Losing myself…….

When I start to like, when I become infatuated, I start to lose myself. The more I love, the more I lose; the longer I love the less I know where I end and he begins; I disappear. Just writing this makes me tear up, because I am intelligent enough to know how horribly wrong and unhealthy this behavior is, and I know the name for it — codependency. I thought I was cured, I thought I did the work and focused on myself and built my life so that I would not fall apart the next time I started to fall in love.
I don’t even know him yet, I haven’t even looked into his eyes in person. We’ve texted a couple of days and talked on the phone and while we seem exceedingly compatible, he has a horribly busy life and so do I, so we cannot meet for awhile yet. Maybe our schedules are too hard, he could bail on me now, he could pick someone else whose scheduled fits his instead of me…..if I show him my sad, scared, dark side, I’m sure he will run away, just like the others. It doesn’t matter that I wanted things to be over with the last one, my emotional needs drove him further away from me. I did that; maybe I’m too broken for anyone to love.
Why do I look for rejection? Why do I lose myself? Why do I become obsessed with when he will text back or who initiates conversation……etc. I’m crying as I write this because I don’t know what to do; I thought I was whole, I thought I was ready for love, but right now I’m so scared that I will fuck this up and I really think this guy is GREAT and I don’t want him to run away from me…..I need to live my life, I’m busy, he’s busy why am I so bloody needy still? What the hell???? I have this deep, intense feeling that I’m not good enough for anyone who is my equal to love, that I’m not physically attractive enough, my body is too ugly, my mind is too sad, my soul is too tortured. I know none of that is logical or true, and yet that fear that I’m unlovable is what drives me to sabotage my relationships.
I am DETERMINED not to repeat history; I must be strong, independent, driven, fierce, loving but healthy!!!!!!! I must overcome the doubts that pain me, I must run through and from the urge to contact him for reassurance. I need only to reassure myself!

Happy to know on 2/10/13 that it is only the hot cold man that drives me to lunacy. So when I feel crazy it means RUN RUN RUN!!!!!

Kelly Clarkson – Dark Side
There’s a place that I know
It’s not pretty there and few have ever gone
If I show it to you now
Will it make you run away

Or will you stay
Even if it hurts
Even if I try to push you out
Will you return?
And remind me who I really am
Please remind me who I really am

Everybody’s got a dark side
Do you love me?
Can you love mine?
Nobody’s a picture perfect
But we’re worth it
You know that we’re worth it
Will you love me?
Even with my dark side?

Like a diamond
From black dust
It’s hard to know
It can become
A few give up
So don’t give up on me
Please remind me who I really am

Everybody’s got a dark side
Do you love me?
Can you love mine?
Nobody’s a picture perfect
But we’re worth it
You know that we’re worth it
Will you love me?
Even with my dark side?

Don’t run away
Don’t run away
Just tell me that you will stay
Promise me you will stay
Don’t run away
Don’t run away
Just promise me you will stay
Promise me you will stay

Will you love me? ohh
Everybody’s got a dark side
Do you love me?
Can you love mine?
Nobody’s a picture perfect
But we’re worth it
You know that we’re worth it
Will you love me?
Even with my dark side?

Aquathlete, aquathloner…..or first day Swim-Run!

sbr-logoI called the amazing grandmother of my children yesterday to see if she would watch the babies so I could do my first day of swim-run training, and we agreed upon a time. I was exhausted so I slept until 6:27, which was a smart move, I needed that sleep. I got up, the kids both got up on their own since we slept in (that’s sleeping in for this trio), and I got everyone ready, started work at 8 and got out of the house by 9ish to head to the grandparents. The side roads were still icy but main roads are all clear, but the side roads are where I run, so I knew today would be a dreadmill run after my swim. I dropped off the kids and headed two minutes away to my rec center for my WOD, I was nervous and excited!

I’ve looked up training programs for splash n dash events and well, haven’t found anything free to help me, so I decided to wing it. I’m getting over a cold, and yesterday’s swim wore me out pretty badly, so I wasn’t sure how far I could go today and then jump out of the pool, throw on shorts, bandanna, socks, running shoes and iPhone and head to the fitness room to run. I jumped into the pool, as usual creating more of a splash than I intended and subsequently feeling like a giant pink and purple moose swimming in a competitive suit in a pool with a purpose seemingly more appropriate for a smaller, leaner 40 year old mother of two; nonetheless, I push-off the side and do the elementary backstroke for two lengths to warmup, and then I switch to the backward freestyle. The first 8 lengths were easy, so I think ok, I’ll go 16 lengths, that’s 400 meters……but if you go just 4 more lengths, that’s half of the splash n dash pool distance…..sold! So I hunkered down to do another 12 lengths, and I was really glad when I made it to 12, just 8 to go…..I started to become fatigued and my form was not good on 16, so I slowed down, focused on form, tried not to drown and finished the 500m. Yes!!! I jumped out of the pool, grabbed my towel and phone, ran to the locker room to get dressed.

