Alright, I’ve actually been dying to write but its been difficult since we’ve been keeping a secret. And I haven’t stopped working out at but no matter how much I work out I’m just going to be getting bigger because….I’m pregnant!
Everything I’ve wanted to write about has been directly or indirectly affected by my surprise pregnancy so I just had to wait. But now, I am 12+ weeks pregnant, we’ve told the family and friends, heard the heart beat and seen the little jelly bean swimming and kicking, so I can be super fantastically excited and open about it!
I have NEVER been pregnant before. I’m 34 years old and never so much had a pregnancy scare. Ok, not completely true, there was a time I thought I could possibly be pregnant but it turned out I had just lost my period again, this time it would last 7 years (the first time I lost my period it was a 10 year drought). I took so many mandatory pregnancy tests during those 7 years that I just started to roll my eyes and yawn before every very much expected negative result.
I had just in the past 2 years gotten my period back, though not reliably. A skipped month or two never gave me pause but an appreciation for the money saved on tampons.
I don’t know what made me take the pregnancy test when I did actually. Hubs and I had decided nearly a year ago to not stand in the way of getting pregnant. We called this “trying” but we weren’t actually trying. I wasn’t tracking my ovulation or even my periods (don’t tell my doctor), we weren’t setting up times to “try” or really anything other than just having unprotected sex when we felt like it. What we were actually doing to “try” was for me to go to school so I could have a career conducive to the family life we would want and Dan working towards having a career here in town. But I guess on some deep level I didn’t believe I’d actually ever be able to conceive so I was really trying to construct a journey of happiness that included career achievements that were meaningful to me, the ability to travel and live where we wanted to and be performers AND homeowners.
Enter the new year (or just before) and I had been very unhappy with my body, my injuries, the trajectory of my career path, the time spent away from Dan and I was searching for structure and mostly….joy. It seems sometime during 2015 joy started draining out of me, at first slowly and then at a sickening speed and I couldn’t stop up the hole because I didn’t know where it was. I was sick and in pain near constantly. I found myself putting myself down all the time and feeling guilty that I wasn’t successful or valuable in any way I could see. Nothing made me happy. I still felt accomplishment when I performed a good show, a good run on the trapeze or spanish web. But I felt no desire to start each show, no desire to train, no joy in the audience. 2016 didn’t seem much of a change though big changes were made. I became increasingly upset with my body and tried many different paths to FORCE change upon it. But I could never settle, different diets, exercise routines. I found some release in taking dance classes and going to acting auditions in Portland but no joy in aerial work. Why? Aerial used to be my one feather in my cap. We moved and I hated Vegas, I hated myself and my seemingly continued decline. I felt like a failure in every way – my career, my body, my mental state. I tried so hard to try so hard.
Slowly things started to change. Not my body, I’m still fighting with it a bit though we’ve reached a bit of a peace treaty since its the home of another being right now. I’m letting go a bit of what wasn’t bringing me joy anymore. But redefining myself as a non performer is not really working. I just fight constantly with myself over that so I just started to not think it through. Take it a day at a time. Right before this new year, after a glorious Christmas that included a very fulfilling audition, a visit from good friends and also a bit of revelation about just how much Id been wallowing in misery, I made some decisions and changes. I joined 2 hot yoga studios and started taking classes, sometimes twice a day. I told myself I could go on a dance hiatus until I felt good about my body again (the relief poured through me). I refocused on school and finding freelance and hair and makeup opportunities. And during about 2 weeks of feeling good, feeling my body change with the hot yoga, I also got what I thought was the flu. oh well, i was still moving along. Focused, happier, and decided to drink a few glasses of wine one night after a very successful hot yoga class followed by a fruitful Yin class.
For some reason when I woke up the next morning, feeling refreshed and just slightly hungover I thought to myself – “maybe I should take a pregnancy test today before hot yoga. Just so I don’t worry about having wine at night” I to pick up Dan at the airport after my class and I had an evening of sushi and wine and tipsiness planned for us.
That was it, that was the only thought. Dan had been gone for 2 weeks but over Christmas we’d of course celebrated and enjoyed each others company. I’d been off birth control for 2 years and we’d ditched any other form of contraception a year ago.
