February 10, 2010

this is me...

at the beginning of 2009:


was when I made my first new year change...because I don't normally do those...and "I" for some reason set the beginning of the year "as THE DAY"...


I had some things click for me these past couple of years ~ which is why I made the decision to wear more dresses no matter what ...some may think...
~that's a good plan,
"sounds fun"...or even
"whatever ~ you go do that"...
but what I left out at the time I said it was the"why?" behind it all.


I've shared with you before...


I was a tomboy type growing up...some of my good friends I knew growing up would "AMEN" that...


but when I was really little I would wear cowboy boots with my dresses...and I would never wear anything when I was little that did not pass "my softie" approval...even at age 2 and 3 my mom says...I wouldn't wear it if I didn't like the feel of it...


but I've also told you I do also have a girlie side...even my wedding dress I picked shocked the heck out of everyone because typically people describe me as very simple...maybe even way too simple...


and it wasn't simple


but did you know I'm really not all that simple...not at all...


and when 2009 hit I finally figured out why....when I was very young I did wear those things...and then when I got older it just didn't happen anymore ...and it stayed that way for awhile...

well until I finally made "the decision..."


After reading this post by Tara and her mother ~ it brought it back a few reasons for me - the why! - behind my dress resolution.


...when her mother talked about when Tara gave up dancing ~ she lost a part of her that she still really doesn't have back...I have felt that way with a love too ...


After I tore my second ACL...I let go of soccer completely...some people think it's because I possibly didn't make it...but it was actually by choice


 I never have shared the why with anyone but my parents and Bobby...

I knew I wasn't going to play on the national team or anything like that but that didn't mean my whole heart wasn't in it to play for a great school...I had a big dream.


I gave it up mainly because I didn't trust myself anymore ~


You see I was obsessed with creating myself to be the best I could so much so that I would have 4-5 practices a day ~  I wanted to fine tune my skills so much so that I eventually wore myself out and my muscles never had the opportunity to rebuild and recover...


that is how I ended up tearing my second ACL...it was completely my fault...bad choices equalled a body that was overtired and my "other knee" overcompensated.


As a little back story.... Bobby and I went to different colleges our first year ~ {all the while we stayed together too} it was hard to let go of soccer and be in a new town...with not knowing really anyone...

I wanted to have time to spend with Bobby...yes...I know we were young...but some people DO just KNOW...


So I told the coach I wasn't going to try out but thanked him for the opportunity and his time...I could have eventually earned my scholarship but I had to prove I was 100% rehabilitated with try outs...an
understood request ~ fair enough
I would have been up for it until I realized it wasn't where I was meant to be anymore...I was not in a healthy place to just do the workouts the coaches wanted me to do

I always felt the need to do more or sneak more in, and I couldn't promise myself even with what happened  for the 2nd time that I wouldn't have added the extras.


So I prayed...and there was a different plan revealed to me...


I realized I could not keep down that path of self-destruction and doing too much because I doubt I would have practiced healthy ...and my decision was to let that dream go...


...it was an obsession I didn't feel I had control over ~ that doing more was better...


that's not ever really true in anything I've experienced
I wanted and needed the peace that I felt when I loved it

and I wanted to try to remember the good memories with it like when I used to walk to the high school with the ball bag and cones over my shoulder...I wanted to smile when I thought of that...not think..."it just wasn't enough" or "why didn't I take a break?"


I was too stubborn and young to realize everyone needs a break...heck...even to have fun!


it was not a life and death situation by any means when I let it go...but I was a young girl with big dreams...when I let go of it I buried areas of my personality that were great...and I still struggle to find those things within me even now...


I now can hardly remember all those years I played soccer...they are faint memories I suppressed because I missed it so...although Bobby and my parents will occassionaly help me recall things
I haven't been back to a soccer field since except two years ago when my daughter did soccer camp at age 2:)

sometimes when I see fresh cut grass it reminds me of a soccer field...and when I see a beautiful field from a distance...I still smile...


My routine during "off season" of soccer was this: {and actually very similar during season too}

I'm only detailing this for other parents...the just in case your son/daughter is doing too much...and by the way...it may not stop them anyway if they are stubborn and think they "know it all" {just sayin'}


wake at 5 am...get dressed go for a morning run 2-3 miles or 4-5 miles....I did 2-3 miles when I would work on speed and 4-5 or so miles to work on my conditioning...


I then proceeded to go to the high school gym and practice my foot skills for about an hour or until my first class started


My first class of school was actually an extended weight training class that had all boys except 2 of us girls the first year...so it was a full hour of weight training...


After school I went to cross country practice...for about 1 1/2 hours or so- of all running mind you...


