Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Just Fine :-)

Lil MP in 1988!
I still remember my first day of kindergarten like it was yesterday. It was a warm, sunny August day in 1988. I was a VERY shy, doe-eyed little red headed girl who was incredibly intimidated by interacting with other kids who were merely strangers. In my favorite pink dress with my matching purse (with my favorite pony inside), my Mom walked me into the parking lot of St. William’s School. I can vividly remember her saying good bye and the feeling of her letting go of my hand. She told me I would have to stand in line by myself, and that I was going to be just fine. Being the good girl I was, I listened, stood there, and glared straight ahead at the back of the heads of the kids standing in line in front of me. I remember the burning sensation of nervousness in my chest, the curious feeling if anyone was going to like me, and the anticipation of meeting my first “real” school teacher. The anxiousness was palpable. Other kids had their parents standing with them in line, but my Mom and I had already said our good byes and I had to do this by myself. I was terrified. Then, the bell rang, and in a single file line we walked into the building. And, as my Mom promised, I was just fine. Little did I know that this would be just one of many momentous experiences in my life, and that the memory of this moment would give me the confidence to know that no matter what I was encountering, I would be just fine…just as my Mom said. I am forever grateful to my Mom for all that she has done to shape me into the woman I am today. I love you, Mom! :-)

As I’ve embarked on the beginning of other significant defining moments in my life, I always go back to that exact feeling I had on the first day of kindergarten. There are the defining moments that I anticipated like my first day of high school, getting dropped off for my freshmen year of college, completing my Master’s degree, beginning my first year of teaching, and running the Boston Marathon. And then there are the defining moments that have caught me by surprise. It is these moments that have me most reflective and reliant on the memory of that first day of kindergarten and those insistent words of my Mom reminding that I will be just fine.

What happened to me on Monday, May 13, 2013 before the Cleveland Marathon has become such an incredibly defining moment of my life, and has greatly altered my perspective. The fear of uncertainty regarding my health and well-being has been stressful beyond words. I’m still in pursuit of an explanation between the link of marathon training and what appears to be seizures that occur spontaneously when I run. Having this happen a 3rd time, for whatever reason, has changed me. In no other experience I’ve faced in my life have I felt the reality of my own mortality. Even a ruptured appendix during Graduate School didn’t strike true fear in me. But this incident certainly has, and my life has changed drastically.

It’s hard to describe in words how my life has changed. Obviously, discontinuing marathon training is part of it but not entirely. I feel more appreciative for the people in my life and more of a desire to try new things. It’s as if the incident was the jolt I needed to break from the strict routine I had been on in my life and loosened me up to new possibilities. The incident has also struck a great deal of fear in me, and I’m not sure I’ll ever feel comfortable enough again to run alone. I used to run miles upon miles in not-so-safe, desolate locations and felt no fear. Those days are over.

So what are some of these new possibilities I’m dabbling with? One is dating. If you know me, you know that deep down I’m still that shy girl intimidated by meeting strangers. So, that being said, I HATE dating. But, despite the fear and anxiety that comes with it, I’m doing it. It’s just like that first day of Kindergarten, and I know that no matter what it’s going to be just fine! So, have I been successful so far? With regards to finding a match, absolutely not. But with regards to learning more about myself and what I’m looking for, absolutely. So, who are some of these gentleman I’ve encountered over the past few weeks? In brief summary, my first encounter was with Cleveland Bar guy. He was nice, but a little too into the party scene and “hanging out” at 3am. No, thank you. Then, there was Overly Catholic guy. He literally recited Grace at dinner at a bar in Downtown Willoughby over his beer and burger. I nearly broke into the Church giggles. God and I were both rolling our eyes over this guy.  Next, there was PHD in Genetics guy. I was intrigued to hear about his research, but he found it more meaningful to show me videos he recorded on his phone of himself doing pull ups. And then last but not least, there was Overly Muscular Tattoo guy. He wore an extra small t-shirt on our date, and informed me that he works out simply to ensure his tattoos look good. All of these dudes have a few general things in common in that they’re good on paper. They have great jobs, graduate degrees, are good looking, nice, athletic, and care about their families. Also, they all did the Tough Mudder, and are a little too confident about how “bad a$$” of an experience it was. However, the main reason I’d say that none of these guys were a match is pretty simple—the chemistry just wasn’t there. And, that is just fine!

So what have these experiences taught me? First, that I’m VERY lucky to have a job that I love. I have yet to encounter a date that can agree that his job is his passion. Second, not to sound vain, but I definitely have accomplished significantly more than most individuals of my age. I was shocked to see how intimidated most of these guys were with my running experiences…and was intrigued to learn that none of them wanted to hear about them. They just wanted to talk about their own experiences with that stupid Tough Mudder thing…or wanted to show me videos of themselves doing pull-ups… or wanted to outline their daily routines on keeping their muscles inflated…etc. That being said, I’ve learned that it’s going to be difficult for me to find a person that’s okay with me being a chic that has a lot going for her. Lastly, these experiences have taught me that ultimately what I’m looking for isn’t quantifiable. The chemistry with someone is either there, or it isn’t, regardless of how good someone is on paper. I have 0% desire to settle and am okay with being single for as long as it takes until I meet the right person. It is what it is and everyone is just going to have to deal with it!

In addition to dating, I’ve been enjoying working out (in the gym), spending lots of time with my family, enjoying celebrating milestones in my friends’ lives, received the blessing of  being Godmother to my beautiful nephew Luke, and am trying not to focus on my health issues. It’s my doctors’ jobs to figure out what is wrong with me, not mine. I pray a lot, and am confident that everything is going to work out okay. God definitely works in mysterious ways, and all of this is happening for a reason I’ll understand some day.The incident that happened to me in May has commenced a new chapter in my life, and I’m confident that no matter what, as my Mom told me, I’m going to be just fine. :-)

Beach with the Nephews!

More nephews!!!

My Godson Luke!

The Logo Bachelorette celebration!!


And more weddings!


  1. I love your attitude. I do hope you get answers about the seizures though. I can imagine they are scaring the bejeebers out of you.

    1. Lol! Thank you!! I'm all out of bejeebers at this point and just hopeful for answers!

  2. One more wedding very soon and you'll be "just fine" partying on the dance floor with me.

    1. WOOOOOO WEEEEE!!! Can't wait!!!! :-D Can't believe it's just a few weeks away!!