Thursday, April 24, 2014

Conversations With Sebastian: Remember those?

Sebastian: Can people marry old people when they grow up?

Me: Well, if they want to they can.

Sebastian: Good.  Then I'm going to marry you when I grow up.

Me: Umm ...

(While I am incredibly touched that he loves me so much, I am a bit put off by the fact that he called me 'old.'  I am not old.  I am full of wisdom.)

(Also - aaaawwwwwww!  My baby!)

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Motherhood & More: Kids aren’t alone in gaining skills through soccer*

It turns out I’m a soccer mom.

I mean I don’t have the minivan. Most of the time we’re late to practice and I forget water for my kids. But three or four days a week I’m on the sidelines cheering on little players.

My oldest has been playing since he was 4. He had a rough start because he got hit on the head with a ball and refused to go back on the field. At two separate practices.

But once he got the hang of it, he had a great time. He improved dramatically over the past year or so, expanding his footwork skills and scoring goals. He’s working on teamwork and passing now. It’s nice because on his team he’s an older, more experienced kid so now he gets to help the ones who haven’t played as much.

My daughter started this past fall and she’s a natural, provided she stays on the field.

Most of her first season we spent chasing her down because once she had the ball she would keep kicking and running until she met the fence surrounding the field. She mastered dribbling that way, so I guess I can’t be too upset. Plus I got some extra exercise.

With the younger kids, however, there isn’t much you can do if they choose not to play or decide in the middle of the game to run and give you a hug. And I like that because everyone is out there for fun so there isn’t too much pressure.

We try to instill in the kids that cheering for everyone and having a good time is more important than winning, and definitely more important than putting another team down. Yes, we want our team to win, but we also will clap when we see the opposing team perform well.

I played soccer very poorly in high school. I never mastered coordination, which is necessary for trying not to catch the soccer ball with your hands as it’s coming right at your face. My kids have some of my coordination issues, but they’re also young and are quick to pick up new skills. It’s amazing to watch them grow as players.

My daughter seems to be better this season in that she spends most of her time on the field when she’s supposed to be there. But there still are days when she has trouble focusing and thinks laying down in the goal is the best way to showcase her talents.

I knew I would enjoy watching the kids play, but I didn’t know how much I would love it and how much I would have to restrain myself from yelling exuberantly during the games. As it is, I am not so good at restraining myself. But I haven’t embarrassed the little players yet, so I haven’t stepped over the line too far.

My son has expressed interest in playing other sports that might interfere with the soccer schedule. While my first instinct is to keep him at this sport I love so much, I won’t force him. If he wants to do something else, great. I’ll just become a baseball mom or a judo mom. Or even a swimming mom. Or he might decide he doesn’t want to play any sport at all and that’s fine, too.

My daughter has an overabundance of – let’s say liveliness – so she loves anything that involves running around. We’ll see where she wants to go as she grows older. I’ve heard gymnastics is a good way to burn off energy.

For now, though, it’s rushing home to rush through some semblance of dinner to rush into cleats and shin guards and soccer clothes to rush to the field and yell and cheer.

I’ll take it.

*This column originally published in The News-Enterprise on April 23, 2014.  

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The full monty*

My husband is running a marathon on Saturday.

It's not the wussy half-marathon.**  Nope, it's the full monty: 26.2 miles.  (Because the other 26 miles are nothing without the 0.2.)

This entire thing is not something I understand.

Okay, maybe not the entire thing.  I get the need to push yourself, to work harder than you've ever worked before to reach a goal.  It's just the length of this goal that boggles.  I mean, 26.2 miles!  I think I can run 2.  Maybe 3 on a good day. And I always push myself, I do - usually until it hurts.  (See yesterday's post.)

So I'm proud of him.  He's been training for quite some time, forever it seems like.  And he's dedicated, which is pretty amazing when you think about how awful it must feel to run that long.  He's gotten up to 20 miles because everything he's read said that if you can run 20 miles you can do the entire thing.  That's probably because after reaching mile 20 you're brain shuts down and stops sending signals to your body that this is painful so please to be stopping now because it knows you're not really paying attention anyway.

At least that's my theory.

We have to get to the marathon place super early on Saturday so he can get all of his swag and stuff, so the kids are staying with my mother on Friday.  I don't think they'd do well with the extended amount of time we'd need to be in the crowd, anyway.  I'd rather not deal with a tantrum-y 3 year old and her bored out of his mind brother.  Because apparently it takes time to run a marathon, like four whole hours.  (Even more of a reason why it is completely unfathomable to me. RUNNING FOR FOUR HOURS IS INSANE!)

However, I'm incredibly proud of the hubs for doing what he's doing because I see how much effort he's put forth.

And I'll be cheering from the sidelines because LOOK AT WHAT MY HUSBAND CAN DO!

*Made you look!

**In no way do I consider a half-marathon wussy.  Don't throw things at me I WAS JOKING.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Migraines can suck it

So I got a migraine on Monday.

I've only had one before in my whole entire life and I had hoped to never have one again.

I worked out Monday morning for the first time in a few weeks.  My excuse is that I'm having a hard time getting my work/life schedule figured out but really I just like being home by myself for a whole entire day and it's hard to use part of that day off to go to the gym.

During my workout I ran for 20 whole entire minutes, which was actually a pretty big accomplishment as I hadn't ran for quite a while, so I was expecting to run for 10 minutes then pass out.  But no, I did 20 and then passed out.

Okay, fine.  I didn't pass out.  I walked super fast on the treadmill for 25 more minutes at an annoying incline and also my butt is sore now.

I actually was feeling okay afterward.  I'd pushed myself on all the weight stuff after the run/walk so moving was, you know, interesting.  But I still managed to clean the house up some and drive to pick up my husband at work for his lunch break.  And it was on that short, five minute drive that I started to feel pretty bad.  I'd had a dull headache, but that was normal as working out always gives me a dull headache.

On the drive to Chris' work my eyes wouldn't work properly so I had to make him drive once I picked him up.  And then I walked in and dropped all of my stuff and lay on the couch with a pillow over my head because all the pounding going on in my head was directly related to things like light and sound and life.

Chris made me some lunch but I was in too much pain to sit up and eat it so I stayed there with the pillow over my head, cursing the gym and everything it stands for.

It lasted a couple of hours, some of which I slept through, thank god.  But finally the pain went away enough for me to function, at least on a sort-of level, though I was still pretty fuzzy all evening.

Really, though.  I ALWAYS get a headache after working out.  I enjoy the gym. I like how my muscles feel afterward and I like feeling like if need be I could run away from an attacker without hyperventilating to death.

But the headaches, man.  They are enough to make me forego gymtime forever.  Does anyone else have any experience with this?  If you do, do you know what I can do to make them stop?   Working out is supposed to feel good, right?  My husband always feels awesome after a workout but he regularly runs double digit miles so I don't trust his judgement.