After that I either went home to practice more soccer for an hour or so...or went to soccer practice with my off-season soccer team


unbeknownst to my cross country coaches that I was doing off season soccer...they sat me down after District when they found out because they realized I already peaked in our season...


and I still remember where I sat in the cafeteria with them when we talked...and they told me to just make it through state...and I realized then


"I screwed up"...and it was too late to fix it...


I let my team down ~ I didn't have anything left...


and two months later ~


my second ACL tore during the championship indoor game...{I obviously didn't learn from the talk from coaches and family}


{I promised my Dad I wouldn't go to that game because my parents caught on that I needed to back off and rest before soccer came in the spring}...but I didn't listen and I went anyway.


My friend in high school, Tara, brought me home from the game with a torn ACL {again} and my Dad waiting for me...he didn't know I was hurt ~ until he saw Tara helping me walk up the stairs...and he knew...and I knew he knew with the look on his face


Since then I explained..."I had to go Dad"...I made a commitment to play on that team, and I couldn't just "not go" to the championship game ~ of course my Dad understood that because he has been a coach his whole life.


I remember I couldn't even look at my Dad that afternoon...and my high school soccer coach came over too...and said "just wait Martha for the MRI"...but I knew...I did it again ~ I didn't need the MRI results.


And that is why I don't trust myself still...I want to be the best {the best for myself} so badly that I go overboard...I am still working on trusting myself so I can train for runs someday...


you know the real reason why I stopped wearing dresses...and even shorts in front of many people besides family when I was a freshman in high school?


Well that was when I tore my first ACL...and even though the scar is not bad at all...I was asked by everyone and told it was not pretty and even grose...and even my general doctor at the time said...well "no modeling for you Miss Martha"


but the crazy part to me is when the doctor said that to me...although he was trying to make light of the situation and be funny...{which he did make me laugh with that just a little bit}

but it hurt that my so-called "appearance" was now judged by scars I would have after surgery...


So that is when it began...I wore pants and jeans more often
And then when my second ACL happened my senior year
my scar wasn't as pretty because I would constantly rip it open a bit as it was healing getting out of the car to go to pt...


I never looked back to wearing dresses because I was always asked and had those faces from people that were my age in even college why I had so many scars..."they aren't a lot" and "I know you've had to have seen worse"...I wanted to say so badly,


I often thought...why are you judging my scars when others have it worse...


So I stopped ~ I rarely wore shorts and once in a blue moon dresses or skirts around family and Bobby...but never around others and if I did they were long enough to cover them...


The funny thing when Tara's mom put her daughter losing a part of her when she gave it up that day ~ I can relate...for different reasons ~ my parents and some friends say I have never been the same...very silly I know because I was too young to realize that soccer and my injuries were not what defined me...and in perspective it was "just soccer."


one time in my life I was out-going ~ I have always been girly but I feel I have sort of "punished" myself for my scars for so long that I wasn't myself to show that I have actually always loved to wear dresses...I have always LOVED vintage and iron...Bobby knows that but I was too worried to show ME!



but it is funny how things that happen to you shape who you become later...


And in 2009 in January...I decided to own up to my scars and not be embarrassed for people to see them...
because believe me...they really aren't bad...just in my mind they were...
when other people see my scars...they see scars...
when I look at them ~ I have the feelings associated with them...YOU don't see the feelings  ~ it is only me


and quite frankly...there is a million people who have it worse, right?


The scars are a part of me, and I have decided to own it and wear them with pride...
And when I wear a dress and sit down and it comes slightly above my knee...
they will show...
And I am becoming 100% okay with it...
So here they are...


They aren't bad at all are they...and it took ruffles for me to show them didn't it? And the place of solitude for me too ~ the beach...


my confidence is gaining...and I am starting to do better at taking comments with a grain of salt {which means I still stink at doing that most of the time ~ but I'm getting better}

I'm not going to hide my girlie side because of my scars
So when I got the comment the other day from a high school friend...Martha "take a picture" of you in a dress because I haven't seen it"...it made me laugh because she was completely right! rarely do people see me in a dress until now


this is me...and I now wear dresses...with not so pretty knees...well even not so pretty shins either...all those practices I didn't wear shin guards...


you know that plan that was revealed to me...I know it had to do with something bigger...because I didn't play soccer I found out about my fertility issues way sooner than I would have...and now hubby and I have two beautiful girls from His ingenious plan!


but my "dress" resolution I carried forward was a way for me not to cover up that part of myself anymore...God wanted me to let go as well as be proud  of myself in a healthy way so that I can give and become like Him....{  I've got a ways to go though:)  }

18 comments:

Shannon said...