Transition time took waaaaaay too long. I forgot to time all of this, but it appears my total workout ending up being about an hour and 5 minutes, and I did 2.1 on the treadmill. I have to finish this event in less than 2 hours, so I’d better get a move on with my transitions, if I’m going to do twice the distance in the water and another mile on land. Well, practice makes perfect, and today was day 1. So I make my way to the fitness room, feeling like a squishy fat freak in my wet under armour shorts with water dripping down my leg like I peed myself. I get in the room, find the light switch since I was the first one there at that moment, and I get on the dreadmill……and my yurbuds stop working. Crisis! So I did the whole workout, 3:1 intervals, no music. Torture…..and then some strange guys came in, staring at Asthma Girl Runner, and I know I’m kinda cute, but I’m also a spectacle with my breathing….so I feel like a freak show. THIS is why I run outdoors people! Honestly though, if it weren’t for needing more water (wow that’s hard work swimming then running!!!) than my 16oz bottle could hold, and knowing my kids were with their grandma waiting for me…..I could have kept going, my lungs and body both felt great. This girl can do some running, right? I am a half marathoner! That is my superhero identity, Asthma Girl Runner, now Asthma Girl Aquathlete. To infinity and beyond!

Blizzard run, almost!

>20121226-221457.jpgI bundled up so excited for my first really snowy run. They cancelled the blizzard so I thought why not? I stepped out dressed perfectly with two bottom layers, two pairs of socks, a compression tank two long sleeve shirts a jacket and gloves scarf and bandanna plus fur head wrap. Yes, I wore my fur to run. I set out and wow the snow was about six inches deeper than expected, a good foot deep but I walked my warmup and thought running would surely be easier. Or not. Trying to keep my low cadence was about impossible in the big drifts. The sidewalks were invisible, completely obscured by snow. I thought I would never make it to the river and then I was fearful of the stairs down to the path. I thought maybe not today. Let’s stay higher :-). So I ran what I could and turned around. My coach Jeff Galloway said just 4 miles more and I said not today coach I am heading home with ankles and knees intact I hope! It was cold and exhilarating and beautiful and I will do it again, I am training for the outdoor part of the splash n dash which is outdoors in February and March! I kept the music low and my eyes open, with a very healthy fear that every vehicle on the road might lose control. I was relieved when I turned the corner toward home. I enjoyed all the hoots hollers and encouragement (or was that flirting) I was given, made me feel invincible and amused. I am Asthma Girl Runner, even in a near blizzard. 20121226-221301.jpg
<br /

Why I love Christmas, or The Greatest Gift of All

Christmas_Paper_Craft_for_Kids_-_Easy_to_Make_Tree_Garland
I love Christmas, and I like to think I have Christmas magic. From where does the magic come? Everywhere, of course. Popcorn strung on the tree with my homemade paper rings as a child, giant 9 foot trees, homemade ornaments crafted by Grandmother Eleanor, the peace in my usually violent and scary home, the selflessness of my normally self-absorbed parents, the cocoa by the wood burning stove, the beautiful sparkling tree at Grandma and Grandpa’s house, the delicious desserts at Aunt Jeanette’s, the love I felt from parents who more often made me wish I was not on this earth, all of these things and more make Christmas magical.
My birthday is Christmas Eve and my mother always made it separate and wonderful from the Christmas holiday. I remember when I was 10 and she gave me Chipmunk Punk for my birthday, it was the best album ever. Those high-pitched vermin singing “Call Me” by Blondie is priceless. My house was normally a scary, walk on eggshells so as not to be broken by them environment, but we always had a d├ętente at Christmas; we had peace and love just once a year, and it was wonderful. I remember baking cookies every year. My parents absolutely should not have had custody of me, but they did, and I’ve continued wonderful Christmas memories of fresh trees and baking cookies in our home.
Even our secular version of Christmas at the Kingdom Hall with the Jehovah Witnesses in our family on my Dad’s side with everyone else on that side of the family was huge fun; everyone got together, didn’t exchange presents, hung out, listened to music and ate food; so many great memories. I remember making pumpkin squares with my Aunt Sheila and chocolate chip cookie bars too, lots of memories tied up in food. Right or wrong, mostly wrong, food is love, in my mind. I cannot get through the holidays without some of my favorite comfort foods, but that just makes me a typical American.
I don’t hesitate anymore to tell the truth about my childhood and my parents, but today, on my birthday, I can remember all of the awesome celebrations and beautiful moments we had as a family. Today, for Christmas, I can relive the magic of childhood Christmases with my own children and make wonderful memories for them. The magic of Christmas, of course, if you didn’t already figure it out, is love. Love is the greatest gift of all.

