I'm scared of becoming one of those boring mums who don't do anything fun - who sit on benches and watch while their kids do fun things without them.
I used to get excited when I saw a bouncy castle, trampoline, treetop assault course, climbing frame, ball pond, etc - and I don't just mean as a child, but as a student and a young adult. Alex and I used to go on those things together all the time, and we only got together when I was 22; and as recently as the year before Bethany was born we went coasteering, which involves rock climbing and cliff jumping. Now, I get excited when I see a bouncy castle because it means Bethany will go on it and I can sit and have a rest.
(I have an excuse right at the moment because I'm seven months pregnant, which means I'm bulky and tired and my pelvis doesn't work properly and I shouldn't go climbing trees even if I wanted to. But the sad fact is I've been like this the last couple of years too, and will carry on this way for the next 18+ years if I don't do something about it.)
This is not who I wanted to be. For years Alex and I have dreamed that once we're past the small-children stage, we'll be the kind of family that does fun and exciting things together - all going on roller-coasters, all climbing trees, all doing Go Ape. Not me being the mum who sits and watches everyone's bags and coats while Dad and the kids have fun. We know at least one family who does fun things together like this, so it is possible.
After I've had and recovered from this baby, I want to get fit. I don't mean sporty (I was never sporty as a kid, I hated school PE and especially running, but was always up for bouncing and climbing, which take a level of fitness I no longer have) and I don't mean slim (getting fit is usually a euphemism for losing weight, especially if you're female; but I'm already fairly slim, just hopelessly unfit). I just mean fit enough to have fun, to bounce and climb and swing, and dance ceilidhs, and join in casual silly games like you get at church socials, and not find those things prohibitively exhausting.
Thanks :) After your latest post, asking you for help with fitness sounds a bit like asking Stephen Hawking for help with adding up - but maybe if you happen to be doing something fun and mildly energetic that we could tag along to, let us know. (Mildly energetic means something different to me than it does to you, though. It definitely doesn't include hashing or parkrun, and I chickened out of your treasure hunt at Tish's because it looked like too much walking :( )
*blush* It's weird, I don't self-identify as fit, I think because at things like parkrun and the spartan race I am so obviously Totally Average (I mean, perfectly. If it's a race with 100 people in it, I always come 50th) but I guess it's all about sample populations.
I think you have exactly the right ideas - find things you enjoy doing and do them, and let the having fun get you fitter. Dancing is great for that because it's not like a run where you're halfway round, you can dance as few or as many dances as you want. If I think of things, I'll mention them - but you're right to recover from this baby first! :-)
*hugs* I know what you mean. I think being fit must be like being rich: I know friends who are really shocked that I enjoy running at all, and for years I was like that, because it didn't seem possible to try it without being an uber-competitive fitness obsessionist. But having very slowly worked my way up to running three miles fairly slowly, I'm amazed that someone can run twice that, or run several times that fast, or run a whole marathon several times that fast. And people who can run two marathons back-to-back are standing around saying "well, ok, but I'm no Usain Bolt".
FWIW, you were really encouraging about getting started running, without sounding like you were super-fit. (Although I think anyone who can do the uber-macho race at all is entitled to sound pleased with themselves if they want to.)
 Based on actually self-deprecating comments by people who are good at something other than running.
Thanks - feel free to witter more :) Beeminder looks good in general but I'm not convinced it'd help here - it looks like it would turn something that's supposed to be fun for its own sake into a grind of goals and statistics. ...then again, having written that, that sounds like a description of NaNoWriMo and that's still fun :)
It sounds as though you still find the same things fun but just don't have the energy to do them? But if I'm wrong and it's the case you actually don't find them fun any more, do remember that isn't a problem.
The phrase "not who I wanted to be" rang a little tiny alarm bell (though based on the rest of the post I'm probably reading too much into it): the important thing is who you want to be now. Is it the same, or has it changed?
I think there's a category of "things adults are expected to enjoy in order to prove they haven't lost their childlike sense of fun and wonder", and most of them* are things I never much enjoyed, even/especially as a child.
It took years of guilt and trying to enjoy them before I worked out it was OK not to, and I think that applies to people who used to like them just as much as to those of us who never did.
The XKCD cartoon about the ball pit fills me with fear and loathing whenever I so much as think about it!
Good question, worth asking, but I'm pretty sure it is the former. I did enjoy those things as a child and as a younger adult, and I do think I still would if I had more energy, and the XKCD cartoon (I nearly linked it from my post) makes me grin. I want to get back the physical energy to climb and bounce and dance, and also the mental energy and creativity to write and program, which also seems to have fizzled out in recent years.
I was also thinking it may be being too tired/too busy -- not just too tired for $bouncything, but too tired to plan fun things or do spontaneous things. If so, there may be small gains to be had by specifically planning things that you used to have time to do spontaneously (I find more and more people I know have transitioned from "oh yeah, it would be nice to see you, how about tomorrow" to "oh yeah, it would be nice to see you, why don't we go to the theatre three months on friday?").
But otherwise it may be hard without making more free time to relax your brain, which isn't always possible.
Coming in on this really late, but I strongly suspect that once you are done with babies and you have kids that consistently sleep though the night you'll be fine. It takes a lot longer than you think to really recovery from pregnancy and babies, when this one is four, I'm sure you'll be climbing trees and what not.