Moms in Transition

It's my turn! Now what?

It’s Just Not Fair

ImageWhile I admit to disliking many things about being “middle age” (Okay, let’s just start there; that term is one of the first things I hate about the whole age thing, but I regress…), probably the biggest hang up I have is the whole weight issue.

In the past, read 5 years ago, I would gain a few pounds, then catch myself, and diet a bit and exercise and loose the weight within a few weeks. My body and I had an understanding. I took care of it (somewhat) and it was good to me (or as good as it can be when I fed it too much chocolate and not enough fruit!)

But, since turning 45, my body has turned on me. It has abandoned me in my greatest time of need. It has changed the rules, and I am here to say, loudly, I DON’T LIKE IT ONE BIT!

Oh, I heard the grumblings from family and friends. I was forewarned of this betrayal, but I simply refused to believe it could happen to ME!

These days, I glance in my mirror and wonder, who is this middle-aged woman gazing back? Surely it’s not me!

The round, wrinkled face, dry, frizzy hair, and muffin-topped hips couldn’t possibly be mine, could they?

Perhaps my biggest complaint is the fact that I truly believe I am eating better and healthier, and I am exercising 4-5 times a week, and I am still not loosing the weight. This worked in the past. Why not now body? Why have you turned on me? It’s just not fair.

Well, as my mom always said, life isn’t fair.

I’ve lived in denial for over a year, and I am finally coming to realize that, whine as I might, my body will not change unless I do.

I’ve learned that chocolate cupcakes, cheese, and beer can no longer be staples in my diet.

I’ve accepted the fact that the gym is my new morning hot spot, and the walking trail is my new social meeting place.

I’ve replaced People magazine with Prevention magazine, and started reading food labels as closely as I once read romance novels.

I’ve filled my drawers with exercise clothes and sports bras, and am more apt to ask a woman “where’d you get those sneakers” instead of “where’d you get those boots.”

Yes, I’ve acquiesced to the realization that I am reaching a certain age and that I need to take better care of my body with the hopes that it will take better care of me in the future.

However, I have not, nor ever will, call myself middle-aged. I prefer to think of myself as in my prime! Take that body!

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Remember those lazy Saturday afternoons? Me neither.

It’s Saturday! It’s the weekend! Depending on the age of your children, this thought can elicit either groans or cheers.

Up until last year, Saturdays in our house meant Game Day! (And I don’t mean “Are you ready for some football?/ Sitting on the couch” Game Day!)

For 20 years, Saturdays meant hustling from one gym to another field, dropping off, coaching, cheering, consoling and picking up kids from soccer, basketball, swimming, baseball, softball, and /or volleyball games or practices, depending on the season.

Saturdays meant waking up early, checking calendars, coordinating schedules, confirming times, readying uniforms, making lunches, filling water bottles and driving all over the tri-state area to ensure our future all-stars were in the right place, wearing the right uniform, carrying the right equipment, ready to play their hearts out.

Saturdays meant sitting on the sidelines, or on the bleachers, cheering our proteges on, listening to 20 or so other parent do the same, with such encouraging cheers as “Hit ’em harder Junior.” and “What do you mean a foul? You’re crazy Ref!”

Saturdays were HELL!

And the really scary part was, it took me 10 years to realize that. I was so caught up in the whole sports mentality of so many parents today, that I looked forward to the weekends.

I couldn’t wait to get out there and cheer on my little athlete. I looked forward to those mornings on the soccer field and afternoons in the gym, “catching up” with my friends. It was fun. Until one day, when it wasn’t.

I remember the exact moment when I saw through all this “fun.”

I was sitting in a crowded, hot gym in January, squeezed between two women whose boys I had had over to my home the previous week for a play date with my son. Unfortunately, both of those boys were on the other team.

As we sat there chatting, one woman stopped, mid-sentence, and yelled, loudly and aggressively, “GET THAT BALL Junior. Foul him! Go on! Get him!”

And when I looked up, I realized the “Him” was my son.

Really? I’m all for competition, but when you start screaming at neighbor’s children, friend’s children, telling your kids to hit them or get them, I draw the line.

Have you been on the sidelines of your child’s game recently? It’s not for the faint of heart.

And that’s when I realized Saturdays were just no fun anymore. I finally got it.

And I spent the next 10 years dreading them. I stood off to the side, by myself, excusing myself for various reasons. “I have a call coming in.” “I just need to stretch  my legs.” “Getting some fresh air.” “Don’t feel well.”

Then, last year, we noticed something. Suddenly, after 20 years, our Saturdays started freeing up. Suddenly, we had a Saturday off now and then. Kids got older, sports decreased and our presence wasn’t always needed, or wanted, at every game and/or practice.

Suddenly, we had free time. Remember free time? I didn’t. And so, my husband and I wasted that free time, asking ourselves what we should do. And by the time we thought of something, our free time was over. (We still have two children, so there wasn’t all that much free time.)

But, it’s coming. I sense it, just liked I sensed a full nights sleep when they were babies. I see free time, with its afternoon dates with my husband, filled with lunches and long drives in the country, in my future. It’s coming.

And this time, I’ll be ready for it!

Welcome!

I know what you’re thinking.

Here we go, another Mom with a Blog. And I guess you’re right. I am a mom and this is a blog, but it’s a little different than other blogs I’ve seen. (And believe me, I’ve looked!)

Perhaps you’re here because you know me, and you’re being nice (or curious). That’s great. I thank you and welcome you. I need all the friends I can get.

Perhaps you’re here because you googled something else and this accidentally came up. That’s great. As they say, there are no accidents. I hope you take some time and read this post, and come back again.

Perhaps you’re here because you saw the name, Moms in Transition, and it caught your eye. It made you pause. That’s great. I know there are a lot of us out there.

Us? Yes, us. Moms in Transition. Our kids are older or grown or out of the house completely, and we suddenly have the time we always wished for when we were changing diapers or driving carpool or typing papers. But now that we have the time, we don’t know what it is we should be doing.

Careful what you wish for!

BC (before children) I was an editor for a trade magazine. I always knew I wanted to write. Then, like many women, I got caught up in children, Gymboree and play dates, and my dream drifted away. I happily (well, most of the time) became a full-time, PTO-certified, van-driving mom.

Then suddenly, my babies grew up. (Who knew that time really does fly?) They didn’t need me 24/7. Oh, I was still called on to do laundry, find school books, feed them and listen, but I found hours of free time just begging to be filled.

And fill it I did. You name it, I have chaired it, worked on it, organized it or volunteered for it. I am, as my husband lovingly refers to as, a Professional Volunteer.

My ultimate goal: find out what it is I want to be when I grow up.

And I realized, it’s not easy.

I searched on line for other moms in my position, but found most Blogs revolved around young moms with children, crafty moms, gourmet-chef moms, moms who homeschool their children or moms who did all of the above. (And if you’re looking on this blog for one of those moms, I’m sorry to say you won’t find her here.)

My goal with Moms in Transition (MIT) is to create a community of moms who are past the play-date stage and looking forward to the next stage – if only we knew what it was. We’ve spent years taking care of others, and now it’s our time to take care of ourselves. We are searching.

I welcome those moms who are in the same boat: struggling to find their new role in life. Let me know what you are doing to find your niche.

I welcome those moms who have already figured it out. Please, share your story.

It’s our turn! Now what?

Let’s find out together.

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