I went to the gym yesterday morning for the first time in 3 weeks. While for some that might be a welcome break, for me it was a long, torturous layoff. I’ve been in a gym groove for some time now, and I acknowledge it’s been a little bit easier having looser time restrictions since I’ve stopped working for the Man. So when I can’t go, not only do I miss the physical activity, but it takes a toll on my mental health. And in times like these, to limit stress and keep my head above water, I need all the mental health I can get. (Note: even though I don’t have strict time commitments, I still try to get to the gym by 5:45AM. I’m awesome. I just patted myself on the back.)
3 weeks ago I stroined my grain. And I swear I’ve told 3 different people on separate occasions just that. Obviously my tongue had gotten tied – what I wanted to say was that I pulled an oblique. (I’m kidding – I just wanted to type oblique because it sounds cool and like I know my stuff. Truth is I didn’t really even know what an oblique was until I just looked it up.) My diagnosis was a strained groin. And the most recent marble-mouthed episode happened this morning; I had to tell a fellow meathead (indulge me for a moment — did you get tickets to my gun show?) why I hadn’t been to the gym in 3 weeks so he didn’t think I was slacking. Of course, I guarantee he couldn’t care less, but that’s what we do in this community, chat about something to do, anything to do with working out. Our conversation ended with me sharing my prescription: take a couple of weeks off, ease back in and make sure to “baby the groin.” This meant not working out legs and avoiding abs work because the muscles in that region are all interconnected. Meat reassured me this wasn’t that big a deal because “the summer’s over so who gives a sh!t.” Thanks twenty-six year old Meat.
Stroined my grain? The daily stress is getting to me. As I confirmed on Wikipedia, the aribiter of all things… life, “the effects of stress on memory include interference with one’s capacity to encode and ability to retrieve information.” Not only did I have that slip up, but I noticed I’m now forgetting things. I was always sharp as a knife, as good as hopstop.com, when navigating the NYC public transportation system, but for the life of me, I recently couldn’t recall subway stops I’ve been familiar with for years. (And as a lifelong New Yorker, this is definitely a chink in one’s armor.) In a way I hope it’s just stress and not me losing my mind or getting old. Or suffering the effects of days gone by.
I started my own business. It’s a marketing company and we have a killer product — an infant keepsake that not only enhances a forever moment with adorable, but can also express parents’ interests through their children as well. We’ve yet to launch the product. In fact, I haven’t even completed a viable prototype. I know slow and steady wins the race but there’s something to be said for getting it done. And I haven’t. Yet. And since I’ve been very active developing this product, including a month long, intensive, entrepreneurial course, writing a business plan, developing financials, etc., I’ve conversely been too passive in trying to land something that will bring money into our household… a job. And money’s gotten real tight so it’s time to pivot a little. And now I must find a job. And I, like most folks, am not looking forward to immersing myself in the process. So much so that it finally hit me yesterday, and I carried such stress that it manifested itself as pain in my shoulders which literally caused me to shrug for most of the day. And be blue. Very blue. Even my daughter couldn’t cheer me up when I picked her up from school. I wasn’t despondent, but I wasn’t my happy-go-lucky self. I actually haven’t been that way for a couple of weeks now but yesterday, it got pretty bad.
As the evening drew later, my daughter and I had dinner, I bathed her and then we played with some Legos. We started building a house, which was comprised of one big tower. As my daughter turned to grab a car, she knocked the tower over. She whined a sad note en route to a full cry but I cut it off. I told her that if we knocked down the tower, all we have to do is build it back up. And we did. Until she knocked it down again. And this time I asked her, “when we knock down the tower, Gemma, what do we do?”, and she looked at me and said, “we build it back up.” And I got the message loud and clear from my 3 year old daughter. I will pick myself up, dust myself off, smile and build it back up. Because world, it’s very much still on!