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A Running Mom Redefining Her Kids…and Herself

February 24, 2010

If you’re like me, every time you watch the P&G “To their Moms, they’ll always be kids” commercial during the Olympics, you tear up as you nod your head in agreement. My children are just 8 and 4.5 (twins), but sometimes I envision a day in their future, say, my older daughter’s college graduation or my son’s wedding day, and I think how I’ll envision them still as the sweet babies they once were. Even now, when I see my twins happily play at the sensory table at preschool, I so vividly picture them crawling around in our playroom or smeared with food in their high chairs. No matter their age, they’ll always be my babies.

In athletics, I often feel frozen in time as well. Even as I train for my sixth marathon, I sometimes feel like the newbie runner I was in college. Or, time-travel even further to the non-athlete I was during childhood. Yup, my self-perception is warped. Take this morning: A few blocks into my run, I saw a leggy woman clipping along at a nice pace. I thought, “There’s no way I could catch up to her—she’s too fast!” Yet as the blocks clicked by, I realized I was gaining on her without trying.

 And now I’m the co-author on a book about running. Hard to believe on so many levels—and so exciting as well. Guess it’s time I updated my self-perception.

10 Comments leave one →
  1. February 24, 2010 12:17 pm

    So true – all of it. My kids growing up really skews the passage of time. Just yesterday I realized my daughter’s hands (she’s 4) no long have baby fat. Her fingers are getting a slim, “little kid” look, not baby chubs anymore. These little moments stop time for me for a sec and I gasp. Then I remember how old I am (44) and that time is definitely a different animal when you have kids. Good thing I started out a slow runner, I (think) I still might have a marathon PR in me somewhere. Hoping my time goes down as my age goes up.

  2. bowenshea permalink*
    February 24, 2010 12:57 pm

    I like it: Times go down as age-clock ticks up. It IS possible: I had my best racing year ever last year. PRs in every race. Smarter, more targeted training. Where there’s a will, there’s a way!

  3. Priscilla permalink
    February 24, 2010 4:13 pm

    Yes, I sometimes still see myself as the awkward, chubby, pre-teen with braces and a bad perm plodding around the track in PE. Just the other day (while on an 10 mile pre-dawn 24 degree run, nonetheless) I had to remind myself that I AM A RUNNER!

  4. February 24, 2010 7:07 pm

    Congrats for all of your accomplishments…they’re awesome!

    I love those P&G commercials. And yes, I tear up every time! My boys are now 4 1/2 and 2 1/2 and I’m constantly wondering where the time went. It just flies by! They are not babies anymore and my oldest is already talking about wanting to do a triathlon and running race with me someday! I love it, but it just makes me realize how fast they’re growing up!

    For me, I’m scheduled to do my second HIM and first marathon this fall and I’m already stressing about them. I know I have plenty of time to train, but I also know that they will be here before I know it! I have to remind myself to trust in my training and have confidence that I can do it!

    • bowenshea permalink*
      February 25, 2010 10:51 pm

      That’s the ticket: Trusting your training. Moms know all about sticking to goals they set for themselves. Exciting you are going to do your first marathon. Which one?

  5. kim permalink
    February 24, 2010 7:24 pm

    i find i refer to the things i have learned running-whether it be training for a race or actually racing-MANY times…sometime daily. Those things make me courageous and strong enough to take the next step in many difficult situations. I often wonder who i would be WITHOUT all the running/things i have learned as a result of running. It has, by far, been the most monumental thing in my life to expand myself , my abilities, my dreams, my capabilities, and my willingness to just try….

    • bowenshea permalink*
      February 25, 2010 10:52 pm

      Thank you for your heartfelt comment, Kim. It’s so true, so true. I feel every day of running is an affirmation of who I am and who I want to be.

  6. February 24, 2010 8:30 pm

    Its like we’re stuck in this weird time warp where we choose who and what ages. I look in the mirror and rarely see me of now, but still the me of pre-baby (wasn’t that great?!) or the me before I found running again (What the heck happened to you?). My babies (now 7 and 9) make me go back and forth on my self preception. Well that and the husbands grey hair. Am I old enough to be married to a man with so much grey hair? LOL

    • bowenshea permalink*
      February 25, 2010 10:54 pm

      LOVE the “married to man with grey hair” comment, Tina!

      I was just watching video of our oldest daughter when she was a baby. When I could finally take my eyes off of HER, I noticed how much smoother my complexion looked. Sigh.

  7. February 25, 2010 1:42 pm

    Can’t wait to read it. I was a big fan of your RW blog, so I’m sure I’ll love it. Best of luck with the launch!

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