Monday, 9 December 2013

Overwhelmed... but on my way up

"I have chosen to be happy" ~ Voltaire
 

As life would have it, further to Friday's post, my grand-dad passed away Saturday morning. It's funny. Despite wishing that his time would come sooner rather than later in order for his pain to come an end, it still takes you by surprise when it happens. I had just finished my Parkrun 5k when mum called me. Then I had such a busy weekend from then on that I didn't have time to reflect on it until last night, where it all got a bit much. Luckily Barry was there to give me a big hug when I became overwhelmed.
 
The last few months have been really hard. There's no denying it. I keep trying to stay afloat and push on but the last few weeks I have really struggled. This has affected my mood and my motivation, as well as my confidence in believing I can get things done. The house is a mess. My to-do lists are ridiculously long. I'm snappy with the kids. Overall, not a nice version of me. Which just makes me feel worse.
 
But in a way, I know my grand dad is at peace now, and reunited with his daughter. His wife (my grandmother) and his eldest daughter (my mum) remain, and hopefully we can be there for them and help them ease their pain and ours. There is some comfort in knowing he's no longer suffering. And it almost feels like I had a big weight on my chest which has been lifted, as though I had been waiting for this release for a long time. Over a year in fact. And I now feel as though I'm slowly starting to climb up the mountain again, slowly but surely.
 
I therefore thought I would turn this post into a positive one and share with you what cheers me up:
 
Pharell's new song...
 
Is there anything the man can't sing? Not only does he still look amazing, but this song just makes me want to stand up, click my fingers and sing and dance like a lunatic... my favourite kind of music! Have you seen the video? That's pretty much what they do... love, love, love it! This is my main cheer-up song at the moment.
 


Lady Gaga...

Barry and I have a talent at changing words to songs, and at the moment I like to sing along to him to this song as follows "do what you want with my Baaaaaaarry!"... Makes me so happy!


 
 Little Mix...


 
I love dancing, adore it! So when I hear a good tune and there's a good dance video to go with it, in my head I become one of the dancers!
 
Zumba..
 
on that same note, I am sooo excited that I've started zumba again! My teacher is amazing, and picks out amazing songs and choreographies. Even if you are having a bad night, her enthusiasm and the music never fail to cheer you up and I can hardly walk the next day. Love it, love it, love it!
 
Running...
 
Dare I say it? Although I have only just started again, I am really enjoying running. Never thought I'd see myself write that. I have done two parkruns, including one where I drove myself there, all by myself, ran and completed a personal best, all by myself, just like that, and I was so happy! I have also found a new running partner who is great, and I am going to join a running club tomorrow night... and looking forward to it... I still need to dramatically increase my training, but so far, so good. Could I have caught the running bug?... 
 
Close relationships...
 
With everything going on lately, I have come to realise how many great friends I have. Over the years I have met some truly amazing people, and I am now blessed to have a really strong support network of people including amazing siblings, great friends and of course Barry. My main downfall is that I am rubbish at asking for help, despite their constant reminding for me to do so. But just knowing they're there, and each having their own special power, from knowing exactly how I feel to just picking up the phone to see how I am, really helps. Barry and I make sure we meet up with our various groups of friends on a regular basis and it always helps.
 
And to finish... (anyone else cried their heart out at the beginning of UP! ?)
 
 
 What cheers you up the most at the moment?
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*All images unless otherwise noted are my own, so please do not use them without my permission.*

Friday, 6 December 2013

Reminding myself why I run... because I can!

I know what I'm like. If I decide to do something, but don't tell anyone about it, it is easier to not feel guilty about not following it through. But I no longer want this. My mind and body want more. And although I have started training, I seriously need to pick it up a gear or three! I have therefore set up a sponsorship page on JustGiving, to let the world know of what I am trying to achieve, but also to remind myself of why I'm putting myself through a marathon in the first place.
 
 
As you may or may not know, in a pure moment of madness I have signed up for the Paris Marathon, to take place on 6th April 2014. I was born in Paris, I spent a year there during uni and my brother lives there now so what better marathon to do as a first? :)
 

 

 I was born in Versailles don't ya know! :)
 

 

 
My beautiful sister has been trying to get me to sign up to one for a while and to be honest, the thought has always scared me. But then, after this summer, I thought why not, what excuse do I truly have to say no and what is the worse that can happen?
 
My lovely godmother Jane ran a marathon in her fifties for the first time, and may or may not have had lung cancer already when she did. But she loved it and finished it! Jane died in July after an 8 month battle. It was an aggressive form of cancer and she could just not fight it despite her best efforts. I managed to see her before she went, and she got to meet Hugo, but I still think of her everyday. In her eulogy, she was described as a second mother to Chloe, Alexis and I, and it is true, she was just that. My mother has also lost her sister and I cannot bear to think the pain she is suffering from this loss, I cannot imagine life without Chloe or Alexis.
 
Alongside, my grand-dad is also battling terminal cancer. He was given 3 - 6 months to live back in August 2012, but he is still fighting today, although slowly losing his battle. Although not aggressive in the way Jane's cancer has been, this is equally as horrible, as it just lingers on and does not provide much comfort to my grand dad or his family.
 
I am lucky however that despite being diagnosed in 2011, my mother was successfully treated for cancer, although she still had to battle cancer and necessary surgeries. And in July this year, the best form of Cancer arrived, my son Hugo. Reminding us that where there is death, there is also life.
 
Nevertheless, cancer seems to be everywhere. I know I am not the only one in this position, as sadly many of my friends have family members battling cancer as I write. When my mum told me about Jane, I did worry about what it meant for me in terms of my chances of getting cancer, but mostly, I worried about whether this meant my children were more at risk too? As much as the doctors say no, it doesn't stop me thinking about it as cancer seems to be everywhere these days.

I will therefore be running the Paris Marathon (and the Bath half marathon as part of my training) as a reminder to make the most of life when you can, and to try and fundraise a little while I'm at it. However, as much as I love the benefits of exercising, I can be lazy about kicking myself out of the door to do it. So I have set up this page as a reminder for why I signed up for the marathon in the first place: if Jane could do it, so can I. And I am lucky to be able to run in the first place, so I am going to enjoy this every step of the way. I know I will have bad days, and will most likely think at times I cannot complete the race, but hopefully, by focussing on the good as well as the bad, this will truly be an amazing experience.
 
I know many of you have helped me raise money for Macmillan in the past, for which I am extremely grateful. I will therefore not harass you for sponsorship. But support in any way or form towards my training would mean the world to me!
 
 
Thanks for reading and helping me try to beat cancer xxxx
 
Now for the official bit about fundraising through JustGiving in case you are not familiar with them:
"Donating through JustGiving is simple, fast and totally secure. Your details are safe with JustGiving – they’ll never sell them on or send unwanted emails. Once you donate, they’ll send your money directly to the charity. So it’s the most efficient way to donate – saving time and cutting costs for the charity."
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*All images unless otherwise noted are my own, so please do not use them without my permission.*
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