When I first saw someone posting about FOMO on social media, I had no idea what they were talking about. I actually had to search for the definition because I was curious.
Fear of missing out. It’s a real thing.
Back in the day, before the internet and social media, no one had any idea what anyone else was doing. Unless someone asked you, no one would know what you did over the weekend. No one knew your times or your places at events, much less the distance you did or the places you travelled to.
Everything has changed. I see so many races I’d like to do. And, sometimes I fall victim to almost signing up for things that aren’t realistic. Last year was a terrible year for my bank account. There were so many fun races and venues that I couldn’t help myself. I signed up for way too much, and wound up missing out on a couple of things. Kids get sick, husbands get called in to work, things happen.
Every year, I long to do a particular race at the beginning of summer. It’s a three day triathlon event not too far from home called Triple T. A lot of my friends have done it, do it every year, or are doing it this year. Usually, I have to work that weekend. This year, there’s no race for me to work. So, naturally, the first thing I wanted to do was sign up for Triple T.
With four kids and a husband whose work schedule is unpredictable, I know the harsh reality of it. I still can’t do the event. I can’t be gone for two nights like that, as much as I want to go.
Just recently, a good friend of mine asked me to do a race with her that was something I hadn’t done before. I got so excited, it was all I could think about the next day. It was a night time relay, on a loop course, on the trail. How could I say no? Well, I’ll tell you how….read the paragraph above again.
Ugh. A little piece of me died. There’s always going to be new and exciting races with people that I love being around. The trouble is, I just can’t. Even if I got someone to take the kids, the guilt would steal all of the joy (well, not all of it, but some).
A bunch of ladies in one of my triathlon groups are going to travel to do a 70.3 event together. I’d love to do it, but I know I can’t. Every year I fantasize about signing up for IMLOU, since it’s so close to home. But, I know that it’s not realistic for me. It may never be, unfortunately.
I keep thinking that maybe in a couple more years….maybe, I’ll be able to do all of the fun races that I daydream about now. But, by the time our youngest leaves the house, I will be 60. So, there’s that.
I guess the thing to do, instead of going into full blown FOMO mode, is to live vicariously. I will read everyone’s posts that recap their adventures, and pretend that I was there too. I can experience all of the excitement while sipping coffee in my pajamas.
So, friends, don’t deny me any details. Keep posting so I can enjoy your endeavors!
Run happy. Run long.
Amy is a trail runner and triathlete, a coach, a mother of four, an Exercise Physiologist and a Physical Therapist. She lives with her husband, Dan (also an ultramarathoner and triathlete), and kids in Ohio.