While I was in the middle of the New York City marathon – totally impromptu I might add and just a few weeks out from the Ironman World Championships…can we say tired legs?!) – I had an idea.
- What if moms actually were empowered to go after their dreams?
- What if moms gave themselves permission to shed the guilt and chase the stars?
- How many moms could we get to become Abbott World Major 6 Star finishers?
- What kind of community could we build around this?!
You see…I had decided if I was going to do NYC – then I was all in. Read: Cancer Survivor Takes on World Majors Challenge. And of course..this all came about around mile 8. By mile 21 I was expanding this beyond just the majors.
But don’t think it was a fleeting thought.
It’s been brewing for years for me. And it came to light in Kona, Hawaii along the lava fields. Here is part of a blog post I wrote shortly after to my daughters – an open letter, if you will…and the foundation for #momschasingmajors.
There comes a time when we have to say- enough is enough.
A time when we break through to be what we want to be, not what what we think others want us to be.
This bright-as-day revelation came about on the dark backside of the Queen K Highway of the 2018 Ironman World Championships. I had struggled with the idea that I “belonged” at the most prestigious and elite long-distance triathlon course. Add onto that the fact that one of the largest sports networks was following me with cameras, through the bike course where I vomited on my hydration container and into the run where I was found relieving myself…on myself. Being part of a media story was humbling, honoring and downright embarrassing. I found myself throughout the day being embarrassed, shamed and guilty.
My whole world – friends, family and colleagues – were committed to tracking my progress on this world stage.
And here I was mucking it up.
Then about 122 miles into this soul-shattering, mind-altering, humble-ridden race – I found the light. Kinda Ace of Base style, I saw the sign. In the darkness of the Energy Lab on the big Island of Hawaii. I couldn’t see in front of my face. It started pouring. Pouring to where you couldn’t even see the drops but you could feel the flood at your ankles. For all the poor souls trudging through the dark, with families back at the finish line hoping we’d come in soon – it was some very dark moments. For me, it became a very bright moment in the dark. I was met with an opportunity to help another racer make history. I won’t be in history books, but that doesn’t matter. Finally, after 120+ miles I realized that being human means more than the embarrassment and shame I had previously felt. Emotions that were only attached through learned behavior of a media and society that attaches these feelings onto female human beings and just forces them to “accept” the emotions.
I realized, in these dark moments, that I was actually attaching my own shame and embarrassment of what I felt was a “failed race” but that the outside world didn’t actually view me to be.
I was putting so much on me, because society had taught me to do this. It took someone else in an extremely disadvantaged position. Someone with a body riddled by disease in the dark, desolate waste land of the lava fields to shine a light on my own carrying of negative baggage that society has placed on me. Negative baggage that will, ultimately, impact my daughters. That could destroy my daughter’s future.
Enough is enough.
It’s damn time for our daughters to see the strong, capable, fierce and successful beings that they can be.
For so long society has coddled and said “sure women can do anything” but hasn’t really given the women the path to do it. And when these women take and make their own path – are often riddled with guilt over self-care, shame over body image, or hatred by the viewer’s fear because they don’t understand what they are seeing.
In the words of Shalene Flannigan, “F*** yea”– enough is enough.
It’s time that we rise up and shed the cloak of guilt. A woman’s efforts channeled to procure self-care shouldn’t be coated with guilt like the glaze on a donut. A woman’s desires to want more for herself as an individual shouldn’t be wrought with shame by those around her.
What are we teaching the future female leaders of this world if we shy away and let these negative emotions rule? Shame. Guilt. Fear.
Enough is enough.
We don’t need permission to be more. To do more. To want more. To be successful. Our daughters need to know that the path before them is open. Years of women have blazed a path that allows them, now more than ever, to grab whatever the hell they dream of.
As I crossed the finish line – my oldest daughter flung herself at me. She didn’t see the long hours of self-doubt and shame – she saw the manifestation of years of training, hours of preparation and one strong heart. She wrapped her arms around me, as her heart light radiated out of her body and into mine. Some may say it was the spotlights of the finish line, no it was the spotlight of showing my girl that she could be and do whatever she wants to be- for herself and others. That self-care isn’t selfish. That desiring more isn’t disregarding what you have. That society shouldn’t attach their own negative feelings on to what they don’t understand. That internet strangers mean nothing. That family members don’t support you don’t get a say.
Enough is enough.
Cause you, my daughter, are more than enough as you are.
But never let that stop you from doing more.
But as you can see..it’s not just about them. It is also about us.
As moms we are often over-looked, piled upon , guilt-ridden, shame-filled..basically a bunch of hurdles stand between women and the choice to do something for JUST THEM.
How can we change this conversation?
How can we help other moms to have something just for them?
How can I make a small change in just one other person’s life.
So what are we?
A group of moms who want support. who need a shoulder to cry on or an ear to listen. a movement for moms to know it is MORE than okay to be “selfish” and have your own goals.
Sure- the main goal started as a group of moms chasing the Major Marathons- but the inclusion is more than that.
As part of #momschasingmajors:
⭐️ we don’t judge on qualification versus lottery
🌟 we don’t care if you finish the majors in one year or longer
✨ we simply just want to chase, travel and enjoy.
Whatever YOUR major goals are – join us.
How do I get involved?
Be one of us. Use the hashtag.
Find others. No cost.
Just investment of supportive heart.🖤
My Personal Athletic Goals
With New York City marathon 2018 star grabbed and put in my bag – I am now looking to 2019.
Chicago Marathon Lottery is up in the air. If that doesn’t come through I’m eyeballing Tokyo, London and Berlin with MarathonTours.
If you haven’t heard of Marathon Tours – they are a tour company that provide companionship, travel itinerary, lodging and race access – convenient, accessible and safe! No, they aren’t paying me to say this. I’m a new member and plan to be using them this year as chasing qualifications isn’t always feasible monetarily or time wise with having five-kids and multiple businesses.
Of course, there’s always Boston – so time to figure out which race will be where I run after that BQ shooting unicorn!
I’m not in this to be the fastest, or best. I’m simply here to chase the star, grab it and achieve a personal goal!