So I peed on the stick and timed it while I got ready for class. When it showed a positive reading, I couldn’t help but feel JOY shoot through my completely unprepared body. Joy. That thing I’d been searching for for nearly 2 years. Why? this wasn’t the right time, I was in the middle of school, my body wasn’t the beautiful temple it had been in years prior, Dan was traveling all the time and I had just found my world realigning with hot yoga, cosmetology and auditioning as a vocalist. But it was undeniable joy and I’m not one to argue when happiness shows up at the door.
So here we are, both of us feeling like we won the lottery. I think we both thought (though we never spoke it before now) that we’d never get this experience of a child, a family life. We’ve spend our lives up until now traveling, leaving behind, moving moving moving, auditions and ambitions. and we’ve been so lucky and grateful, it seemed we had to sacrifice this part of life. But there is actually a baby inside my body. I heard the heartbeat! I saw it move! I pee every 35 minutes!
All those other things don’t go away. Dan and I will always be performers, travellers, ambitious and unordinary. But our priorities have shifted and our trajectory has changed and we are so grateful.
I promise I’ll talk about fitness next post!
I have not forgotten you, I promise. And I have not forgotten to keep up my daily exercise – nay, it is what keeps me sane. The ADHD demons kick in hard when I’m going to school for 8 hours (usually I get antsy in the first 10 minutes of sitting down). Even though I’ve scaled back on how long I work out (I never thought a 20-30 minute workout even counted before), getting that morning sweat sheen is now imperative. I’ve also never been a morning gym person, but alas, getting up early to take care of the puppy, then workout then school is the only thing that works. If I wait until I get home I have to wait two hours more so I can entertain dear doggie and by that time I’m beat and my workout probably won’t happen. This won’t last forever, but until I finish school I’m left to 6:30am workouts and 10pm crash times.
With the limited time allowances what have I been doing? I got a subscription to Gaia.com and I’ve been doing either the 20-30 min The FIRM workouts (with light weights) or a Mari Windsor Pilates mat workout or any 30 minute “sculpt and tone” workout. Doesn’t sound like me at all huh? I’ve never liked classes or aerobics or other people. But I have time constraints and I find I’m more motivated to push myself if I’m watching the effort that the leader is putting in. So far so good. I would have laughed at those FIRM workouts before but guys, some days I’m really sore, or I’m puffing 10 minutes in. On Saturdays and Sundays I also get an hour on the elliptical in if I can. But for now this is what I can do and I’m doing it. its not at all as athletic or hard core as I feel like i should be working out, but other things have taken priority and I have to do the best i can. I’m not a sponsored athlete (YET, wouldn’t it be great if I became amazing at something at 40?! maybe that should be my goal. I have 5 1/2 years) so I have to focus on finishing school, getting a job that supports my family, taking care of my loved ones. And working out IS a priority, its just not at the top anymore like it was when I was in between dance contracts. Evolution is hard some times, to change from one season of my life to the next has never been seamless so I shouldn’t expect it.
Anyone have quick and dirty workout suggestions?! I’ll take em’ all!
Things are changing rapidly, or more like, they just feel like they are sliding into place. My life has felt extremely scattered, my focus all over the place. It’s been extremely frustrating. But all of a sudden all the lack of focus made sense. This is going to be a vague post and I apologise in advance. but I found a sense of peace today. I didn’t understand why everything felt wrong lately. My passion for performing, once my only driving force, felt off. Like I wanted to want it and I don’t know who am if I don’t have a burning drive to train and perform. But nothing I did felt right, it felt like being caged. I’d get excited in theory and then when I showed up it felt….off. With a few exceptions. There have been a few gigs and auditions that felt really good. and the rest just didn’t make sense.
So here I am and plans have changed once again. But in a beautiful way. Now I have a focus. Its interesting how sometimes you just have to wait and trust that the universe will open the doors and you’ll know which ones to go through.
