Cassie’s Realizations & Adam’s Cake Analogy

The other day I had 2 pretty huge realizations that have helped me a ton this week:
Realization #1: I realized I enjoy running. Specifically running on the treadmill. I had no idea it meant so much to me. But I feel free. I feel good. I can just listen to music and block out everything else and just run. Focus on how far I have traveled. The other day I ran for the first time in probably a year and a half. Like truly ran how I want: on the treadmill by myself with loud rock music blasting in my ears. Lately I had been feeling a bit disconnected. Not that I was by any means unhappy with my life; I adore my husband and my little girl more than anything in the whole world, but it wasn’t until then that I realized I had put myself on a shelf. I wasn’t really taking care of Cassie. This isn’t to say that I have not been myself, or that I was resentful about my role as a wife and mother. I simply decided that I wanted to run. Bailey was napping and Adam had homework reading to do. We have a gym at our apt complex, so with encouragement from Adam that I didn’t need to feel guilty to take time only for myself, off I went. And it was an amazing experience. I was only gone maybe 30 min. But those 30 min I was doing something for me. I was the only one in the gym, and while I was running I remember catching a glimpse of my reflection on the tv in front of the treadmill and smiling. This was the reflection I remembered. Not because I was trying to be vain, but because the treadmill and I go way back. And it never changed. It functioned the same today as it did 5 years ago. I find comfort in THAT. That stepping on the treadmill I can freeze time, because when I run, it is the same as it was a year ago, yesterday, and tomorrow.
People who know me know I struggle with change. Granted I have come a long way and I am loving the ever changing life of being a mommy, but I didn’t realize I needed something familiar. Something that I used to do for me. Not for a boyfriend or a friend or a roommate. I ran for me. My goal is not to flaunt some crazy sexy body (trust me I still am recovering from having a baby!) or showoff some insane workout routine to be prideful. I just want to take a few minutes and shut off my brain and just run. This realization took me by surprise. I don’t claim to be a runner….but it does good things for my soul.
Realization #2: I am different. I am not the same person I was 4 years ago or 6 years ago or even a year ago. And that’s okay!  I struggled with nostalgia as I found some old pictures and videos on my computer. I almost felt like it was wrong that I was so different. That my goals and priorities have developed into a more mature lifestyle. I had this misconception that I could only be “fun” if I was young and hip and free. I used to be this intense teenager who had a tenacity to live life. And I felt like that if I wasn’t that passionate all the time and spontaneous, then I was boring. And that now instead of staying out super late, rocking the ultra skinny jeans, and being obnoxious and mysterious…I am in bed by 10pm, I’m no longer a mystery, and I wear “mom” jeans.
But when I was searching through those old videos and pictures at that girl who I was missing, I realized something. That teenage girl stayed out late so she didn’t have to go to bed and listen to the anxieties and self loathing thoughts. She was mysterious because she didn’t even know who she was, and she struggled with confidence and to know how to juggle “fitting in” and living up to her standards. In fact, she was still trying to figure out her testimony and morals. She may have been thin and seemingly carefree, but behind that smile was a girl desperate for security in her life.
I am that girl. Except that girl became a woman. She married a man who let her be confident and happy. She changed to live her life in line with her standards and her testimony only strengthened. She goes to bed at 10pm because sleeping next to her hubby is a reprieve instead of a fear. She has the family she has always wanted. She has a perfect little girl and a husband who loves her no matter her pant size or how much make up she wears.
The realization about running made me realize I can have a couple things that stay the same…but that I as a person do not have to stay the same, nor should I. I am meant to grow.
So for the first time I looked at the past and shook it’s hand and went on my way. I didn’t stop and try to live in it or keep it alive. I didn’t feel like by walking away that I was giving up on who I was. On the contrary. By walking away and acknowledging that the past is the past, I can BE me now. The woman I am today.
I want to add a third thing to this post because I find it really simple and yet profound. A few months ago Adam and I were having some pillow talk and he created this analogy that I love. This is what he said:
Life is like a frosted cake.
The cake represents our meaningful relationships. Our relationship with God, our spouse, our children. etc.
The frosting represents “things”. Our schedules, finances, housekeeping, social media. etc.
Instead of trying so hard to make the frosting perfect…focus MORE on the cake. All of the frosting could melt away, but without the cake you’re left with no foundation. Not that the frosting is not important to the cake, but without the cake…it is not cake. There is a reason that the frosting to cake ratio is not equal. I for one do not like having my frosting as thick as the cake I am eating. The frosting is meant to enhance the flavors of the decadent cake, not steal the show. By focusing more on our relationships, we have the foundation we need…..then you can work on that fluffy buttercream frosting 😉
I love that analogy. It is simple and easy to remember. 🙂 Mmmmm now I want some cake….
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These are our Bits O’ Bertoch.
Cassie Bertoch

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