I recently realized that my sense of mortality is holding me back. Not so much the dying part, but the aging part. I just turned 34 and leading up to this birthday, for the last few years in fact, I’ve been feeling like my life was almost over. I think a lot of it has to do with my weight and constantly feeling sluggish and unable to do the things I actually want to do but I’m also acutely aware of my mom at 40.

Leading up to my mom’s 40th birthday she became temporarily disabled and temporarily bed ridden because of her back. My memory is foggy because I was young when it happened, but I do know that from there things got worse, more permanent. I don’t remember how long she was laid-up, might have been three days, might have been a week, might have been longer. But I do know that she was in a lot of pain and that pain led to more pain which eventually ended up requiring spinal surgery and two knee replacements– she has been on permanent disability ever since.

These days she gets around just fine, but she can’t work long hours and still has certain limitations. I have never seen my mom run or jump. I have never seen her hike or kayak or canoe or swim in a lake, river or ocean– I don’t know if I’ve ever seen my mom sit on her knees. This has completely warped my sense of age and ability.

My mom has been overweight for as long as I’ve known her, she’s been lighter than she is now and she’s also been a lot heavier too. This is my normal. This is what I’ve always expected for myself. I thought being thin and fit and active was for others and I have always been jealous of that.

But not anymore. I WILL learn to live my life the way I want to live it. YES I WILL!

I have one more doctor appointment left in order to meet all of the prerequisites for gastric by-pass surgery and I can’t wait! As long as the insurance company authorizes it: This will be my last summer wishing I could white water raft, my last fall wanting to go to Carrowinds, my last winter not going snow-tubing. Next year is MINE! I WILL do all of the things that I have been putting off for years because this is the year that I will start living!

I accomplished quite a bit these first 34 years, I can’t wait to see what the next 34 bring!