I guess when I am feeling that guilt creep in, I need to realize that even though, I may not be right there with them at that moment, they know I am always there. And through training I am showing them fortitude, dedication, and being a good, healthy, roll model to them. I am showing them, first hand about setting goals, dreaming big, and reaching for the stars. Setting your mind to something, and going for it. Anything is attainable, be it your first 5K, marathon, triathlon, Ironman or Ultra-marathon.
Next time I am training, I will hold their words close to my heart. I will know that even though I may be out swimming, riding or running, they are actually right out with me, in spirit. I am not leaving them behind; I am carrying them right along with me. They are cheering for me. Looking up to me, and have pride in me. No guilt can slip in when you have huge fans paving the way for you.