If this is not the epitome of the new blog tagline…

Then I don’t know what is.

You have to watch this TEDx talk with Lizzie Velasquez. Seriously.

No matter how bad we think we have it, we can always find the positives.

She is so amazing, inspirational and funny. One of my favorite lines: “I’ve had a really difficult life, but that’s OK!” Challenges are ok. Overcoming them to find the positives makes us stronger, better, more grounded in ourselves and who WE are.

Take a look…it is so worth the 13 minutes.

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In which I make a complete ass of myself. And learn some stuff. (As usual.)

It is rather fitting that this is the first post on the new blog, since I am writing about an utterly humbling experience I had the other day. A serious “DUH” incident in which I made a complete ass out of myself and came off looking like a total moron.

So fitting that I should be terrified of coming forward and saying “I am Steph Nash, not some persona I have created, just me, and that’s enough!” and the first story I tell as Just Steph Nash is one that ensures I am not too big for my britches.

Life is good that way. It keeps me in check. (Said without any sarcasm, for realz.)

(‘God, Steph, stop rambling and spill the damned story!’ you say.)

OK, OK.

So I had signed my son up for a sports conditioning class at the Y and it started at 5pm. That is a challenge for me for sure, and I was going to meet that challenge through a carefully coordinated plan of attack. BOOM. Here it is:

  • Leave work promptly at 4:30 (early, but doable).
  • Race to pick up the kids at after-school care (they were under strict instructions: at 4:30, Coop was to go change into his workout stuff, and Emma–my slowpoke–was to come RUNNING as soon as they were called down for dismissal)
  • Try to get in and out of the school in 5 minutes or less (a major accomplishment)
  • Jet to the YMCA and hustle him in, likely at the stroke of 5:02.

At 4:31, I was KILLING IT, you guys. I had packed all my crap, closed down my computer, flew down the stairs and was in the parking lot approaching my car. My beautiful, new 4 month old car that has made driving so much more delightful than I remembered it could be. I remember thinking to myself, “You GOT this, Super Mom! NAILED it!”

(insert lolz from those of you who know that pride goeth before the dumbassery)

I hopped in the seat, turned the ignition and turned to start backing. Woops, guess I turned the ignition too fast because I didn’t QUITE get the car started. Silly me.

So I turned the ignition again, carefully and with meaning this time, and nothing happened.

Hmmmmm, strange.

Let me try that again!

Nothin.

4:33.

DO NOT PANIC.

I stopped, I looked around my car. Nothing unusual. I hadn’t left the headlights on (my fancy new grown-up car has lights that shut off AUTOMATICALLY…wow, technology!) or the interior light, so it didn’t seem like it could be a drained battery.

I had a thought that maybe the keyless ignition wasn’t working, so I dutifully pulled out the key and tried to turn the ignition with that.

You guessed it, nothing.

I took a breath and came to terms with the fact that Cooper was not getting to the Y today. Shit! I exhaled and let it go.

I tried to call the husband, who always has a way of talking me down from the ledge and helping me see if I am missing something. Voicemail.

OK, I’m a big girl. I can call AAA without consulting him and then go in and sit in my office until they get here.

AAA told me they might not be able to get someone out there til 7:40. SERIOUSLY? I’d given up on the Y, but I had to pick the kids up by 6pm at the latest, so that was just too long to wait.

I felt the panic rise up. Drew was in Hartford, so he couldn’t get to the kids on time.

I thought it was the battery, and I noticed my boss was parked right next to me. I texted her to see if she could give me a jump. Five minutes later, she was in the parking lot with me, along with the building security guard who had jumper cables. We hooked them up. She started her car. I tried to start mine.

And nothing happened.

My boss was freezing out in the parking lot with me in her light coat. The security guard was looking on with mild interest as we tried to figure out why my new car wouldn’t start.

We tried several times. Nothing.

And now, I am seriously panicking.

Well, just me panicking, really. Everyone else was just freezing their asses off while I tried to figure out what to do.

Well, just me panicking, really. Everyone else was just freezing their asses off while I tried to figure out what to do.

How will I get my kids? Who can I call that could pick them up? Jesusgod, am I really going to have to wait here til 7:40? What about my dinner in the crockpot: is it going to burn? Can food in crockpots actually burn? Why isn’t my NEW EFFING CAR STARTING?!?! The dog has to go out–I don’t want to clean up pee and poop when I get home. Will Drew skip his workout to come get me instead? WHO WILL GET THE KIDS? The school is going to judge me for being THAT MOM AGAIN!!!! OMGOMGOMGOMGOMG!!!!!

I looked up from my panic and saw my boss on her phone. It took me a second to realize that she was arranging to catch a ride home with a co-worker. She told me I could use her car to go pick up the kids and go home and then she’d have her husband drive her into work in the morning. My boss was going to lend me her car. I was so grateful for her kindness in the moment, and in general to have such a great boss.

So, resolved to all the inconveniences of having a broken car (including what I was sure would be a hefty mechanic’s bill) I shut the hood down and grabbed my purse. I closed the car door and the car beeped at me.

What the hell?

I opened the door and didn’t see anything strange. The trunk, all the doors, and the hood were all shut. I closed the door. The car beeped again.

My boss looked at me, probably with the same confused look I had on my own face.

