Once I was and now I am..

Lauren Tamaki

To be an athlete...or not to be
If I were to tell you I am a crazed fitness junkie who jumps out of bed, throws on the running gear and pounds the city streets every morning..I would be lying. I can think of nothing worse.

Mr. H laughs at the thought, saying that I was never an athlete. I snicker at that remark for there are plenty of activities I enjoy but I will be honest and say I have never been a serious athlete, social athlete is more like it. But it has been years and my exercise routine in Vietnam has taken the shape of walking and visits to the gym...when I feel like it. Which is not often. It's really hot here. Did I mention I am good at making excuses too?

So, I decided to make the call a few weeks back to start up with a personal trainer...again. It has been a hit and miss proposition since moving to Vietnam but I think I finally found "the one".

I am fussy about trainers, in the same way I am about tour guides, dentists and a good masseuse. I know, crazy, but that's me.

In a personal trainer, I need a good listener, one who gets my strengths and weaknesses and most importantly one who won't let me find an easy way out. I am clever at that. I usually start by laughing, hysterically, which means "you have got to be kidding me, let's stop". 

My new trainer is Vietnamese and with that comes a reality check. I find that the Vietnamese are quick to call it and say it as they see it. I should qualify all this by saying, he is kind, sincere and genuine in wanting to put his all into helping me with my goals. I like him, a lot! I just have to learn to stop laughing.

When I started laughing today..he added ten more repetitions to my workout. Say what?

When I missed the mark on where he wanted me to bounce the medicine ball today (heavy and difficult, made me laugh) he did not count that try and made me do it again. I stopped laughing..immediately.

That which shall not be named...until now
He frequently mentions my "belly fat" which I have never actually said out loud nor has anyone else for that matter. But..true to his culture, he calls it as he sees it. I laugh every time he says it which results in more repetitions. I hope to one day say goodbye to a good portion of the "belly fat". I might have to laugh my way all the way through it but I shall persevere.

You must have been....
Every session there is something new for me to ponder. Today he asked how many children I have. I said four, told him the ages and he exclaimed that "you must have been a beautiful women when you were younger". He said it with an open smile and in all sincerity, thinking he gave me the highest compliment. I know some of you are gasping...HE SAID WHAT? But you know what, it's OK. I get it and if it was anyone else, I would have reacted differently.

Countess de Castiglione (1837-1899)

A gifted writer with an eye for style, Leslie Harris @ Gwen Moss Blog recently wrote about the art of aging, how to feel beautiful and relevant to matter what your age... part 1 and how to feel beautiful...part 2. I like Leslie's style of writing, she writes from the heart and on this subject, I totally get it.

"Aging can be a process of peeling away the layers 
to our deeper self, it takes us along a path 
that is continual lesson on letting go."

"But there are gifts that come with aging well. 
An intangible wisdom and that mysterious feeling 
of being comfortable in your own skin. "

by Beth Carver

I like to think I am comfortable in my own skin. Sometimes I have to convince myself but most times I just get on with it... EXCEPT...when it comes to having my photo taken. Always happy to be behind the camera but never in front. The only exception is for my mother-in-law who I swear has magic powers. Her camera appears out of nowhere and before I have a chance to wangle myself out of view, she has gone and snapped it. In fact, I think, if it were not for her, very few photos of me would exist. 

At the end of the day, at any age, I think the real beauty is in our smiles, yours and mine. Is there anything better than someone sharing a smile with you or bringing you to the heart of laughter? I love it...and will take it any way I can get it. Even if it means a few extra repetitions in the gym. For once I was and now I am...just me and I am OK with that.  :)


On that note, I want to thank you all for the many 
wonderful wedding wishes you sent our way. 
Absolutely, positively and stupendously appreciated!! 
You make me smile...always.

Sending you warm wishes 
for a wonderful weekend!!

Jeanne xx  :)

A must read...from Leslie

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