So, you know, lets keep it just between us.
The problem is, in a way I havent felt in a few weeks, I feel called to write it.
I have to write the story whether I share it or not.
And, being the misfit I am, Ive grown too excited not to share.
Allow me to back up.
- When last I over-blathered my ‘not supposed to share’ Id returned to saying: You’re just not a priority right now.
(I kid you not about the *not supposed to share.* I found out the hard way it’s something of a secret who’s in the head pictured above.)
- The act of saying YES! was an experience of remembering it’s OK to prioritize family over all else—work included.
(I kid you not both posts are a celebration of the sweet sweet freedom pretty much no one in OAKLAND reads my blog)
- After many many false starts it was time to
shineembrace the TERROR Id had no idea would envelope me when placing an animal head over mine.
(I kid you not about sheer terror. Do we grow claustrophobic with age? I couldnt see. I couldnt *breathe.* The head is truly the closest Ive been to a full-on panic attack.)
I marked my debut as the child’s school mascot on my calendar and launched my fear-filled countdown.
You see, after donning the head in the photo above, PANICKING & yanking it off as quickly as I could I wasnt confident I could ever place it on again.
The mere thought of pressing the cougar-head over my own & PINNING it to the furry suit was enough to spark me to hyperventilate.
(I kid you not. As the child eagerly counted down days to her school’s Halloween parade I prayed something–ANYTHING!–would intervene so I didnt have to appear.)
Last week the day arrived.
FINALLY!!! through her eyes and CRAPBALLS!! (<—technical term) though mine.
(I kid you not as I awaited the parade start-time I WISHED for an emergency to prevent me from attending.)
Alas nothing intervened and it was time for me to make my COUGAR-debut.
I told myself I could do it. I reminded myself of the POWER of
moving meditation and the fact I could employ this as I ‘paraded.’
(I kid you not I outwardly panicked as they zipped me in the suit and affixed the head tightly to the body.)
I had an ‘out’ (another mom offered to do it if I “just couldnt”).
Problem was–more than disappointing the Tornado–I knew I’d be disappointed in *myself* if I didnt dig deep, focus on self-soothing & take the furry-leap.
And so I did.
(I kid you not I couldnt believe I did it. I didnt think I could. I spontaneously created a mantra of *you can breathe you can breathe* & chanted the entire time.)
When I was done (to my chagrin there’s no video of me dancing Gangnam style) it was a feeling of accomplishment unlike any Ive experienced in a long time.
(I kid you not Ive said this sentiment over & over to the poor Husband as no one else is *really* supposed to know Im the mascot.)
I write about doing one thing each day which scares me (pitching brands. pushing physical boundaries) yet cougar’ing showed me how *rarely* we grown-ups have the opportunity to do something which terrifies us and emerge the other side feeling UNSTOPPABLE.
(I kid you not. I feel frighteningly indomitable. NaNoWriMo? PUHLEASE! That’s simple. I can see *and* breathe when writing! Whats to fear?!)
I was afraid.
I had no faith I could face my fear.
I faced. I conquered. (I shocked!)
I feel as though Im capable of *anything* right now.
And that feels fantastic.
Kristina Walters @ Kris On Fitness saysNovember 7, 2013 at 2:33 am
I think as we get older we become hypersensitive about our mortality. You did amazing! Congrats on tackling your fear!
Bea saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:03 am
I think that is it, too.
You rocked it Miz!!!!
Erica saysNovember 7, 2013 at 3:20 am
Marcia saysNovember 7, 2013 at 3:56 am
Cougar’s got some moves too!
Linz @ Itz Linz saysNovember 7, 2013 at 4:02 am
lol I LOVE THIS!! you are so amazing and the tornado is so lucky to have you as a momma!!!
lindsay saysNovember 7, 2013 at 4:05 am
oh miz, i just love it! you RAAAARW ROCKED it! I bet tornado was so proud! way to conquer!
Coco saysNovember 7, 2013 at 4:24 am
Well, you sure pulled it off! Cougar’s got some MOVES! And it looks like you have a “handler” too. How awesome is that? 😉
I feel the same about a certain hill on one our bike routes. Last weekend I went to bed fearing the hill. I woke up dreading the hill. Thank goodness the hill was at mile 3 of our 44 mile ride so I could conquer it and smile the rest of the way.
