The question here is... Do I still "got it”? (Part I)
I consider myself active. As a mother, the definition of active has ebbed and flowed as my body adjusted to its latest size, shape and leaking parts. It also became a much more careful version of active with the “age appropriate” womanly activities like running, spinning, aerobics etc. I miss terribly the days of organized sports, everything from the sweat and tears to the locker signs and camaraderie. Especially over the last 5 years, these sorts of activities took a backseat to having babies, breastfeeding and chasing toddlers. It was more trouble than it was worth to commit to anything where I would need 2 free hands.
[singlepic id=19 w=320 h=240 float=left]But I’ve done what I could. On a daily basis, while playing mom, I try to sneak in something athletic with the girls in tote. I show off for them and make up games against myself. I benched them as babies. Pushing the double stroller, huffing and puffing, I climb hills, off-roading over tree roots, making turns on 2 wheels. The girls think they are on a carnival ride but it’s all for my own selfish sweaty enjoyment. In the living room, I fly the girls like airplanes and balance them on my feet practicing for the day that Simon Cowell calls me to be a part of the mom version cirque du soleil show. At the mom-tot gymnastics class, I tend to be an overachiever (easy mam, this class if for the kids!). “Okay Eva, let me show you, look how I walk on the balance beam, Eva, like this.” … and then sneak over to the horse and flip into the foam pit. (Ry, you go next.)
I think it is time to take my skills back to the streets, in the adult arena… to feed my burning urge to aggressively compete and be physically challenged. Then my subconscious chimes in,
“Whoa! Settle down old lady… you are a mom, and you’re 35 years old… and really, do you still got it?” Good question.
[singlepic id=28 w=320 h=240 float=right]Recently, I’ve had a few experiences that tested my athleticism as well as my confidence to get out there again and JUST DO IT! What a better way than with America’s favorite past-time, baseball. Well, a slightly adjusted version of that… co-ed beer league softball. My brother was putting together a team and asked us to play. It seemed very doable and I finally felt ready to get back in the swing of things (pun). I played softball all growing up and in high school and then only few times since.
The first game, we all came out swinging… and hitting and running… and hurting ourselves. We thought we had done an adequate warm-up and stretch-out but apparently, it takes a little extra these days. After the first game, not only was I was searching for the heating pad and the ben-gay but Freddy (my husband) was added to the injured list. He is out for the rest of the season with a pulled hammy. Our team thought he was hot-dogging it, sliding into second but he was actually just collapsing from the pain.
Besides the physical pain of tweaked backs and pulled muscles, the fear is tough to manage too. As the ball rockets to me in centerfield, my feet start to dance and I can’t help but let out a little girlie shriek and a few swear words. My sister in law, Joyel practices falling down since that’s her signature move. We might change our team name to “old crippled people”. These “old moments” were a little unexpected but 5 weeks in and I figured out how to prepare this 35 year old body for the mad dashes to 1stbase and long tosses from centerfield. Basically, I have to run a mile to warm up, then stretch…do some windsprints, stretch… throw the ball around, stretch, bend, twist, reach and then stretch again. So, do I still got it… let’s just say its coming back!
One of the best parts of the game is to see my kids cheering for us (Mea says, “3up, 3down!”) while they play in the dirt with their cousins! After the game, they run the bases… just like we did at my mom’s softball games when we were little and she was busy staying young.
Coming soon… Part II, a 2nd recent second story of testing my ability and courage came last weekend. To spoil the ending… yes, with help from my sisters, I still got it!