Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Health or Hair

Has anyone found the happy medium for Black women and exercise? This is a very serious question I’m posing. I’m not afraid to say that sweating my hair out drives me bonkers. As a natural who wears it straight (via flat iron), any bit of a workout will throw my roots in a tizzy and I’ll be rocking a poofy semi fro. To wash it after a workout, every workout, would be too much work- wash, condition, roller set under the dryer, flat iron. As I write this, it may sound easy. Most of us know it’s not and it is time consuming for those of us who have lives. To wash my hair more often than once a week, or to just flatiron that my fluffy roots into straight submission (sounds dirty, like dirt-sweat kind of dirty) a few times in a week would be too harsh. I know what to do; I just don’t know how to do it.

Not too long ago, I took a break from working out. I just procrastinated myself into a two-month gym hiatus (sad, I know). I went to the doctor and she asked how much I weighed. I had just learned my current weight minutes before I stepped into her office. She laughed when I told her. We have that kind of relationship so she can do that. I’m laughing too but wondering what is soooo funny?! Turns out as she tells me, since our last visit 8 weeks ago, I’ve gained 6 lbs. WTH???!!! Oh that was funny alright! She said, “Sam, go back to the gym…” I just smiled and nodded at her and made the promise to myself that I’d go back. The promise was easy. Working out is even easy because I love to do it (when I’m actually doing it and not a moment before), but the hair is the hard part. I wish it wasn’t so. I really do.

So I need advice, because my jeans are saying “No, Sam, don’t even try to put us on,” my doctor’s saying, “Girl, get your butt back on the elliptical,” and my man is saying “Babe, your face is a little rounder? Have you noticed that?” O_o

Who can help?! What are you doing to make sure your hair doesn’t get in the way of your health?



Sunday, September 23, 2012

Getting Sick and Its Blessing

Monday, I felt a tingling in my throat. I left work with my “work” in tow, as I was going to push through and try to complete some projects. I felt horrible as I drove home with my throat and nose on fire and my eyes watering. It was the end of the summer, and here I was dealing with a cold? Ewwww. Not something I was happy about.

I did what I had planned. I got in my bed, put my laptop on my lap, and went to work after 2 tablespoons of Dayquil and an hour nap. I only felt worse as a pounding headache added itself to my list of symptoms. By the end of my workday, I had no energy and all I wanted to do was sleep.

Tuesday, still sick and feeling much worse. Wednesday, the same. All the while I’m worrying about when I’m going back to work and when I’m going to feel better so that I can resume my busy life. This mental rush-rush lasted for a little while, until I realized that as bad as I felt, this cold (virus) will just have to run its course, and that was a better deal than continuing to live my life as I was. This “running its course” gave me an opportunity to finally sit still and re-evaluate my life.

Here I was more concerned about my job than my health. Here I was about to cram two days of GRE study time and classes into a single, sick afternoon because I had missed the first class due to my illness, and felt that I would miss a second. (As if my MBA is just not good enough right now, and an MFA in creative writing is oh so necessary…right now.) Here I was realizing that writing, my outlet and first love, had taken a backseat to “life” because everything else ate up my time. I allowed it. This cold that was taking its merry little time to leave my system helped me realize that I was not focused on the right things and I could, just like it, take my time and do what I needed to do.

It started with a chat with my beau. I swear God spoke through him to me, and it was made evident that I come first. Not in any selfish kind of way, but in that way that a mother must first place her oxygen mask on first before securing her baby’s. It was about self-preservation for the purpose of being a service to others.

I decided to concentrate on rest and hydration, making myself as comfortable as possible while I’m dealing with the temporary illness. I, then, decided to cancel the GRE classes for now. I have enough degrees in this moment. The idea of going back to school and the preparation and energy that is needed is daunting. This is not the time for daunting, energy-sucking activity. This is a time for restoration, which lead me to my next decision. It was time to make an appointment to “talk” about grief. I often wonder why I’m not crawled up in a ball somewhere depressed and crying for my big sis. I have my moments, trust. But it’s time to be proactive and use the tools available to me. So I made the appointment and now feel that I’m on the road to coping better.

I was also able to refocus on relaxation, writing, and creativity- the fun stuff. The things that make my life shimmer.

There’s a blessing in having been knocked down by a cold, or anything forceful enough to stop you in your tracks. I’m just thankful I realized what it was and was able to change my life for the better. Little, yet important steps were taken. Things look brighter and really do feel lighter. Welcoming a new season J



Friday, September 21, 2012

Last Day of Summer

Here it is, September 21, the last day of summer, and I'm realizing how tight-lipped I've been this whole season. Geez, I wished I would've blogged about the summer's events as they happened, but the past is the past. Shoulda, coulda, woulda. I will recap...and do better :-)

Mourning, still...
Work is busy as ever.
My mom came to visit twice. She was an awesome house guest even though she didn't cook for me every night like I'd wanted. :-P
Got a chance to hang with my bestie in New Orleans.
Spent time with my DC crew when I could.
Spent A LOT of ME time.
Read some good books from my reading list in the last post.
Still writing.
I didn't visit one beach. How sad is that?
Went to NY a couple of times! Super fun!
Organic Leaves is my growing baby who needed much of my attention. Still does :-)
I was ready for longterm "singlehood." I welcomed it. And then...
Love walked in...
Learned to accept help.
Realized that 3 years to 30 is now 5 months to 30. Wow!!!

Will be back next week with another post. See ya then!