Nina saysNovember 7, 2013 at 4:26 am
This has me thinking, Mizzy.
I love the “do one thing” quote but am never really scared.
Amanda @runtothefinish saysNovember 7, 2013 at 4:30 am
🙂 I love what yoga breathing has allowed me to do, it’s gotten me through a lot of scary things i now realize…maybe it’s just something to focus on or maybe it connects me with feelings of slowing down. Go mama lion!
Katie Heddleston saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:18 am
I LOVE IT!! And that lady who was sometimes dancing with you? She looks like your own personal security guard hehe…
Fun fact: You know Auntie Anne’s pretzels? I used to work at one during high school and we had a mascot (Twisty was his name)… and our Auntie Anne’s shop sponsored this ball toss thing at the end of the minor league baseball games – so guess what was part of my job description at times? Mmmmhmm!
Amanda @ .running with spoons. saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:19 am
😆 Oh gosh… THANK YOU for starting my day in the best possible way — with smiles and giggles. That was amazing.
Healthy Mama saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:20 am
You are gutsy, Carla.
The Tornado is a lucky girl.
Olive saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:21 am
You have a handler lady?
I could do that job LOL
I could not dance in front of people even with my face covered.
Colorado Gal saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:34 am
This video is absolutely fantastic. Carla, you are awesome!!
Natalia saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:35 am
Wow! You are amazingly awesome! I felt like *I* couldn’t breathe as I read this post.
I recently went through surgery and when I came out of the anesthesia I felt like I couldn’t breathe. I have claustrophobic issues and that experience just made it worse.
I would not have been able to do that! I need to go catch my breath! 😉
Izzy saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:36 am
You are really right.
When I leave my comfort zone now it is not al that scary.
I need to shake things up.
Izzy saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:36 am
ALL not al.
Kat saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:44 am
YOU ARE AWESOME! I’d be scared too! Even if you’re covered up – getting in front of an audience and doing something out of your comfort zone is scary – you motivate us to all think that way – get OUT of the comfort zone I SHALL!
Jenny saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:44 am
You’ve got MOOOOVVVEEESSSSS Miss Carla!!!
You totally rocked that costume. 🙂 It had me chair dancing.
Heather (Where's the Beach) saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:46 am
YES – I do think we get more claustrophobic as we age. What’s up with that??? And as claustrophobic as we feel, we also tend to pigeon hole ourselves too with fear of being out there.
Jamie @ Rise.Run.Mom.Repeat. saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:53 am
I giggled out loud while watching this video. You totally rocked it. Way to go, Miz!
Yes, I can keep a secret…but I totally suck at keeping my own…although….I have one of my own right now that I haven’t shared…even with my BFF. Perhaps I’m evolving? 😉
Fancy Nancy saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:54 am
From that video there is certainly no evidence of you being scared…you rocked that cougar costume!! Love that feeling after facing your biggest fear…like you are superwoman!
Carrie@familyfitnessfood.com saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:58 am
You rocked it! And I do love that you have a handler, too. You’re like Winnie the Pooh 🙂 or a Princess? Or Mickey? Not sure which one works here. But, awesome job!!!
Mindy @ Road Runner Girl saysNovember 7, 2013 at 6:02 am
Oh my goodness you did awesome!!! You rocked that cougar!!! Your dance moves showed no fear at all! Way to go!!!
Jody - Fit at 55 saysNovember 7, 2013 at 6:05 am
HOLY AMAZING!!! I doubt I could do it although people say when they are in a costume or acting, they become someone else & not who they are in terms of fear – a great thing! You dance better in that than I do without that on! 😉
debby saysNovember 7, 2013 at 6:10 am
Nellie @ Brooklyn Active Mama saysNovember 7, 2013 at 6:36 am
I don’t know how you did that Miz. I got the heebie jeebies as soon as I saw the first pic!! You conquered it though, so you get ALL the props!