“Is it in gear maybe?” she asked.

The car was in reverse.

THE CAR WAS IN REVERSE.

THE CAR.

WAS IN.

REVERSE.

THE WHOLE EFFING TIME.

I put it in park.

It started right up.

And I died of shame.

shame-600x320I mean, we laughed in the moment but I really wanted to die.

She had just frozen herself for like 30 minutes helping me, offered me her car and inconvenienced herself, all because I was an utter moron.

And I went and got the kids who dutifully hurried out, Cooper fully dressed and ready to be sports-conditioned in his lacrosse shorts and sweat wicking shirt.

When I told him what happened, he just hugged me and said, “It’s ok, Mom. I’m sorry you had a bad afternoon.”

And my heart melted and I loved my life and my kids and my husband (who had reassured me on the phone while I drove from the office to pick up the kids that it was an honest mistake anyone could have made) more than anything.

Because even at my most idiotic and hare-brained, I am loved. I am enough, even when I screw everything up because I am in such a rush to get everything done IN JUST THE PERFECT WAY THAT I HAVE PLANNED.

Lesson learned. Again.

 

What the hell am I doing in 2014? Or, like in general?

I’m not even going to go into the usual blah-blah-blah about long overdue posts. I’m just going to get right down to it.

I haven’t written in a long time because I’m not really sure what I want to say. Like, not what I want to say in this particular post but more in general. What I want to say as a blogger. As a person. As a seeker of joy, love and badassery in all aspects of life.

In the last year or so I had someone ask me a couple of times what I planned to do with this blog.

Person: The blog is great! I’m a huge fan! What are you going to do with the blog, Steph?

Me: Uhhhhh….

Well, I’m damned if I know.

Because as much as I am a writer at heart and know I have a story to tell (perhaps many stories) I’m just not sure where to go from here. I can tell you for sure that I don’t see myself as “The Fit Fat Girl” anymore. It was a persona for awhile and it worked, but the truth is I’ve spent some time over the last couple of months wondering what else this blog could be if not the journey from fat girl to fit badass.

I mean, I’d have to change the whole theme, right? Sure, I could go on occasionally posting about my workouts, my challenges, my injury and how I’m working to overcome it despite obstacles. But I’ve written that shit to death already, and frankly it doesn’t inspire me anymore. And if it’s not inspiring to me, there’s no way in hell it’s going to inspire you.

And is my goal even to be an Inspiration to the People? Is it my goal to be A Thought Leader on Fat-Related Stuff?

Yeah, no. So that’s kind of over.

What, then, do I want to do with this blog?

Well, I’d like to make people laugh sometimes.

I’d like to talk about my parenting challenges sometimes.

I’d like to throw out my thoughts, good and bad, about happiness and friendships and marriage and body image and how big the universe is sometimes. And how small I feel sometimes, even though I take up a decent amount of space.

I’d like to talk about laundry and dishes, wins and losses, holidays and vacations and all the regular days in between. I’d love to write about hopes and dreams that are bigger than life sometimes.

I’d like to ponder the reasons that some weeks, I am super-humanly motivated to keep my house spic and span with seemingly no effort, but other weeks I just want to sit in the reclining chair under my special blankie (yes, I have one) and read books on my Kindle because the day-to-day responsibilities of being a mom and a wife and a Marketing Communications Manager and the Person Who Keeps the Trains Running In My Family seem so monumental that I have to escape to Panem or Hogwarts or wherever else a book would take me.

Sometimes I’d like to tell you why I love YA lit and airports so much.

Other times I’d like to write about real issues about which I am passionate, like the representation of women in the media. And homelessness. And the inability of us as a species (me included!) to just have some freakin’ tolerance and compassion for other human beings, regardless of their gender, race, political party, religious (or non-religious) beliefs, sexual orientation, stance on global warming or guns or Duck Dynasty or abortion or What’s-Your-Excuse-Fit-Mom-Maria-Kang or WHATEVER else the conflict du jour might be.

Someday I’d like to tell you the story of my special blankie, and the person who bought it for me when I was 16. And how mad I am at her sometimes, and how much I miss her since she died almost 20 years ago.

I’d like to tell you my whole story–not all at once, but in bits and slivers and sound bites along the way, a mosaic of experiences and thoughts and opinions that, put together, create the largely-imperfect-but-still-kinda-cool picture that is me.

So why haven’t I done this yet? (Maybe you asked, maybe you didn’t. I’ll answer anyway.)

Fear, of course.

Fear that the new direction of the blog won’t be as good, or as well-received as the old direction was for the most part.

Fear that when I write about my strong opinions on real issues, people will disagree with me and I’ll look stupid.

Fear that when I let go of The Persona of the Fit Fat Girl, there will just be me. Just Steph. And maybe you will not find that as interesting or funny or cool or WHATEVER as the Person Who Was the Fit Fat Girl.

What if Just Steph is not enough?

This is, like, the burning question of my life.

(I just stopped writing for like 10 minutes and debated the inclusion of the entire last 7 paragraphs. Whatever. Keeping ’em.)

So, having said all this, what now? At this point I think I have no choice but to move it forward with this new direction, no matter how scary it is.

Shedding the Fit Fat Girl armor is some next level shit for me, people.
I’m doing it. I hope you’ll stick around to see how it goes.