Beautiful story, and beautiful pictures of you on the beach. Your knees are not bad at all and in all reality those scars are who you are and tell a part of your past! Thanks for sharing something so personal. I hope you are having a great vacation :)

Amanda Bruss said...

Your Beautiful...Don't ever think otherwise!!!
"Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars." -Kahlil Gibran

LuLu said...

Oh Martha what a wonderful post, I am so haPPy for you and making this huge step... Show those legs!!! They are apart of who you are and how stong and determined you are. Life is all about learning and moving forward, what a blessing that you see that you don't have to hide your scars anymore. Sending you a big hug! Can't wait to see all the dresses you wear come Spring and Summer!!!
Love the pictures... THey are all BEAUTIFUL!!!!
xoxo,
LuLu

Laurie said...

What a beautiful post, Martha. You look gorgeous in your dress!! I have too much to say in the comment section, so I'll email you later. But I had to say how lovely you look- and I just feel really proud of you for sharing your story- AND your knees!

Mrs. Dunbar said...

You are such a dear. Those scars are something most of us wouldn't notice, but I understand how deep they go. You look beautiful in that dress. Thank you for sharing, I know its not easy to be so transparent. Good for you and your dresses though!

Tish said...

this was a great post martha. you're right, they're not that noticeable AT ALL...i know it's silly, but i've always thought of scars as trophies in a way. you really do have this amazing story of being this ferocious athlete...while there may be parts of your story that you're not proud of it's good that you remember not wanting to let your team down...being an athlete that i always aspired to be like, etc.

if people ask you what happened i would totally keep my head high and brag that you were this amazing athlete that got hurt. trophy babe...trophy!

(I do the same with the deep scars on my right hand--got my fingers ran over by a mini van)

there's a model that hosts a food show on bravo that also has scars she rocks proudly :)

you're loved...

Kristin said...

you beautiful, beautiful, brave girl...i wanted to read over your post a few times before i commented...such tender thoughts and feelings...
those scars are what made you the gorgeous girl you are today...never be shamed for giving your whole heart to something you love...those scars bare the message of a strong, dedicated woman...not to mention kick your a** kind of girl ;0)

love,
kristin

Jeanneoli said...

You are so lovely. Inside and out. It is amazing the things that happen so long ago that keep us from being who we are supposed to be now. I love this story and I love knowing you a little more. Now I know how tough you are:-) I also under wanting to not overdo it because you want to be the best. You are beautiful and I am so glad that a part of you that was lost for a little bit is coming back.

Tara said...

oh Martha, it seems we have a lot in common, and I can relate to your post probably too much. I am so proud of you for opening up and telling your story...I am also proud you showed those beautiful knees and that you are finding confidence to wear dresses...you are beautiful inside and out my dear and don't let anyone or any past experience hinder that notion! xoxo

Londen @ Sixty-Fifth Avenue said...

Thanks for sharing your story. You look so pretty in your dress and I think you have beautiful strong legs.

Angela Harris said...

you are way to beautiful for anyone to be looking at your knees!
They are just perfect anyways!
LOVE that hand photo in the sand :)
Hope you guys are well !
Love, Angela

Suzann said...

Just popping in to wish you a Happy Valentine's Day!

Suzann (The Olive Cottage)

Rebekah said...

Scars are so personal to us, aren't they? We try to hide them, even though they are, as you've shown in this post, a deeply personal part of a story of what made us who we are. Well done.

You look great in that dress, and I would have only guessed that you skinned your knees biking with your girls :)

Andrea - Faded Plains said...

What scars...I just see a beautiful girl with a beautiful smile.

sarah said...

Just found your blog and think it's great. I wish I was in that warm weather!!

Sarah

http://www.pittsburgh-odds-and-sods.blogspot.com

Flower Patch Farmgirl said...

Totally loved reading this. And you look so beautiful in your dress! When I got to the pics of your knees, I got goose bumps. :) Your muscled, banged-up legs are the legs I always wanted! Alas, not in the cards for me. ;) Thank you for sharing this w/ us, Martha!

Texan in UAE said...

Your blog is really nice. This post is fabulous. Your scars are who you are. I don't have a toe nail on my right foot. I always was so weary when I wore sandals. But, now that I'm older, I don't care. It's me, who I am.

God bless, from United Arab Emirates.

patty said...

you go girl. wear dresses. wear whatever you want. (first of all, you're beautiful, knees and all!) but we become who we are by the paths we walk (or kick) down... embrace those lovely legs, and thank God for them. they are beautiful. ~findingserendipity.com