Bonnie saysNovember 7, 2013 at 6:37 am
NICE WORK, Carla! I think there would be some fun freedom in having your head and body covered and you could just let loose! Of course, I always think that people in those mascot costumes are young men and feel like steering clear of them; thanks for proving me wrong. 😉
Love that you are so involved in your town and kid’s life after moving there. Like Jim Elliott said, “Wherever you are, be all there.”
Taylor @ LiftingRevolution saysNovember 7, 2013 at 6:38 am
OMG, you’re amazing! You faced the fear and did it! I bet Tornado was so excited and proud! Probably still reminding her friends who her mom was! Rock on!
Valerie saysNovember 7, 2013 at 6:39 am
Oh, my GOSH! That is so freaking awesome!
I had to face a major fear of mine last week and ask my boss for a (previously promised) bonus and a raise. I was successful and feel pretty indomitable, too…
…but yours looks like way, WAY more fun. 🙂
Ericka @ The Sweet Life saysNovember 7, 2013 at 7:00 am
Best post ever! 🙂
misszippy1 saysNovember 7, 2013 at 7:03 am
You totally and completely owned it! Well done!
Kelly @ Cupcake Kelly's saysNovember 7, 2013 at 7:12 am
As B’s favorite Mickey says “time to throw down your dance moves and lets groove”. It is so easier to conquer our fears when we are kids and teens, and a bit easier before kids come into the picture. Props to you for conquering this fear with grace and for having FUN with it.
Yvonne saysNovember 7, 2013 at 7:23 am
I haven’t had that feeling in a long while.
I wonder if it is because I’ve stopped putting myself out there?
I feel totally stoppable.
MIZ saysNovember 7, 2013 at 7:26 am
I can entirely relate.
When the other mom said: OK NOW IS YOUR LAST CHANCE. WE NEED TO GO. IF YOU CANT DO THIS—I WILL!
I thought: well cr*p. I dont think I can but if I dont? I fear Ill feel forever stoppable.
Jill saysNovember 7, 2013 at 7:23 am
Girl, you not only faced that fear, you made it your b*tch!! You go with your bad ass cougar headed breathing self!! 🙂
Axel (@ Iron Rogue) saysNovember 7, 2013 at 7:24 am
Moves like Jagger.
Cori @ olivetorun saysNovember 7, 2013 at 7:27 am
You dance better in a costume than I do without one. Loved it…keep rockin’!
Deb Roby saysNovember 7, 2013 at 7:50 am
I kid you not…
We think we push our boundaries every day until we are faced with actually pushing our boundaries.
TriGirl saysNovember 7, 2013 at 7:56 am
You would never have guessed that you were uncomfortable from that video. You did so great!!!
Jill saysNovember 7, 2013 at 8:12 am
amazing! you are a natural!
great listen that you might be interested in
MIZ saysNovember 7, 2013 at 8:14 am
OOH CAN NOT WAIT. I love that show…
geosomin saysNovember 7, 2013 at 8:23 am
This makes me want to dig out my bear head…
Lisa @ RunWiki saysNovember 7, 2013 at 8:26 am
LOVE it!!! work it cougar!
Susan saysNovember 7, 2013 at 8:28 am
That has got to be one of my most favorite videos of all time. Best cougar moves EVAH.
Alysia @ Slim Sanity saysNovember 7, 2013 at 8:38 am
This is so fabulous! Even if no one knows you who are, I can totally get the fear of being out of your comfort zone. I think its great!
Mike Fryett saysNovember 7, 2013 at 9:00 am
You are too funny. I find it interesting that of all things we have accomplished and been through as adults, THIS is what you fear most. If this is what gives you anxiety and fear then I say you’re doing pretty good. Also, nice moves! It looks like you had fun, if not, at least the kids did!
mimi saysNovember 7, 2013 at 9:21 am
Congratulations! This facing a fear off the cuff even when i thought i couldn’t is what got me to quit being afraid of driving over bridges. Really.
Kristina saysNovember 7, 2013 at 9:41 am
this is incredibly awesome, I love it! way to dance, mascot!!