Addictions. Love, food, running….

imagesCAEOHTK0
The human mind will go to amazing lengths to protect itself from pain like putting band-aids on wounds that need debridement, antibiotics, and air. This is a very personal and self-revealing post, it's about my life journey, my struggle with addictions to food and love, and how they're entangled, inextricable from each other. I'm sharing this story in case it can help someone else with their struggles. It will not be my most eloquent blog, nor the most grammatically correct, or even the most evocative, but it is the most raw, real piece of me I care to share.
I am more than just an emotional eater; I am addicted to food. The cycle of food addiction is very similar to that addicts receive from opiates, which activate dopamine receptors. The pathway to get there is different, but the end result is the same.
When I have sought validation from love, I can abstain from food abuse to attain and maintain that love; when I am not seeking love, and feel more whole, solo, I struggle more with using food to fill that void, since I'm never really whole, just always trying to get there, alone. I have two wonderful children I share custody of, but they are not responsible for making me whole either; I know I have to be whole in order to be the best Mom I can be.
My first addiction was food, and the first emotion I ate was shame. I was a victim of abuse – sexual, emotional, and physical. I was sexually abused by the son of my mother's best friend, and I was left in his "care" for years, because he was older than I. He also abused his sister, and I had the additional shame of putting myself in harm's way to prevent him abusing her, whenever I could. For years, I felt guilty, as if I were consenting to his predatory nature, but of course, with therapy, healing, and facing my feelings head-on, I realized that it was all coercive. I felt the need to save her, since I couldn't save myself. I told my parents what was happening, but no one believed me. It wasn't until his younger brother told his parents that it stopped – for me anyway. I'll never know if she was still abused, they lived in another state by then. I ate Mike Sells potato chips, Hostess pies and Twinkies, Rain-blo bubble gum, now and later, swedish fish, gummi bears…the list of food abuses is endless. This was a secret habit, where I stole money from my abusive father's change bowl (I felt it was justified, at the time), and usually ate the food and candy alone. My addiction to junk food was born, and it later mutated into other comfort foods – ice cream, macaroni and cheese, again, the list is endless. Everything forbidden was wonderful, and my parents did not allow junk food. Shame, forbidden foods, and pain became inextricably intertwined in my mind and my dopamine receptors happily responded to the influx of horrid substances.
food addict
Right now, as I write this, I want to throw up. And eat bad things. I’m trying the novel concept of facing my problems without food. FAT chance, says the former fat girl who is overweight………again, despite being addicted to fitness. Hilarious, right? Binge less, purge more? I’m not making light of an illness, I’m talking about my own. I’ve often wished I had both bingeing and purging on my to-do list, so I wouldn’t have obesity and overweight status as additional lifetime afflictions. Fact – I’m an orphan. My mom was an emotionally abusive person, and she hasn’t been in my life since December 2005, her choice for many of those years, but since my son has never met her, I’ve made the decision to keep it that way. I’m not talking mildly toxic, I mean the kind of abuse that makes you wish you had the courage to end your life. That’s an entire novel in and of itself, so we’ll leave it at that. Borderline personality disorder, narcissistic personality disorder, social and generalized anxiety disorders are her beginning….my dad is schizophrenic and I have a domestic violence civil protection order against him, that’s pretty self-explanatory also. I’ve been psychologically evaluated, and they say that I’m normal and past the age where females typically manifest mental illness. Good news!
I am, however, codependent, always putting my relationship before myself. It started with taking care of my parents, and continued into my love relationships, even when they did not want me to take care of them. I was toxic myself; I’m not going to state whether or not I chose healthy people to love, we’re all unhealthy to different degrees; this isn’t about the people I loved, it’s about me and my addiction. I’m a recovering addict, and one of my addictions is love. I am addicted to the pain, the pleasure, of loving the ones who don’t love me back as much. Part of the reason they don’t love me as much is because, well, I love too much. Yes, there is a book about that,

