Given, my boys are handsome and I love them. But “she” is my first baby, the baby that shaped me as a mother and my entire adult life, really. She’s beautiful, truly -- and for anything that anyone may say about me, (I’m too cold, un-emotional, snippy, quick to judge, overly critical, and on and on you can go)…. I like to think that I what I lack, she makes up for in spades and perhaps redeems me (a little).
Last night, while doing intervals, Tom Petty’s Gainesville concert dvd kept me company. In it, he jokes on how he’s enjoyed being back in Gainesville, his home town so that he could walk around all week hearing the “incorrect story of his life”. I couldn’t help but thinking then, how true that is. How many of us frequently hear the incorrect versions of our own lives? I know that I do, often. I often hear that I’m selfish, spend too much time pursuing my “interests”, the gym, the bike, the fiance’, the blogs even. Maybe these things make me a selfish person, or, maybe like a local bike racer told me recently, being selfish will make me a great bike racer.
I, on the other hand, like to view this in a positive light, something I’m teaching my children, something I’m teaching my daughter, specifically. She can be beautiful, can be a girl, can be a mother, can maintain a healthy physique and an active lifestyle, can fully pursue anything she wants to pursue. Will she, too, be labeled as “selfish?” Perhaps. This is something, that at this age, she doesn’t understand. She’s torn between what southern tradition dictates and her dreams that go far beyond the south. I hope that in even some minute way, I can show her through my own varied interests, my own multi-tasking, my own shuffling of work, play and training– to never settle, never fit anyone else’s mold, never deny her passions and to give anyone that wants to “label” her, the proverbial finger.