Category Archives: swim

There’s no such thing as Superman

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Today started out seemingly normal.  Dropped kiddo off at school for early basketball practice and i drove off to work.  Then i get a call a little later from my son who is in the nurses office and is having trouble breathing.  He tripped and fell and another child accidentally fell on him.  So i rushed out of work early to go get him. I call the pediatrician because we had a “Well visit” scheduled for that afternoon and wanted to see if she could see him earlier.  The nice lady on the phone tells me that she can get us in but that the well visit becomes a sick visit and i have to pay $40 to be seen.  I say fine and as I’m waiting at the red light i check my bank account this is what i see

A slight panic comes over me and payday is a couple of days away and i figure i can ask his pediatrician if she can combine his well visit with this so that i won’t have to pay, we’ve been visiting her for 12 years maybe she will understand.  As I’m waiting at the light, i guess life feels like i haven’t been kicked enough i hear a ding come from the dashboard…i have less than a 1/4 tank of gas and 24 miles to drive to see his doctor.  The light turns green and i had towards the school i hear a second “ding” and look at the tire light come on.  I let out a frustrated scream and hit my fists on the steering wheel.

I promise you i couldn’t make this up if i tried.  I pick up my son and we head towards the pediatricians office. I plead my case to the accounting office and they say no, that it is now a sick visit and they will just bill me. I hold back tears as I’m explaining to them that they will have to do a payment arrangement for me and i walk back to the waiting room defeated. I’ve texted a few friends and family members for emotional support and I’ll tell you that i am surrounded by pure love.  There is so much solidarity in the crap storm I’m surrounded by.

After examination by the doctor she decides that he probably would be better served at the Emergency Room and that he might need X Rays and a scope.  I hold back the tears and i hope this doesn’t sound callous but start to count the bill in my head.  We had out to the ER.I look at my gas tank and remember i have $6 in my purse that can buy us a couple of gallons to get home if needed.

Once I’m here we go through all the same things, the questions etc and they assign us to a room.  The nurses poke around and tell us a doctor will see us soon.  Then the humbling begins.  The financial people wheel their little carts around and take your info.  All in front of your children.  The person sees that i still owe money from our last ER visit that I’m trying to pay down and says to me that my co-pay is $250. I tell him that i don’t have it right now and he then asks if i can pay anything towards it.  I forgot for a second my son was there and i say to him “my bank account is negative $71, I’m so sorry i can’t” I’m holding back tears from embarrassment and shame.  I realize I’m holding a school issued iPad and wonder if he thinks I’m one of those people who spend money on expensive things and can’t pay my bills. I want to go and explain that my purse is a gift and that my cell phone is from work and that i really can’t afford it but i don’t.  And the silent judgement whether real or imagined hurts my heart.  When he leaves my son says to me “I’m sorry, i shouldn’t have said anything because now you’re worried about money” i feel an inch tall.  I feel like I’ve let him down, like the one thing I’m supposed to be doing in failing at miserably. I calm him down and give him a blanket and explain that it’s not his fault and that we’ll be OK.

But here’s the thing, i don’t know what OK is.  I know that when i leave here with him and he’s healthy that is all that will matter.  I will breath a quick sigh of relief until i remember that i just added another medical bill to my bills.  That this will sit on top of my $10,000 loan in paying back for my surgery that insurance wouldn’t cover.  That i live paycheck to paycheck and like many of us out there get creative will bills and dinner and food and just when you think you have a quick breath life comes in with a sucker punch.

I was telling my friend that i didn’t know how i could call this living.  That it feels like all we do is fight to breathe and to climb out of this hole that just keeps getting bigger and bigger. That I’ve put steps into action so my son hopefully will never have to do this.  That my plan is when it is time to go to college i will sell my house and give him any proceeds so that he won’t start life out with debt.  I only have one child so once he leaves there’s no need for a big house.  I just don’t want him to feel what I’m feeling right now.  Which is hopeless and helpless and drowning in life.

I find myself praying less and less over the years because I’ve come to the realization that life is just what it is. Science is science.  Things happen.  Good things happen to bad people and bad things sometimes happen to good people.  Life isn’t the movies, there’s no superman waiting in the wings, no long lost rich relative who’s bazillion dollars so i can help me and my entire family out. There’s no winning lottery ticket with a lucky number there’s no lost painting in the attic worth thousands.  So we do what we can.  We make the best of what we have we celebrate the little things in life and find gratitude in these  breaths even though the relief is brief.

Right now they are doing X-rays and an EKG on my guy.  He’s being such a trooper and I’m trying not to be the worst mom in the world by worrying about money.

I hope he’s OK.  He needs to be OK because he’s my baby.  I will find a way, there will always be a way and i share this, not for the woe is me aspect, shit we all have problems, mine are no bigger than yours, but i share it so maybe someone out there won’t feel alone, because even though i am surrounded by love this is the loneliest place to be.

UPDATE: kid has bruised ribs and injury to his chest wall.  He’s to stay home today and tomorrow.  So i tell my boss and guess what? I still need to come in tomorrow because we are short staffed and sold out….so that means I’m Skype parenting from work for a few hours.  This is the very real and un-glamorous life of single parents – having to choose to work or care for a sick kid.  Somethings gotta give.