I have A Thing coming up that stretches my comfort zone – I will be completely out of it!! I keep telling myself it will be okay, I am prepared, and facing fears is definitely a GOOD thing. gets you closer to that invincibility thing, which is awesome.
Andrea@WellnessNotes saysNovember 7, 2013 at 10:22 am
I have become a lot more claustrophobic with age, so I can totally relate to the panic you felt. What an amazing reminder to not let our fears stop us! I love how comfortable you look! Looks like you could keep going all day long… 🙂
quix saysNovember 7, 2013 at 10:59 am
Hooray for conquering! I’d be afraid of drenching myself in sweat but this is the ATX. 🙂 There’s something about marathons and (successful) marathon training that makes me feel unstoppable more than any other type of race!
mithonhasan saysNovember 7, 2013 at 11:06 am
Wonderful.Good job. keep it up.I love this.
Lauren Macaulay saysNovember 7, 2013 at 1:15 pm
Maybe you found a new day job? You seem like you’re pretty good at it AND like you’re having a pretty good time too.
Courtney @ Don't Blink. Just Run. saysNovember 7, 2013 at 4:00 pm
That was the awesomest thing I’ve seen all day! Great job on conquering that fear.
Lori saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:06 pm
You are a natural mascot! 😀
Kim saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:42 pm
This might be my all-time favorite post/video ever!!!
You totally rock!!! I want to be just like you – OK?!
Watching that video all I could think was, “the Tornado has to be beaming right now!!!”
I’m so happy you shared with us!
Abby @ BackAtSquareZero saysNovember 7, 2013 at 5:48 pm
You are the most awesome mom!
She Rocks Fitness saysNovember 7, 2013 at 6:09 pm
BEST FEELING IN THE WORLD! High-Fives to you ROCK STAR! XOXO
GiGi Eats Celebrities saysNovember 7, 2013 at 9:02 pm
I’M OBSESSED WITH THIS! I would have been RIGHT NEXT TO YOU, dancing WITHOUT A COSTUME!!!! 😀
Jasmine saysNovember 7, 2013 at 9:37 pm
How cool- what a fun thing to do! I love stuff that allows me to do a good deed and have no one else know about it.
And you are so right, we don’t get to do things that really push us to the edge all that often. Certainly a good thing to embrace as often as we can.
Dr. J saysNovember 8, 2013 at 6:02 am
ON the other side of our greatest fears is often our greatest joy!– Dr. J
I once met the guy who did Albert, the University of Florida mascot! Not unusual to have 100,000 people watching him live and millions on TV! That’s serious mascoting, lol! I’m sure he was nervous until he did it a few times!
KCLAnderson (Karen) saysNovember 8, 2013 at 7:05 am
That put a smile on my face and helped me put 2 and 2 together: I have fears that I have not been facing and the fear of getting my frozen shoulder unfrozen through very painful PT is what’s going to help me face my other fears. I mean… I have a choice…I could choose to just let my arm atrophy, but no way. I have to face the fear and feel the pain. It will be okay. Thank you!
cheryl saysNovember 8, 2013 at 7:23 am
That was fear induced? If no one knows who you are (mask head) then what’s to fear? That’s how it is. No one really SEES you doing things that you think are being watched. Triathlon? End of pack? No one cares? Old lady racing in a bathing suit passing younger guys? No one cares or looks. If they do I am not aware-just do what you love and take off the mask while you are at it. There is courage in not wearing one. (I think you even said that once…)
Tami @Nutmeg Notebook saysNovember 8, 2013 at 8:11 am
You rocked it! Such an inspiration – sometimes we have to dig really deep and move outside of our comfort zone.
s saysNovember 8, 2013 at 10:23 am
i love this post! something kind of related – i recently went camping for the first time (i’m not really an outdoors person, so i was initially scared by the idea) and ended up loving it. not only did i have a good time, the experience has inspired me to take a couple of risks in my work life that i’ve been avoiding/dreading.
s saysNovember 8, 2013 at 10:25 am
also, you rocked that mascot thing! i seriously LOLed watching that video!
Gwen saysNovember 10, 2013 at 6:37 pm
That’s soo awesome Miz, remember – do the thing you fear and fear will disappear. Well done on conquering yours 🙂