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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Momma Who is Rocking It: Laura Currey

Introducing my new segment, Mommas Who Are Rocking It. I will interview inspiring women who balance their busy lives with children with seemingly effortless style, compassion and grace. The women who make it all look easy. You could almost be agitated by their perfection but these are the type of women you really want to laugh over a latte with. They are wonderfully human, happy and full of moments of failing at parenthood and moments of pure, sweet success. These are the girls next door that we can all learn from. I will get to know how they do it all, what they hope their children learn from them and every parents fantasy, what they would do if they won the lottery.

Momma Who is Rocking It: Meet Laura Currey

You may have seen Laura Currey at the gym. Or running. Or biking. Or swimming or volunteering or substitute teaching or at girl scouts or cheering at basketball games... and the list grows daily. She is a mother of four, a triathlete and she is even more friendly than she is fit. Here is a glimpse of her life, her intense workouts and how she stays so extraordinarily motivated. Brace yourself, you may want to sign up for a marathon after you hear what she has to say...

Her stats: 45-year old mother to Katie (5 years old), Mia "Peanut" (8 years), Maddie (11 years) and Michael (13 years); married to Mike Currey for 15 years; part time substitute teacher and triathlete

  • You have been married for fifteen years. What is your best tip for making it work?
    • Above all else, we genuinely like each other. We respect each other. We let each person have their own identity and let each other do what they feel passionate about. We try not to be the squashers of each others dreams. We are secure, not jealous or petty or to harp on any little thing. I think when you are happy in yourself, you can be happier as a couple. We also like hanging out with our kids and having fun as a family.
  • Describe your triathlete training and weekly workouts.
    • I like to train for ten hours a week, rotating between kettlebell class, the elliptical machine, spinning class in winter, biking when it's nice out, crosstraining and swimming. Because of arthritis in my knees, my knees are much older than my chronological age, I minimize running and can only do it once every two weeks which is why I crosstrain. I would love to do a half-iron or a full-iron but I can't because of my knees. I don't want to get them replaced- I'm only 45! I'm no baby but I am in the land of knee replacement.

Those knees held up beautifully at the Annapolis TriRock last May.

  • How many triathlons do in a year?
    • 3-5, from May through October, depending on the year. The most I've done is 6. I love it.
  • What does the triathlon include?
    •  Swimming varies anywhere between 500 meters to 1000 meters, biking is 12-15 miles and the running is always a 5K (3.1 miles). I usually do an olympic distance too so the swim is close to a mile, the bike is 24 miles and the run is a 10K but that is a lot harder on my knees so that's why I only do one a year. 
  • How do you stay motivated?
    • It makes me sane. I'm a happier person. It is so mental health for me. I would need an anti-depressant if I was not exercising. After Katie, my fourth child, I had a moment of giving her a bath and telling my husband half-jokingly, that "I'm this close to losing it; I need some way to exercise" so he got me an elliptical machine. I need to sweat. I push myself so it is hard and I am happy. It is not just for my body, it is for my head. The day that I can not exercise is upsetting to me. When I work out, I have much more patience for my family and the world.
  • What do you feel hottest wearing?
    • In a fitted dress and heels. That is not something I wear very often... that is not my regular uniform.
  • Your four children range in ages from Kindergarten to Middle School. Does it get easier or more challenging?
    • When they are little they are sad about things that you have more control over and you can change it for them. As they get older, with their emotional needs it is more out of your control to be able to change it and make it better for them. You want to make things better but you can't always fix things. When they are younger, you can control their friends and their teachers. As they age they learn more life lessons but as a parent you feel more helpless. Little kids are more accepting, as they get older kids become more judgmental and you can't always control it... you just want them to be happy. But you can't guarantee it. I tell them to go exercise and find their happy.
  • Describe the best family vacation.
    • We like beach vacations- everyone at the beach together, family dinners, away from other influences, your family just hanging out together. We go to Emerald Isle, North Carolina with Mike's family and Montauk, New York with my family. 
  • Last time one of your children made you smile.
    • This morning. Everyday. All the time. 
  • What is the most challenging part of being a parent?
    • When they are little the challenges are the physical of just being exhausted. If you sit back and think about it it is overwhelming that you are such a great influence on this child. And you're thinking, I know some of the stuff I'm doing is going to put you in therapy but I'm just hoping that the good outweighs the bad. Every parent overall just tries to do their best but we are all human- no one is going to be 100% perfect so you just hope that your personality meshes enough with your kids' and you're making them happy that they will find their way. And not screwing them up really. I hate confrontation with them, I don't want to be the bad guy, I want to have fun.
  • Last time that you feel like you failed as a parent.
    • Well, I do swear a lot. I do work on having more patience. And sometimes I feel like that you do so many nice things for your kids and then they can't put their clothes away? Or I take them shopping and they can't take the time to put away their new things? It makes me feel I've been too indulgent. I do wish too that they had better eating habits... and more driven to exercise, they aren't finding their happiness right now doing that.
  • Last time that you feel like you rocked as a parent.
    • I like my kids and I like being around them. I'm more happy with how our days are going than not. At the end of the day, I'm not wishing I had done anything different. If they are all happy and getting along, that's a good day.
  • What is your best time management tip?
    • Realizing what you can accomplish. I realized in the past I used to have more of a Superwoman complex even before I had kids, of what I wanted to get done in the day. Now I don't need things to be neat before we get out of the door in the morning; I have no problem leaving my kitchen a hot mess. For my mental health, I can leave a bowl of cereal on the counter if it helps us leave on time. My kids also do better in being prepped ahead of time.
  • What is your standby recipe when you don't have the time or energy to cook?
    • My go-to meal that is easy and everyone likes is homemade pizza made with Trader Joe's crust. I can make cheese for the kids and veggie for me and Mike. It's nothing fancy but it works for us.
  • If you won the lottery what would be the first thing you would do?
    • Book a trip to Hawaii. 
  • What lesson or lessons do you hope your children are truly listening to you about?
    • Don't judge people. Own the decisions you make in life. Don't be deceitful. Find your passion. You have one self... one life. Don't be afraid to make a change.
  • If you could create more hours in a day, what do you wish that you had more time for?
    • If I had more time I think I could be more on top of things. I could be the person with the more organized closet... I think I could find more time to do the things I push way down on the pile. With an extra hour I could be more channeled to be more organized.
  • Do you have a mantra or words that you live by?
    • You are in charge of your own happiness. Make your own your choices, own them. and why you chose it. Do what makes you happy. 

Laura with her wonderfully supportive (and happy) family- Mike, Michael, Katie, Maddie and Mia.

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