I’m going back to finish cosmetology school, but I’m going full time. No splitting myself in a million different directions because I’m afraid to commit and lose out on other options. My focus will be school, taking care of my family (Dan and Gypsy) and personal fitness (yoga and cardio). That’s it. I trust the direction my life is going and I’m actually really excited! I’ve love the life I’ve had. I can finally see that I’ve done some amazing things and anything I do after is just adding to it, not taking away. I thought watching the deaths of my possible selves (full time aerialist, dancer and teacher, broadway bound triple threat) meant I failed but it doesn’t. I’ve done so many things in my lifetime and my career. I’ve had a successful and satisfying career in performing that has allowed me to do – aerial work, dance, voice, acting, film, stunts, choreography and sample many different cultures. I’ve been able to travel and work with my husband and some really great people. I have no regrets heading into this next phase of my life. But it is a next phase. Travel has dropped off, dancing ended yesterday, I haven’t done aerial work for 6 months. I’ve actually been singing more and I’m lucky to be a part of a production of the Vagina Monologues next month. I’m hard working, I’m loving and smart. Its time for the “next”. I’m not saying I’ll never perform again. It’s just not first priority anymore. and I’m at peace. Peace is a welcome feeling 🙂
Yoga is my jam. I’m feeling my body change and stretch and grow and strengthen with each class. It’s really important to do it nearly every day, I can see that now. I needed to pick something and work on letting it work my body. And yoga chose me right now. I was loving the hot classes and the teachers I had there. But because a change in my health and circumstances I have to find another way. No more hot yoga and I need more accessibility and I’ll be honest, I need to not have to spend $80 a month to get my yoga on.
So I found the my solution. Gaia.com I’ve looked at heaps of streaming yoga classes and I have a few downloaded. My favourites being my Tara Stiles classes. But they aren’t advanced enough to keep pushing me or varied enough. but on Gaia.com I pay $10 a month to have unlimited to access to tons of yoga classes and pilates, meditation, documentaries. The classes range from beginner to advanced with all different styles and focuses. Bonus that I’m loving pilates too and Mari Windsor’s classes are included.
This morning I did an ashtanga flow class for intermediate practitioners. Now here’s the thing, I’m pushed harder in class with an instructor present and I sweat more when it’s 100 degrees. But that just means I need to step up my own practice and when I can drop in to led classes. For now this is what I have to do so its up to me to keep moving forward and challenging myself.
And of course, continue cardio . I’m loving the elliptical especially since its been raining like crazy but I’ve gotta hit the pavement soon. There’s a 15k I’m longing to do in February (Hot Chocolate Run!).
Life is music
music is life
I bend and I fold
I’m one with the tide
I live in the rhythm
I feel in my soul
I move to the beat
that my hearts grown to know
but sometimes I falter
forget whats inside
sometimes I question
I doubt and I hide
but saving my soul
over and again
the music my lover
my saviour, my friend
I’ve had a great day and I attribute some of that to the weather taking a turn towards “spring” and some of it to enough sleep, not being sick, having goals. I got a bunch ticked off my to do list, I got an hour of sweating in this morning, AFTER I took the pup for an hour long walk. She loves being outside, she’s got a true spaniel nature.
But I’d be lying if I didn’t tell you that music has made my day today. I’ve always been deeply connected music, all kinds. Rhythm runs inside me, moving me, changing me, shaping me from the inside out. Whenever I have felt “flow” its never been silent, never been without music. Every powerful experience connecting me to the universe has had a soundtrack. Ive felt this connection while – running, dancing, spinning from my neck, during yoga. Writing this makes me wonder why I ever stop moving to music, EVER. Sometimes you hit a sound that moves you into alignment or maybe it just highlights that you are in alignment. Today while browsing Apple music to give me some elliptical sounds I found David Gray’s 2014 album Mutineers. How did I miss that in 2014? I guess it wasn’t time for me to hear it. Today was, I moved and my body and mind came into alignment, I flowed, I felt the invisible current of the universe envelop me and I was comforted. I’m on the right path. Thank you.
David Gray has been the soundtrack for other eras of transformation for me. 2005 when I lived in Santa Ana and I would go on long walks with my iPod shuffle (remember the first one that looked like a stick of gum?) and 2009 in the brief 2 weeks between getting dumped, surviving a motorcycle accident and moving to Singapore. David Gray’s music is full of soul. If I ever got to meet him I’d probably thank him for creating the sound track to my evolution.