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Adventure Completed- I am a Triathlete!

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TRIATHLETE

Yes this totally happened! Yes it was hard af! Yes I should have trained better and not been hellbent on bingeing TV shows. Yes I almost drowned because Mr. Iron-man Junior with the rock hard abs and the cute speedo shorts was zooming past me at lightning speed. Yes- my inner spirit animal- Mr. Samuel L Jackson came out to cuss during my bike portion. Yes i did this with a hangover from the epic NYE partying over the weekend. Yes this was nuts and i couldn’t have done it without my squad who fed me jelly beans and sips of coffee in between transitions because technically i was an extra on the walking dead.

SQUAD

Squad Goals: Ahissa (far left- my sista from anotha mista) and my adrenaline junkie inspiring me to do crazy shit friend Tasha (in the red, center)

But seriously i have such a newfound respect for these amazing people that do the Triathlons. My heart is beaming with pride for my friend Tasha who has turned this life into a passion. I feel bad that I didn’t do as great as i could have out of pure laziness. But there is always a sprint or next year to go for. 😉

TRI

I don’t know my results. That’s not really what i was going for. This was more of a challenge for me and a slight adrenaline rush. I know my truth lol but I do feel really cool accomplishing something new.

Swim                                    Bike                                        Run

 

So  I leave you with this for the new year and I hope you all take it as a personal challenge to “Go out and be AWESOME! ♥”

DO IT

 

Im Tri-ing!

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Got my first piece of #tri “equipment” today my first ever swim cap.  Carefully picked out as to give me street cred.  Hence the graffiti. Plus it’s cool.  Now waiting on my bathing suit.  First indoor triathlon in 11 weeks Adventure 4 of 36!

go out & be awesome ♡ Denise

Adventure #4- Indoor Triathlon

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indoorTriHeroI’ve decided on Adventure #4 – An indoor triathlon hosted by Lifetime Fitness….in January! Now this is bananas! However I am up for the challenge. I haven’t signed up with a buddy to do it but if any of you want to go on this adventure with me, let me know!

In order to let help you understand where this crazy idea came from I have to introduce to you to a great friend of mine, one of my bestest friends, Tasha who I had the pleasure of befriending in 2013. Both single moms and a bit of a wild card we fit together just right. I met her when I was having a rough time near the end of my relationship with my sons father. She lived in my neighborhood and our sons all went to school together. She was always positive through my walk through hell and when I made it out to the other side she is still here and I love her for that. She is a true adventurer and a risk taker and a dreamer but most importantly Tasha is a DO-ER. Once she sets her mind on something she finishes it and then somehow manages to have a thirst for the next big thing. I love that! When I met her she was just getting into OCR racing (Obstacle course racing) she had completed a Spartan, a Battlefrog, Bad Ass Dash,  Down and Dirty and a few more. She kept talking about it in such a way that I just had to try it for myself. It was with her enthusiasm and motivation and help that I competed in my first Spartan race. She knew I was slow, overweight and sluggish but she stuck by me through the whole race and at the end I got to call myself a Spartan. For any of you who have done one you know it’s no easy feat so I will own that title as long as I live. She also got me to do my second Spartan race in April and now here I am signing up for an indoor triathlon all because my dear friend caught the tri-bug a little over a year ago. She had never competed in one and I’ve seen her go from occasional racer to full on athlete mode in the past year. Watching her get such great joy from the sport, get excited with passion and hear her stories of meeting great athletes and achieving her goals makes it so appealing. I’ve seen her go from a not so very strong swimmer to one who is swimming in open water, from a 5k runner to a 10k runner and now a bicyclist. All to be admired.

She has been trying to get me to Tri for a while but I let my insecurities and bum heels get in the way. Always saying “I need to do that” but never really going for it. Well that’s about to change y’all. Because she told me about the indoor tri and I went ahead and signed up for it. Yep committed to it. On January 3rd I will become a triathlete. I will start my new year off crossing off a mini goal and I hope that this will help me heal my body and get myself motivated to get healthier and stronger physically. Now the next 11 weeks may be peppered with obscene words, a little self-doubt and a mad post or two about how id rather be fat and happy eating pizza than skinny and eating clean. Just be forewarned and when I say these things out of Hanger, exhaustion and self-doubt – just say the following back to me:

“You are a triathlete”

Anyone interested in looking if one is offered in your city or would like to join me in Alpharetta on January 3rd you can check out the following link. Wish me luck!

http://www.indoortri.com/

**A side note of encouragement. For those who are wanting to try something new just go for it. I am far from the athletic build. I’m soft in ALL places, I have a butt that high fives me in the back, really busty, have bad feet and I’m slower than molasses. If I can do it you can too! And in my experience I’ve seen more people cheer on the slower, overweight girl trying her best over the girl who’s always winning. People love and underdog. They love to chant for the “Rudy’s” of the world. So join me on my journey we’ll be AWESOME together! ❤

spartan tash and me

Me and Tasha getting ready to compete in my first Spartan    Goonies Never Say Die!

tash tri

Tasha showing off her well deserved and earned medal after one of her races