Coach posted in our team Facebook page this week, and asked “who are you?”
(He knows who we are, obvs. He just wanted us to interact and get to know each other a bit…)
Being a gobby bastard, I commented first and went for the “I eat too much and like cats” line.
Others followed suit but then a few posted really sincere, inspirational and honest responses and it got me thinking.
So. Who am I?
I am Bean. I was a lazy twentysomething who rarely got enthusiastic about anything other than Victoria sponge. I was a bit depressed. I was in denial about all of the above.
And then I wasn’t those things anymore.
I grew up with wonderful, fun and nurturing parents who always encouraged me to do the best I could but it didn’t matter if that wasn’t as good as someone else because as long as you know you’ve done your best that’s all that matters.
I stand by that. I’ve always been supported 100%.
I lived in ‘Murica for a bit. Where I learnt that Americans can EAT. And they also call their kids BJ (Bill Junior). Poor kid.
After that, we moved to Brussels where I learnt that you can’t ride a bike with two full sized french sticks under your arm (an actual cliche) and literally every local is some kind of predator.
Up until the tender age of 13, I had struggled with Dépaysement (french: the sense of being a fish out of water or the disorientation felt in a foreign country or culture). I never really “fit” anywhere. And when we moved back to Scotland, I was plunged into a local school with a ridiculous hair cut and an even more ridiculous English/American accent.
Hello bullies? Yes. One easy target. Do your worst.
There followed 6 years of secondary school where I had heartbreaks and made friends and lost friends and cried and laughed and smoked in the bike sheds. I settled. Eventually.
Four years of University and a fashion degree came next. Which I’ve used HARD and ended up crawling my way to being a Buyer. A grown up actual proper job!! A job I could only dream of in the days of Rachel Green working for Bloomingdales in Friends.
But something didn’t fit. I was getting fat. And lazy. And my back hurt constantly. I felt lost again.
So I made a change. I don’t think there was a specific moment where I said “no more cake” (because…. Well…. CAKE!) but there was a change. My Saturday’s ceased revolving around the telly and trips to the shop for more croissants. I started walking everywhere all the time. And eventually I graduated to running.
From 12st 10 to 10st 6 in a year, I finished my first Marathon on May 25th 2014. My biggest, proudest moment to date.
So. Who am I NOW?
I’m still a twentysomething (just). But now I am a runner. I am a swimmer. I am a (mostly terrified) cyclist. I WILL be a triathlete. I am a buyer. I am a friend. I am a girlfriend. I am a best friend. I am a cat lady. I am often crabbit. I am either too late or too early. I don’t like a lot of humans. I do like a lot of cake. (At least I earn it nowadays….) I am a proud daughter and an even prouder sister.
That’s who I am.