Read these lyrics from part of his song “Back in the World Again” and see if you’re moved to hear the whole thing
“Every day when I open my eyes now
It feels like a Saturday
Taking down from the shelf
All the parts of myself
That I packed away
If it’s love put the joy in my heart
Is it God by another name
Who’s to say how it goes
All I know is
I’m back in the world again
Like the lift of a curse
Got a whole different person
Inside my head
No more trudging around
Stony eyed through the town
Like the living dead no
It’s love that lifts us from the dark
Is it God by another name
Who’s to say how it goes
All I know is
I’m back in the world again
Back in the world again
It’s the only way to be
It’s the only way to be
I’m naked like a tree
It’s the only way to be
I’m naked like a tree
It’s the only way to be”
And I agree, we all should be naked like a tree. Thank you David Gray for once again telling me what I need to hear, just when I need to hear it.
I often have very vivid and intense dreams. My dream life is nearly as dynamic as my awake life. I wish I’d had the forethought to keep a dream journal since childhood but alas, no forethought.
Las night my dream was very detailed, but it’s starting to fade away. I’d had an accident and went on a cruise with my best friend Melanie and her family and my husband. And it was understood that I had to perform on the cruise but everyone was worried that I couldn’t. No one had told me what would happen to me after the “accident” although I don’t know what the accident was. I looked the same I do now but I was younger, I know I was younger because I wasn’t thinking like 34 year old me, I was thinking like I did when I was 18- mid twenties. Things were difficult and I could barely move my legs. I got up from the table and fell flat on the ground. They then told me that after my accident I was supposed to be paralysed but they hadn’t told me because they thought it would break my spirit. I was only partially shattered, I didn’t believe that could happen. So I tried and woodenly I could feel a little bit, I could walk a little bit but holding on to things to hold me up. How was I going to perform? I slowly made my way to the aerial gym and I worked my way up to a lyra and hung on it, but the lyra turned into silks material (so it wasn’t solid) and the mats built up under me until i had no room to hang under it. There were tons of people around training on different apparatus (theres no way an amazing training room like this would fit on a cruise ship) and I was struggling to get my brain to work my legs but they were working.
I woke up frustrated and confused. But relieved that I could still use my legs and thankful for all my faculties. I am very lucky especially with how cavalier I’ve been with body throughout my life. And to top it off today is one beautiful day after a string of freeing cold days. It’s sunny and feels like spring (even though we are still at the beginning of winter). So to celebrate I’m going for a jog.
Well my run on Friday was like running through goo. I hate being sick so I usually just try to pretend like I’m not but I felt terrible. I meant to run 5 but stopped at 3 miles and walked the last 2 miles home and I took Saturday off completely. I hadn’t planned to but I woke up late, I ran some errands, I hung out with a friend and kept thinking I could hit 2 yoga classes at night but I’d read the schedule wrong. DRAT! but it was probably for the best because though I’m still a bit sick I’m feeling a lot better today. I woke up ready to go this morning, got an hour of cardio done on the elliptical, talked to Dan and got a heap of stuff done. SO I’ve amended my plan. I have to do at least an hour of cardio first thing in the morning. It doesn’t have to be 5 miles of running, it can be a run, elliptical, power walk, rollerblading (yes I have rollerblades), or biking. But spending an hour sweating first thing in the morning really does something good for my state of mind. Now I’m cuddling my pup until hot yoga tonight – I double checked the schedule.
I’m looking forward to the week ahead! I’ve got my last week of shows at Planet Hollywood, my new fitness regime, my first rehearsal for The Vagina Monologues, a few auditions and preparing to go back to school. So here’s hoping all the rest I’ve had this week means I’m going to be feeling 100%.
I’m sick. I’m full of mucous, I think I’m comprised of 85% mucous right now. I’ve got a fever, I’m having restless nights. But I’m not busy during the days and it’s driving me nuts to be able to rest. I’m tired and feel like shit but I also feel like shit because I have nothing I HAVE to do until work at night. So for the third day in a row I sat with my also sick puppy in my lap, curled up on the couch until afternoon and then I have to sweat. I feel chubby and out of shape and sick and awful. What do you do when you’re sick? most people my age have to work and take care of children.
