If I’m being completely honest, moving has been a tough transition for me. While we only moved 30 minutes away from where we were for 8 years, it feels like we could have moved cross country. Everything has changed. The parks we went to. The classes we attended. The friends we hung out with (regularly). The restaurants we frequented. The gym we went to every single day. And this list goes on…
And it’s funny. While I cringe at admitting this, I feel like one of the hardest transitions for us has been the gym situation. It makes me feel a bit ridiculous because I’m not trying to complain or make it sound like my life is terrible (I know it’s not), but my gym routine at the Presidio YMCA was one of the most important parts of my day. Not only did it allow me to get some exercise, but more than anything, it was a break for me.
We don’t have family close by to help at all. Abby isn’t in school yet. We don’t have a nanny. We rarely have babysitters (only for super special date nights). And Travis works long days. The combination of those factors make my days long as well. And sometimes they can be stressful. I’m busy raising two loving, thoughtful, respectful, aware, and completely crazy (in a good way, of course) human beings…plus cooking, cleaning, shopping, growing another human, and doing everything else a stay at home Mom does (if you’re wondering what we do all day). Most days, all I need is a short break to feel recharged. And in San Francisco, my break was that hour at the gym.
Since moving to Oakland, I’ve worked out 7 times now. We’ve almost been here TWO months.
That’s a huge difference from 3-5 times a week.
For a while, I saw it as a nice change of pace. I was feeling extremely nauseous with my pregnancy, we had so much going on with the move, and I’ve never really taken time off of working out, so I embraced it.
Then we got settled into our house…and then I got to a place where I was ready for my “break” again. So we signed up for the YMCA in Oakland. And then another transition began.
And let me tell you, it wasn’t easy. Let me rephrase that…it hasn’t been easy.
The first time I went, I got through 5 minutes of my workout before I was paged back into Child Watch to get my kids because Mac was screaming her head off. The second time, I made it through a whole 10 minutes before I was called back in for the same thing. The third time, I actually made it through an hour without being paged giving me false hope that things had changed for the better. The fourth attempt, I was called in and the fifth time, I was called in yet again.
It was so disheartening. We LOVED our Y in San Francisco. They loved the girls and the girls loved them. We had a few rough days, but it wasn’t every single day.
After a few days of wondering what we were going to do (change gyms, give up all together, get a babysitter, etc), I decided to try and take them again. I got through an hour workout (after leaving baby Mac with alligator tears staring out the window at me). The next day, I made it through another hour (after the same routine yet again). And today, after having a pep talk with Abby (like I do everyday, pleading her to help me take care of Baby Mac while I’m away at the gym), I left a sobbing Mackenzie in Child Watch.
When I turned around to catch one last glimpse of my horrified baby, I saw Abby walking over to the diaper bag. Without hesitation, she opened it and grabbed Mackenzie’s coveted giraffe (her “lovey,” if you will), confidently walked it over to Mac and in that instant, peace was restored again. Abby was proud and Mackenzie was content. The look between them is something I could never fully explain but I can only hope to see again someday.
That moment will forever be burned in my memory.
That moment may have bought me another hour break, but more than anything, it validated every single thing I’m trying to do as a Mom. The love, compassion, and sweetness I saw in that moment made every second of this tough transition completely disappear.
My girls are my world. And while our lives have been turned upside down to some extent, I’m confident that my world is spinning just as it should be.