I wear leggings as pants. And other confessions.

Confession #1: It started with yoga. All the other girls were wearing leggings and it seemed like they were a bit more comfortable than me.

So I bought some.

Sister to sister selfie -- do I look ok???
Sister to sister selfie — do I look ok???

And then it got real cold, so I wore them under my running pants too. Until it got a bit warmer. And I lost the top layer. Leggings for running too.

And then, little by little, leggings on a random snowy Wednesday. I told myself it’s because it’s so much easier to slip on my boots this way, but… but it’s not… it’s…

See? Right into the boots! Easy peasy!
See? Right into the boots! Easy peasy!


I’m one of those people. Leggings as pants people. Do you hate me?


Confession #2: I flew down to Florida the day after my birthday from Central Wisconsin to Ft. Lauderdale via Detroit. That wasn’t the original plan, but a delay resulted in a rebooking and a re-routing and I had a couple hours to kill in Detroit. I hung out at the far end of the A terminal for a couple hours, reading and texting and Facebooking, like I do, until 30 minutes before my flight when I super responsibly got up to use the restroom one final time before boarding. As I walked in the door of the restroom I suddenly noticed the “men” sign on the door and quickly backed out — that was almost awkward! — and I ducked in the next. Crisis averted.

It was an odd restroom though. I needed a wastebasket in the stall (you know), but there wasn’t one. Ugh. Antiquated. No matter though, there was one near the sinks. So I washed my hands and ducked around the corner for a paper towel… at which point, a big long row of urinals came into view. My heart stopped, I whirled around, and in walked a man who looked just as confused as I felt.

Turns out… there are TWO doors to the men’s room. I backed out of the first only to walk right into the second.


Confession #3: I’m not a graceful person and falling while I run is kind of my thing. So stupid. And after something like my third fall in the last couple months, I have two seeeeriously bruised and skinned knees. I’m a 32 year old woman who is walking around Wisconsin in February with two skinned knees. For shame.

And it’s not even the ice, really. It’s tripping. Tripping over wonky sidewalks and the like. Even my pretty aqua green shoes are all nicked up at the toe. I want to be PERFECT at the marathon (since lord knows I won’t be fast), and these nicked up shoes and knocked up knees (at least my knees can get knocked up! ha!) are not going to do it for me.


And a million other confessable moments: I recently bullied (like, maybe she should tell someone about me…) a 50-year-old woman into reading the entire Harry Potter series and I don’t regret it. I fed my dog handfuls of butter after she swallowed a burr because it seemed like it might make it slide down her throat. I’ve spent way more hours than any adult should reading in the bathtub over the last couple weeks. With bubble bath. When I finally vacuumed my house last weekend, I recovered enough dog hair to make Curly a super personalized sweater and she doesn’t really even shed — that’s how long it had been. But worst of all: I let myself slip back into a dark place.


And that dark place, my darlings, is where I’ve been. I’m not sure exactly how it happened. It started the week before I traveled, I think… I got kind of busy and stopped doing the daily mindfulness practice I’d been cultivating. And then when I fell the last time, I stopped going to yoga because it really, really hurt my knees. The dark thoughts started creeping in, piling up, and I latched onto those again. I stopped writing, because I didn’t want to be a downer anymore. I spent an evening, and another, and another, even one particularly ugly weekday morning, sobbing about how much I hated myself. And I meant it.

Danger zone.


The truth is, I’m in a bad place. A place much worse than a men’s bathroom. (Granted, it really wasn’t a terrible place to be until I realized where exactly I was.) And I’m going to have to work really stupid hard to get back out again.

Confession #4: I feel really, really tired and I’m not entirely sure that it’s worth it.

I suspect that’s the depression talking, but it feels pretty true to me right now.


Interestingly, I know for a fact that there isn’t all that much “worth it” about running a marathon. And yet, I’m absolutely desperate to do that — willing to put in mountains worth of work to get there.

marathon training

So maybe I just need to print out some sort of anti-depression training plan and assume that it will be equivalently worth it. Fake it til I make it. Mile after mile.


So if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got five miles to go this evening yet — Curls spent last night puking, and I cleaning it up, so when 5:30 am rolled around this morning, I was in desperate need of a bit more sleep. But the treadmill calls and I have faith that crossing the finish line in DC in a couple of weeks will be worth it to me. Faith as well that putting in the work to climb out of the oubliette,* let the light in, and work to not be in such a dark place, will be worth it too.



*I use Audible to listen to books while I run. I’ve never read any Neil Gaiman before, but I couldn’t really ignore the legions of people I super respect who love him anymore and when I saw that American Gods was nearly 20 hours long (woo hoo! all that bang for the buck!), I jumped on it. Within the first 5 miles (I measure books now in miles rather than chapters), the main character mentions an oubliette. YES.

10 thoughts on “I wear leggings as pants. And other confessions.

  1. 1. Yay Bogs!
    2. I totally walked into a men’s room recently, realized it right away and thought “shew, it’s empty–no one will know” only to do that thing where you open the door at the same time someone’s coming in and you scare each other! So I had to say “Whoops! Wrong one!”
    3. Butter is Bentley’s favorite food– she’d be so jealous!
    4. I skinned my knee last week! So bruisy!
    5. I’m sorry you’re in a bad place. Keep those endorphins flowing! Thinking of you!

