My sides were cramping, not from the routine but from watching Shiloh’s skinny arms swing furiously with the pale yellow 1lb weights.
“Three, two, ONE!” he shouted as we finished the set on the TV, then he set the weights down and announced, “no weights!” He was now the instructor. Kevin and I couldn’t stop laughing. I ended up only working out one side of my body because I couldn’t keep a straight face and continue, resulting in going to work feeling lopsided.
Last Friday I had blood work done to check my CA-125 and had my regular 3-month check-up with my doctor. I was nervous about my numbers because I know I’m not as fit or healthy as I was last year. My appetite has gone up, and my schedule (self-inflicted), has not allowed me to work out as much as I’d like. When the numbers came back, it turns out I’m the healthiest I’ve ever been – not by the weight scale numbers from my bathroom scale but by the official lab work numbers which prove I’m doing well.
I don’t have time during the day to exercise and there are no gyms which have workout classes after 9PM for all the working parents who want to spend their awake hours with their children. I will always choose to spend time with my child over sweating miserably in a gym – always. So to try to promote a healthy lifestyle, I bought the 21-Fix which Shiloh and I like to do in the basement together. Since he couldn’t lift the 2lb weights comfortably, I ordered him some small yellow ones.
As we got started, Shiloh used the weights and followed along as best he would. I couldn’t help myself but call Kevin down to document the hilarity. With each weight clenched in his 3-year-old hands, Shiloh thrust his arms up and moved his uncoordinated torso and limbs without worrying about being embarrassed or the fear of failing. He was trying his best.
Our best may not look like someone else’s best. We prioritize different things and organize our lives in different shaped sized boxes, so the warehouses of our lives are all unique. We know our limitations – something which I’ve pushed to the edge this semester. Since I’m feeling healthier, I keep pushing myself to the limit to prove I no longer have physical limitations, to prove I’m no longer sick, to prove no one needs to take care of me like they had to when I had cancer.
But I don’t need to prove anything. No one is asking me to prove anything – it’s more me. Sometimes, though I know it doesn’t make any sense, I blame myself for the impact cancer had on my family.
I had to get additional scans because of pain I’ve been having around the scar tissue – hoping it’s not remnants or new growth or ovarian cancer. On Friday, I cried – not because I’m afraid I’ll die from cancer – but because I’m more annoyed at more tests poking their heads back into my life to remind me cancer even happened.
I am constantly reminding myself and others are constantly reminding me to stop pushing myself – just do my best – and maybe today, my best is just living.