Being part of a team is important

Some of you know that I only started running 3 years ago. I’ve been going out by myself, setting myself goals and achieving them. As with all things in my life, there’s been ups and downs. Since April when I completed my first public 5km run I’ve had back & leg problems and haven’t run so much. I lost my confidence. As with a lot of things, one small knock and it sets us back a long way. So, I decided to join in the coaching sessions at the local athletic club that the boys go to, Chorley Athletic & Triathlon Club. I’m loving it! If someone had told me a few months ago that I’d enjoy running up and down steps for fun, I’d have laughed at them! But that’s just it! I’m slower than all the 6 year olds, but it doesn’t matter. Everyone is there to have a good time and get fitter and stronger in their own way. Yes, there are some better athletes who go, and a lot of them compete, but I’ve been welcomed in to enjoy this activity in my own way. I guess I’ve welcomed being part of a team and having other people encourage me, even my family. They have helped me regain my confidence. I’m still not running as many times a week as I was, but I’m spending time strengthening other parts of my body that have been neglected these past few years. I still have some goals, but they’re no longer as important as enjoying the Tuesday night coaching sessions. Adults and Juniors train at the same...

I’m not ready, but not sure I would ever be!

Tomorrow is a big day for me. But I’m not ready for it. I’ve known about it since January when I set my personal goals for the year. It’s been in my diary since then, and I’ve sort of being preparing for it. But I haven’t done enough. These last few weeks I’ve been wondering whether to put it off, not do it. What would that achieve though? Would I fail at the first hurdle? Would I just set myself back? Or would it be more sensible to just forget about what’s written in my diary? That’s easy isn’t it? No-one else knows. It’s a personal goal, so it’s not going to affect anyone else, or my business goals. When thinking about it whilst away, I decided that I’d never be ready to take this step. As it’s a personal goal, no-one is chasing me up, so I’ve got to do it myself. There are no risks involved apart from my pride, so why not just do it? I was reminded that I ‘fell’ pregnant when we weren’t ready; that I ‘happened’ to start a business at probably the most difficult time in my life; and, there’s never a ‘right’ time to do anything. We have to make it right ourselves. If we want to achieve something, we have it within ourselves to do it, whether we have support from others or not. Our decisions may not affect others, but are we being true to ourselves if we don’t get on and achieve? So, tomorrow at 7pm I’ll be starting my first ever public 5km run. In my 2...

What a difference a week makes

Some of you will know I’ve had a tough week. I’ve stopped hiding when life is tough, but often ask for support from online friends. Thank you for your kind words and thoughts. This Monday is so different to last week! Last week saw my boys back at school (first day), husband in bed with awful toothache & infection, and me on a treadmill trying to make sure all my jobs, and his jobs were completed. It was very task orientated. The family certainly came first – eating, clothes, activities, and getting hubby well again. The business had to be put on hold. Which isn’t great when you’re a customer facing company! Today, it’s been a delight. Hard work, and running around in Mum’s taxi tonight to school sportshall competition, then onto their club athletics. But I’ve made it, and feel OK. Tired, but OK. Our main ‘problem’ this last week has been supporting someone in the family, who lives 100 miles away. The Friday before school started we all dropped what we were doing and took to action stations to support him and his partner. It’s been an emotional roller coaster. We’re not through the worst yet, but this week we’re able to plan our support (and my husband is not in pain, so is able to function within the household). There’s all sorts of extended family implications with this illness. There’s already been back biting, but hopefully, there’s a plan in place to get through the next few important weeks. Information has been sought, (but not always shared with the right people); plans have been put in...

Achieving Goals – doesn’t it feel good!

Last week I almost achieved a personal goal I’d set earlier this year. I almost ran the whole 5k Race for Life at Wigan. I think with a flatter course, I’d have achieved the running part of it with the adrenaline of being with over 1000 other women, supporting the same cause. My goal at the start of the year was to be able to run for 30 minutes without stopping. Quite a big goal for me, as I haven’t really done much exercise since University! I’ve enjoyed my running, and keep it as time out for me, early in the morning when no-one else is up and about. This goal turned into something else when @thymedeli said, “You should do a 5k run in the summer. That’s about 30 minutes”. Ha! My response was along the lines of, “My goal is for the END of the year, not half way through it!”. Nevertheless, she persuaded me to give it a go. So, for the first time ever, I entered a race! I’m so pleased I did. Even though I’d only been on one 5km route prior to the raceforlife itself, I knew that if the terrain was flattish, I’d achieve my goal. Emotionally it was a draining experience. It was the first time in a while I thought “I wish my Mum was alive”, but it was the second anniversary of her funeral. She was with me, and proud of me, I could feel it. I cried with sadness before we started, and I cried with joy at the end. But in the running part I stayed focused...

Guest Blog – Can massage help with PND?

So you have waited 9 expectant months for this to happen, you are sent home from hospital or maybe your baby was born at home.  For the first few days it all seems to pass in a blur, hopefully you’ll have some support from your partner; they will have been allowed to take some time off. You midwife will visit you for the first ten days and then sign you off to a health visitor, then when the dust settles and the flowers start to wilt and the presents stop coming it really hits home that this it, and it’s up to you to feed, clothe and care for this tiny helpless creature. It’s totally fine to have bad days, we’ve all had days when all you seem to do is feed the baby all day and by the time your partner gets in from work you are still in your pj’s, you haven’t brushed your teeth and there’s a nagging feeling at the back of your mind that if you don’t get away from your little one you may just cry for the rest of the week/month/ year. BUT, and I say but, these feelings come and go. Some days the sun will be shining and you’ll manage to leave the house before lunch, without forgetting nappies, tissues, wipes etc, meet with friends, go to the park or maybe even go to the shops. What is a worry is when you can’t get dressed day in day out, you don’t leave home, you feel unable to confide even with your closest confidant that you really are not coping....

When life throws you a curved ball

Is your life turning out how you dreamt it would when you were little? Life doesn’t always go according to plan for everybody, and when my middle child was born 10 years ago with various disabilities after a straightforward pregnancy and birth, it really threw me.  This outcome was never a possibility, and was not something that I had ever considered. To make matters worse, 2 of my good friends were also expecting within 2 weeks of me, and I had no idea how to tell them the news without scaring them.  I seemed to be surrounded by other “normal” families, and felt completely isolated. My turning point was when I read “Welcome to Holland” by Emily Perl Kingsley, (http://www.downsyndromebutnotout.com/down-syndrome-welcome-to-holland.asp) and after a while, instead of thinking about what I hadn’t got, I could instead appreciate what I was fortunate enough to have. Now, 10 years on, my life has gone down a completely different path to where it would probably have led me otherwise, in terms of work, house and even friends. My work is dedicated to supporting other parents who have had a challenging experience of pregnancy, birth or early parenthood by coordinating the NCT Shared Experiences Helpline. The helpline puts callers in touch with a volunteer who has had a similar experience.  (http://www.nct.org.uk/info-centre/getting-help/helplines). My little amount of spare time is dedicated to supporting my local Parents Forum – BACPAC – Bolton Area Council for Parents and Carers – Working Together for Disabled Children which run events and campaign for families with disabled children.  (www.bacpacbolton.org.uk) Through both my paid work and my voluntary work I try to...