Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The Wall

See that look on my face. That is pretty much how I have felt the last 2 years.

Tired. Sad. Exhausted. Pissed off. Defeated.

The last 2 years have thrown more at me than I ever could have anticipated. There were times I thought for sure I wasn't going to make it through. There were times when I threw my hands up in the air and said "I quit! I can't do this!"

It seemed like there were walls being plopped down in front of me left, right and center.

I definitely felt like I look in the above photo when they told us Ade might not be ours to adopt.

I most certainly felt like this when they asked us to update our entire homestudy/dossier in month in order to get our documents to Ethiopia again in time for court so Ade could legally be ours.

I absolutely felt like this when we were told Ade might have T.B. which could have meant he wouldn't be coming home for months on end.

And I 110% felt like this after we arrived home with Ade and I plunged head first into my PADS.

Whatever wall kept being thrown at us we climbed it.

At times it was easy.

Sometimes it was hard.

A couple of times the wall loomed over us so tall it seemed to go upwards forever.

Every time we conquered the wall though.

The biggest wall of all was the wall that separated me from the person I am.

Somewhere in the last two years I became very negative. Self-defeating. Unmotivated.

I lost who I was.

No matter how hard I tried to find myself all I found was a deep, dark, pool of self-pity and loathing. Like somehow, I wasn't good enough because I couldn't control what was happening to us.

I wanted to make plans for myself and couldn't. A voice inside me kept telling me I wasn't smart enough, pretty enough, strong enough etc. "You will fail if you try", this wee voice convinced me, "so why put out the effort".

I'm not sure how I managed to stay married (the best husband in the world who supported me with every ounce of his being) or still have family and friends talking to me (the best support network a girl could ask for).

This has been my biggest wall.

If you knew me before we got into the ups and downs of our last 2 years you know I was outgoing, fun, motivated, easy-to-laugh and goal-oriented. (Don't mind me while I pump myself up.)

I wanted this gal back.

In the last month I have been trying to find her again.

She was there just waiting to come out.

My mother-in-law may have known she was in there...but she probably didn't know I needed her assistance to find her. She asked me sometime in July if I was going to compete in our gym's Crossfit Challenge. She thought I should. They would babysit Ade for us so we could do it together. Maybe she knew we needed to do this together.

It was the little push I needed to convince me to do it. If she thought I was capable, then I guess I should try.

As you know, I signed up.

A couple of times I considered backing out. That niggling voice tried to tell me I couldn't do it. It would whisper in my ear, "You will fail and look like a fool in front of all of those people. People you know and some you don't."

I ignored it. I tuned it out.

Instead I told myself "I can do this! You didn't get through the last 2 years of hell because you are weak!"

So I prepared in what little time I had. Instead of entering the gym in fear of the workouts (as I often did - really a fear of life in general was what I had adopted) I told myself I could do it.

I conquered a movement I had been working on for a year and half in about 3 weeks. Before walking into the competition I couldn't do a "Clean" of more than 85#. Mentally every time I tried, I blocked myself.

The Monday before the competition I hit #100 with a Jerk to get it over head too!

I was ready.

My goal was to finish the day with a smile on my face.

There were 5 workouts to complete last Saturday.

1. Find your max clean and jerk - I set a personal record of 102# on a movement I couldn't do a week before above 85#

2. Row 90 seconds for distance. - 374m

3. Push a prowler 150m for time - 59.69 seconds

4. 1 min on 1 min off the following movements
-55# Power Snatch - 16
-Ring pullups - 5
-125# fat bar deadlifts - 11
-Paralette jump throughs - 11
-Wall climbs - 7

By the time I got to the 4th workout I was tired with a capital "T" but felt like I had a bit more in me. I gave it my best shot.

I got to the wall at the end of the work out and I thought to myself "This seems fitting! After all I have been through so far today, here I am standing facing THE WALL".

The wall in front of me represented so much more than just a part of the workout.

It was the last daunting task of a particularly ugly workout and also what stood between ME and putting everything that has happened in the last two years finally to rest.

I knew I had to get over the wall as many times as I possibly could.

Every single time I hoisted myself over that damn wall, a bit of the person I am was freed. With every heave of arms, swing over with my leg and thud as I landed on the other side of the wall, more of myself was breaking away from the pain and anguish of the last 2 years.

When the buzzer sounded at the end of the minute, I had jumped the wall 7 times.


7 has always been my favourite number. I don't know why but it has.

I had done it! I had broken free of the last wall. I had jumped over enough times to send the voice of self-doubt running for its life.

My body said "Enough! You've done enough. It's time to sit, relax, enjoy and indulge in all that you have accomplished."

I didn't have it in me to do the 5th workout.

A couple of people said, "Really! You won't have a very good placing".

And I'm perfectly o.k. with that.

Because at the end of the day I have something better than a placing.

I have ME back!

And I have THE WALL to thank for it!


Dancin' Momma said...

Yeah for amazing in-laws! I wish we were all so blessed to be supported in our journeys over that damn wall. Way to go girl!

Julie said...

You are amazing.

BCMommy said...

You are amazing! I am so proud of you, friend!!!!!!!

Awesome work!


Anonymous said...

ha.. I had a feeling the larger version of that photo would be you in the midst of kicking butt!! Way to get over that wall, lady.

Melissa said...

I have no idea what a max clean and jerk is, it sounds uncomfortable.

But, you are awesome. I knew that the past two years have been hard for you, but I didn't realize how much they had changed you. So glad that you've found a way to climb out of the muck!

Maple Walnut Mama said...

Wow. You are so inspiring Rana.

Angela Sandau said...

Congrats on such an amazing accomplishment. That wall can be very daunting and you should be proud of yourself for what you have done. Way to go Rana!

Sharla said...

That is totally amazing and inspiring. I also love how the literal wall is representative of the figurative wall of the past few years for you.

Jess said...

smile :) you're awesome! And we should hang out again soon!

Brendan and Mary said...

You are strong, beautiful, worthy, and very capable! I am grateful to have you as a friend :)

CinnamonOpus said...

Great job!

hotflawedmama said...

You rock this world. Love everything about this. Congrats.

The Turgeon Expansion said...

Good for you Rana, I am in awe!!

emily said...

This is AWESOME Rana. I'm so glad your inlaws supported you in this. And seriously, this is such an inspiration to me! Way to go chicky!

cheryl said...

You made me alittle teary Rana! I knew you had it in you, and i am so SO happy you are finding it slowly but surely as well! That wall is a milestone, and i am looking forward to exploring the other side with you time and time again!

ps. Just not this Sunday! haha

Love you!

The Gaboury's said...

Such a fantastic post, very well written, and so many of us can relate 100% of what you are saying. I know I sure can.

Karen and Blaise Curry said...

Beautiful post you go girl ! I came across the amazing song last week and I think it really helps refocus folks on the adoption or post adoption treadmill that it is OK to take care of ourselves.

I don't know if the link works but is definitely not a song to keep to myself.


darci said...

WHOOHOO! that is amazing! way to go. :)

Hi from Ruth! said...

wow - I don't know what half of those things are that you talked about, but they sound hard and impressive...way to go!!


Carolyn said...

Excellent post- you are such a great writer! So glad that you are feeling back to your self again. Another congrats for butt kicking this week- you did awesome!


Rowan Family Tree said...

Way to go, kiddo. Sounds like you are back in the saddle again :-)

Giv'em 'ell.

Claudia said...

Woah, FIERCE! I love it!

Kimmy G said...

Way to go, Rana! This was absolutely awesome and inspirational to read. Way to take life head on and come out on the other side with an impressive song to sing.