    Women Who Love Too Much

, and another great book is

    The New Codependency

, I used both of those books to heal myself in the last year or so. Be prepared, if you decide to read them, to be forced to change your life. I did, and I am both single and solo….by choice.

imagesCAHEHXRF

I am still in love with a ghost, a memory, an illusion. At one time I loved a real person but over time he wasn’t that person anymore with me. I find myself unable to stop the memories the feelings, and I think I’m addicted to the pain of my former love, even more than I miss the laughter he brought to my life; love can be so sick, so twisted. The entire time I was with him, I felt alone, always seeking his validation, his acceptance, rather than feeling whole by myself. I thought if I just loved him more, if I let him more inside of me, that if I gave him more, he would love me back the way I needed to be loved. But no one can fill that hole but you. Some days my black hole looks like this….
Black-Hole-V3_1 The fact is, only you can fill your own black hole, and it can be overwhelming; sometimes it feels like it will suck you into its cold darkness forever. At times life can make the hole so big and so wide you can feel like it will swallow you and you will cease to be anything but a black hole, and it looks like this imagesCACW0N5Q If you’ve ever felt this, you are not alone. Every addict feels this way. Every abused child feels this way, we carry those abused children around inside us. Ask Dr. Drew, he’ll ask you to have a conversation with your child self, to reassure them that they’re ok now….and sometimes you just don’t feel OK, and I think I’ll just say, some days I don’t feel OK, but some days I feel really good.
tumblr_lxktl5chqg1r7jujeo1_r1_500<
I realized years before I knew what codependency was that I had an addictive personality. Both of my parents were addicted to marijuana and prescriptions, so I have always been careful with alcohol and never used drugs, food was my only abuse, and dangerous enough by itself, given my struggle with obesity. To conquer my obesity, I became, late in life, a runner, and that became my new addiction. That and starving; I was really good at starving for a year or two, but then I started to eat normally again, when I needed fuel to run. One addiction broke me of another….running slowly replaced starving as I loved running even more than I loved being thin. I’m still addicted to running, and I was addicted to CrossFit, which I’m now replacing with swimming. I’ll always be an addict, I have to find healthy addictions to survive. Emotionally, I’m a wreck when I cannot run. Today, like many days, I’m injured and cannot run, and therefore I’m not well. I’m writing this because I am struggling, and I imagine others are struggling with the same or similar demons. Today, this blog isn’t about all of my fabulous accomplishments, though I have many; today I am acknowledging that I am a work in progress, that I am human, not always Supergirl, or Batgirl, or even Asthma Runner Girl, conquerer of the running universe despite severely restricted lungs. Today, Kernie C is just a girl, a little broken by life, but healing, and never beaten. I have ripped off a lot of band-aids this year, and this post is giving them air.
>imagesCAEOHTK0

Clean slate, codependency….who cares, I just want to run!

clean-slateI’m working on giving myself a clean slate for the choices I’ve made that I don’t feel great about. I have to forgive myself in order to feel whole, clean, valued. I’m in recovery from codependency which sounds so silly, but it’s a serious problem. It means I love too much, that I look for my mate to fill a void that my childhood created. And trust me, I’m so over that, I don’t want to dwell on it anymore, I wish I could just wave a wand over it. Fact is, when I run, I feel whole, I feel clean, I feel fun, and young (do you hear the LoveSong references?). I decided some time ago that LoveSong is really about codependency, and I maintain that. When I feel those urges to cling to another person, or even my kids to give my existence purpose, I try to channel it to fitness instead, because my children need me to be whole all by myself.

Today, I ran, and I focused totally on my breathing, keeping it rhythmic and controlled, which is a huge challenge, the way my asthma works. I’m always labored, even when I talk for a long time. I don’t even remember what I thought about since it was only a 2 mile run. When runs are sucky, I will daydream about anything to distract myself, or I will try to solve my problems. For me, running is both a group and a solo activity, and I love both. When I feel overwhelmed by life, yes, I want to run from it, but mostly I just want to run until my head is clear and my heart is light.

AGR (Asthma Girl Runner) AKA Kerniec (it’s Kernie C, but people like to call me “kerniac” which is funny, since I am a bit of a maniac).