I was on the fence about publishing my previous post. I am not ashamed to talk about my anxiety in person – I will talk your ear off about how the constant loop of self-deprecation is absolutely exhausting. But there is something so final about putting it in writing. I mean – the internet is forever, right? The response I received was overwhelming. The emails, comments, messages, and the discussion that took place over on the Facebook page were amazing and comforting to know that I am not alone in these thoughts. Thank you.
Verbalizing my thoughts and putting them into words forever etched in binary code released some of the pressure weighing down on my chest. I went to bed Friday night determined to identify all that is good in my life and have a positive weekend. Both kids had 8:00am soccer games on Saturday and Clay was home all weekend so we were able to divide and conquer. I took the little guy to his game and thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to be outside on the crisp fall morning.
After meeting back at home, we had the kids quickly change and then we headed to a fun run sponsored by a handful of local elementary schools. We spent the last couple of weekends participating in races ourselves – I competed in an adventure race and Clay ran the Army Ten-Miler the following Sunday. But this past Saturday – it was our kids’ turn! They competed against other students in their grade and despite being tired from their soccer games, they both ran the entire course without stopping.
The little guy has been expressing an interest in running and we are trying to encourage him to explore individual sports in addition to team sports. As parents, we experienced great joy in watching our children accomplish their goals during their soccer games and the race. Over the years, we have made a lot of sacrifices. Some big. And some small – like not being able to spend a lazy Saturday morning in bed. But despite needing a little extra caffeine, we commented on how rewarding and fun we found Saturday morning to be.
We chilled at home for a bit before heading to Maryland. We met friends stationed at Fort Meade for an early dinner at The Point Crab House. We sat outside in 60-degree weather with drinks and ordered dozens of crabs.
Clay and I also split a bowl of soup. When we couldn’t decide between Mom-Moms Maryland Crab Soup and Cream of Crab, our waitress suggested mixing the two. Having never done that before, we jumped at the chance to try something new. It was delicious! Combining the soups really helped cut down on the richness of the cream of crab and it was a great way to get some of the vegetable flavor from the Maryland crab soup. I highly recommend you trying it for yourself.
Confession – I don’t really care for lobster. When given the choice between Maine Lobster or Maryland Blue Crab smothered with Old Bay Seasoning, I will choose the crab all day every day. When in Maine a few years ago, Clay couldn’t believe that my reaction to the freshest lobster we’ve ever had was just eh. Now, I am a purist when it comes to eating crab – I prefer doing the work myself and I eat it straight from the shell (no butter or vinegar for me). The bright hefeweizen I had was the perfect counterpoint to the ocean flavor.
I focused on the sights, smells, and tastes that being so close to the water afforded us. The sun started to set when we left and it was dark by the time we got back to Northern Virginia. We sang along to silly songs (The Cat Came Back Again and Lunch Lady Land were some of our favorites) and brainstormed Halloween costume ideas on the drive home.
Sunday morning was spent at church. While the kids were in Sunday school, Clay and I participated in a discussion about the current state of faith in America. It is very important to us to belong to a socially progressive church were all are truly welcome and we are incredibly thankful to have found one that walks the talk.
The afternoon was spent at home. The kids had some friends over and Clay and I took turns going for runs. Well – mine was technically a walk with just sporadic running but I since I walk pretty fast and run fairly slow it’s about a wash. I spent most of my time on the trail near our house and knocked out 5 miles in a little over a hour. I am making it a point to exercise more outdoors, regardless of weather, because I’ve learned that fresh air is something I truly need for clarity and peace of mind. Without it – I am a mess.
Before dinner, we went to Nalls Produce, which is a local produce market that also has quite the impressive pumpkin display. We opted not to get pumpkins at Great Country Farms last weekend so we picked up two 30-pounders at Nalls to flank our front door. Our visit to the local market was just yet another reminder of just how much we like living in our community. Which makes my dealing with disappointment post seem that much more irritating to me. This weekend, I vowed to focus on gratitude and mentally highlight all the good I come across daily. I like to think that I succeeded.