Waaah waaah wahh right? I have to set a plan. Will I lose weight if I eat the same thing everyday so I don’t have the option to eat anything else? Will it help if I run 5 miles every morning except Sunday, do abs 3xs a week, do hot yoga 4xs a week and eat no more than 1200 calories a day? That actually sounds solid to me and I just free-wrote that. I thought about going to P90x but I don’t want to bulk up again. I want to get smaller, smaller, smaller. Which may sound terrible to other people. But I’m tired of getting turned down for jobs because I’m not fit enough or SMALL enough. I have big legs and yes I’m genetically predisposed. But I haven’t worked hard enough to change that. I don’t think skinny is best or that smaller is better. But I want to be smaller than I am now. And I know I can be I just haven’t worked hard enough.
And I am going back to school on Jan 16th but instead of flaming out because I have too much going on, I’m going to part time school so I can dance and sing for work, workout and take care of my family life too. That is my plan. Wow, that came out easier than I thought. But now to just do it.
What will I eat? I need it simple because I get overwhelmed really easily. What about this:
Monday – Saturday is always the same:
Breakfast and Lunch – Raw Meal shake with soy milk
Dinner – One of the following vegan option: vegetable sushi, salad with avocado, pumpkin soup or tofu stirfy
Other – coffee, tea, water, 1 banana per day
Sunday Cheat Day. I haven’t had a plan that included a cheat day in years but it really helped me with structure before and also not plateauing from too low a calories. A once a week calorie spike can be helpful.
I’m not going to lie – 5 miles every day but Sunday is really ambitious. but right now I’m lingering at beginner fitness level – a 3 miler somedays, a beach bodies dvd, one yoga class as my workout for the day. I’m letting myself be beginner instead of pushing myself to be better and it’s bleeding into the rest of my life. I can do anything I just have to want it enough. I’ve wanted it to be easy this year. I was hoping to find a way to be naturally athletic, just not have to work for it. I looked around and felt like most people don’t have to work for it as much as I have. But that’s not true, that’s lazy and childish. I wanted to be lazy so I was. But the consequences, I didn’t like very much. So now I’m doing something about it.
I just finished Ab Ripper x so I guess it’s time to run 5 miles….
I love windy days like today – i love the drama and the feeling of just slight danger. I’m not sure why.
I came down with something and yesterday, after a fitful sleep I tried to rest most the day with my fever, swollen glands, full sinus cavities. I hate feeling sick like this because it doesn’t seem sick enough to take a rest day but I feel like utter crap and completely devoid of energy. I did let myself rest yesterday, sticking to chores at home until the show at night. Last night I had a similarly crappy night that involved restlessness, exhaustion, cold sweat, having to pee, and taking the puppy out TWICE between 3 and 6am (this isn’t normal for her she usually sleeps through the night like a champ 8-10 hours. she’s sick right now too in solidarity with me). I was frustrated when I woke up because I feel like a chubby blob with nothing to do who’s wasting her life away. But I quickly turned that line of thinking around. After the morning routine with pup, i pumped out as many pull ups and chin ups as I could to get me going and then when on an easy 3 mile jog. I slathered myself with vicks before I went out. The combination of sweat and Vicks and the gorgeous windy day really turned it all around. I wound up feeling great and accomplished and less blobby. Im still walking around with a head full of goo and lymph nodes that look like softballs but I got myself moving and that made the rest of the day unfold better. I did laundry, ran errands, played with the pup and was hoping to get a second workout in but I think I won’t press my luck. I’m dancing tonight – not like hard hot and sweaty dancing but I’ll be moving a little so I’m giving myself a few easy days so as not to trigger strep. I’ve been here before. Many times and I’m trying to learn from the past. See below Gypsy and I lazing around…
I think I’ve mentioned it several times before but I love listening to the Rich Roll Podcast. The latest podcast featured David Goggins and if you haven’t heard of him look him up. Talk about inspiring!!! He talks about having a warrior mindset and thats my mantra for 2017. He was a Navy Seal and has done amazing things. He ran an ultra even after breaking his feet during the race. Hearing him say that your body can do a lot more than we think it can reminded me that, that has been my experience and I haven’t really pushed myself to elite levels. What would that look like? Check him out, seriously.