Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Talkin' Bout A Resolution

Below is a post I made on my private blog in January. It seems that March is more of a time of reflection and resolutions for me because of the reminders to my own mortality. I think I will deviate from the trend of New Years resolutions from now on and operate on Spring Resolutions. 

My apologies to those of you that have read this post already. 


I looked back on last January's posts in the hopes of finding some resolution list but alas I bucked the trend last year as well. I always pretend that I have transcended resolutions but that is not really the case, it's more that I am either too lazy or too non-committal to actually follow through on any of them. So I don't bother.

Losing weight or getting in shape is often on people's lists, and like many women I always feel like I would be happy to see some changes with my body. Last year I got into probably the best shape of my life (it's all relative remember--when I look at some of my homegirls I feel like I should be on an intervention television show for fatties) as I trained for my Himalayan trip. I really didn't want to be sucking wind in the mountains trying to keep up with what I imagined would be a bunch of type-A-rugged-outdoorsy-altruistic-medical people. I ran, biked, and hiked all summer and damnnnnn! I was feeling good.

Then I ate myself into a stupor everyday for a month in India (the only comfort when you are living in a tent for a month--is food). I came back 10 lbs heavier and definitely not in the shape I left in.
I came back really discouraged and doughy. I basically felt sorry for myself and my transient lifestyle that was "keeping me from getting back into shape" (what I was telling myself as an excuse).

Then in February I went to visit my good friend Jody who was dying of cancer. This beautiful woman who was the picture of health not 6 months earlier was now conducting business as a bald, eyebrow-less fireball from her bed in hospice. After that first visit I drove home feeling greatly inspired by her grit, tenacity, and bravery (I still am inspired by her on a daily basis by the way).

I finally saw how I wasn't doing everything in my power to improve how I felt about myself, I wasn't doing everything in my power to make the most out of my healthy, capable body. Jody was a young woman dying of cancer and every single day she did what she could to be as strong as possible, and as happy as possible. I decided I would use her to remind me of all the things I needed to be grateful for and that every time I got the chance to skip, dance, jump, run I would do so in honor of her--knowing that if she could have, she would have been there beside me. And also that I would remember her short life every time I got really down over something as superficial and stupid as gaining a few pounds or seeing a dimple of cellulite. As she lay dying she never said that she wished she'd been able to run farther or lift heavier weights. She would have been thrilled to live another day even though she couldn't even walk anymore.

So I am reminding myself, this New Years about what I really want to have as my resolutions. And also asking myself, what is the motivation behind these resolutions??

  • I will take all the opportunities I can to be active, even if it just means going for a walk with Tobie after dinner.  Why? Because I can. Because I am healthy and able and there is no excuse for not being as physically healthy as possible. I am never going to be a world-class climber, ace skier, or competitive runner but I want to be able to do the things I enjoy for as long as possible and that means continually laying down the groundwork. I will also have this commitment because my sleeping and thinking improve when I am physically active. 
  • I will practice mandolin at least 4 times a week for a minimum of 20 mins.  Why? Because there is more to life than memorizing clotting cascades and someday I am going to be in the real world again and in that real world I will want to be playing music with my friends. I also feel the need to use other areas of my brain besides the 'rote memory' section.
  • I will force Tobie to speak French with me at for at least 30 mins every night. Why? Because if I am going to get a residency in Quebec I have to dazzle them with my fluency. 
  • I will continue to do yoga at least 5 times a week--even if it is only a 20 min session. Why? See reason one.  And because it feels good. And because I want to be one of those 80 year old ladies at the drop in classes that can bend herself into a pretzel and blow the 20 somethings minds. 
  • I will waste less time on FB.  Why? Because there is more to life than sitting, slack-jawed in front of my computer staring at bar photos of people I went to high school with.
  • I will be happier with the way I look. Why? Because it takes a lot of emotional energy to constantly berate myself for not being thinner, stronger, faster.  Today my pilates instructor actually said to me when I was talking to her about this other class she teaches "oh don't go to the intro class, you're obviously in good shape and in training, just come to the class". I was shocked and flattered.  When I look in the mirror all I see is the sins, none of the discipline. If someone like her makes a remark like that to me I should take it to heart and believe it! You're obviously in shape?? Ok! Yeah! I am! Woot! 
  • I will spend more time writing, whether it is rambles on this blog, or posts on Asystole. Why? Because the only way to get better at something is to practice practice practice. If I am ever going to be serious about writing it is not going to suddenly happen over night. I need to be disciplined about it.
  • I will stop comparing myself to others at all times. Why? Because it makes me feel bad. In school it is pointless to compare myself because I know about the real-world truths about good doctors...they weren't necessarily the top of their class. I will be a good doctor just like I was a good nurse. Not acing the anatomy spotter does not equal being doomed to becoming a bad doctor. 
  • I will endeavor to remind myself of the fact that I spent the last few years of my life with the sole goal of getting into medical school. Now I am here, I better make the best of it. Why? Because I already feel myself counting down the minutes until I am done medical school/residency/paying off my student loans. I don't want to always have my head space be in the place I am moving toward. I am studying what I love, I am in love, and life is good. So stop whining. 
Phew! I didn't think that list was going to be so damn long. Maybe I should post it on my wall as a constant reminder. 

So here's to another year of surprises, growth, and change. May this year be as enriching as the past 29.


Yes, how am I adhering to my resolutions??


Coop de Ville said...

Thanks for reposting--since I hadn't read it previously. I like your outlook. Keep on keeping on!

Albinoblackbear said...

Cheers CDV! I wanted to remind myself of my goals and thought this was a good time to do so.