    1. Bogs are Alaskan approved? No wonder I dig them so much. And it’s no wonder I super love you, Aimee, darling! Men’s rooms and butter-loving dogs and skinned knees… you’re the best 🙂

  2. Re: confession 1: I think leggings as pants are perfectly acceptable. Of course, no one has ever accused me of being stylish, so take that with a grain of salt.

    Re: confession 2: I once walked into the men’s room as a child. Scarred me for years. Now, I will happily invade the men’s room if the line is too long and my bladder too weak. Yay for getting older!

    Re: confession 3: I am sorry about your knees. But I admire you for getting back up and carrying on. If I fell like that, I would use it as excuse to stop. But you are stronger than that.

    Re: Neil Gaiman: Love him! Glad you discovered him 🙂

    Re: dark place: I brought my flashlight. Tell me where to point it. (((Hugs)))

  3. * Leggings are much better than baggy sweatpants. It’s all a matter of perspective.
    * I walked into a men’s room, used it, only upon leaving realized my mistake. Bad thing – I used it again the next time I went to that store. Umm, yeah.
    * Bad places are bad times, but realizing it’s happening is good. Not that it makes it easier, but it’s good. Hang in there.
    * I love Neil Gaiman — the first book I read of his was The Graveyard Book. I still think about it from time to time. It was hauntingly beautiful.
    *I love your blog, enjoy your writing. Thanks for your confessions.

  4. Tons of confessions – I just love it!
    Re #1 – I remember when the yoga pants as pants was a trend in the 80s and 90s. When I was younger, I was a super fan of the “yoga pants” and oversized sweater shirts (that were more like dresses.) But I have my own confession about this one. I think I’m too fat to pull off this level of comfort. Although, I am buying some yoga pants … but mostly to hold my fat to myself so I would be a bit more comfy jumping around. I might turn into a yoga pants as pants person.

    Re #2 – The women’s washroom always has a long line, and it can get a bit ridiculous. I often go into the men’s washroom. I feel super gratified knowing my bladder is empty, and the women’s line hasn’t moved a smidgen …. and then other women follow suit. I think the “women” and “men” signs should just be removed and replaced with a toilet sign. Just let everyone do their business, wash their hands, and leave.

    Re #3 – The important thing here is, you fall and skin your knees, and then you got back up and dusted yourself off, and kept going. That resilience right there, is something I envy. I can’t wait for you to slay this marathon, while looking fabulous. I volunteered at the St. Jude Marathon, passing out drinks at Mile 6. I saw the first super fast man, who ran past us like “oh, is this mile 6 already? I’m not thirsty, I just started running 18 minutes ago” and I saw the last person go in front of us like “I’m just walking this thing, with the cops behind me – oh, are you passing our snacks? I love snacks!” I cried as each person passed us, until the very last. It doesn’t matter if you are first, somewhere in the middle, or last. It’s about overcoming your personal mountain. And you have a huge cheering section waiting for you on the other side!

    Re others + #4 – When I am in an oubliette, I often remind myself that it’s only as dark as it is because when I see light, I can’t take my eyes off it. But over time, the eyes adjust to the darkness and you can find your way again.

    As for Audible – do you love it? I’ve never been big on letting someone else read me stories, but I have such a long commute that I’ve been filling the time with Podcasts. Perhaps I could start listening to books too!

    1. Honestly, the biggest thing I thought about after accidentally using the men’s room besides that I was embarrassed (and what a funny story it would make for my blog) was that, honestly, it wasn’t that big of a deal. I’ve now been in both men’s AND women’s restrooms and I’ve seen exactly zero genitalia belonging to another person in either. There’s not really too much of concern that goes on in a public restroom, no real good reason for separation if you ask me. When I was at the most recent CTA conference in Milwaukee, there were signs asking people to use the restroom in which they felt most comfortable. Quite frankly, the most comfortable restroom seems to be the one that allows for quickest bladder relief, if you ask me. So I applaud you and your curly haired awesomeness for just going, screw the lines!

      Also, try some yoga pants — your fat will thank you for it. If you’re concerned that you’re “too fat” then I think that makes you a prime candidate, because wearing them will undoubtedly convince you that you are not. My sister and I had this conversation a while ago, she was right, and I’m obsessed with them now. It started with yoga pants that were still flared at the bottom, but that was a gateway to true leggings, and my body is grateful to me for it. Fat and all!

      And finally, as for Audible — I’m completely in love! Of course, there are less expensive ways if you have a CD player in your car and just want to listen there because libraries are great about books on CD. I often check out a bunch for drives across the yoop, but to have an audiobook on hand always (because my phone is on hand always), you can’t beat audible!

  5. Hi Rachel, I’m going to have to disagree with “I know for a fact that there isn’t all that much “worth it” about running a marathon”. The journey you are on to find your limits of body/mind in training and running a marathon is so “worth it”. It’s the journey, the discovery that is so “worth it”.

    In Victor Frankl’s book “Man’s Search for Meaning” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Man's_Search_for_Meaning), its the journey into meaning that keeps us going.

    I love you so very much!

    1. You’re so right, Dad… so right. I need to re-read that book. If for no other reason than to remind myself that if hope, meaning, life, can be found amongst the despair of a concentration camp, then there’s no reason I can’t find it in my own life now.

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