Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Year's Eve

Here we are at the finish of the Seattle Marathon. It isn't the most flattering picture of either of us, but I think it is very clear how happy we were!

I won't spend much time writing as another day is virtually gone and I still haven't done any work.

I really did burn myself out, didn't I?

Yep. I am soooooo glad that the days are numbered for my completely unreasonable Advisory work. But, alas, they are not over yet and there is a lot of work to do before I can hand over the responsibility of writing all of the lesson plans and doing all of the prep work. Blah, blah, blah.

Today I went and got a facial. It was pretty darn nice. Let's the past few days I have had a hair cut and deep condition, a massage (with the World's Best massage therapist, no less), and a facial and brow wax. I feel sufficiently pampered.

But even still, I wish that I had another week (at least) off of work.

I don't want to go back yet.

And the film festival is on the 10th. So much stress! It will be good for it to be over.

We are going out in a couple of hours. I'm not really looking forward to it, but Mr. C is. So I will make the best of it. Any kind of year-in-review stuff that I have come across on NPR has really been hard to listen to. I just keep having my own personal year-in-review and it is PAINFUL.

Hmmm, let's see...January 2006 started off with so much hope. Then we had our level II ultrasound and found out that William had a straight cord. Fear like I had never imagined (at the level of when Mr. C was diagnosed with cancer, but so very different). Then, on January 30th I was admitted into the hospital and after three days full of dispair and hope my baby boy was born...and we had to say goodbye. We buried him on my father's birthday, February 11th. The onslaught of disasterous events ensued...Cleo almost dying and costing us an untold amount of money (in addition to having to force-feed her with a syringe), my jeep being wallet, cell phone and digital camera being stolen...oh, yah, and my pen drive being stolen (the worst theft I was a victim of in the past was $200 in my wallet when I was a first-year teacher...lesson learned)...almost having to have D&C sugery because I had retained placental tissue (which passed on its own...which HURT SO BAD, it felt like labor--which makes sense, since it meant that my cervix had to dialate and my uterus basically had to contract to get it out) we thought that I was having bad cramps and that I was finally having a period after bleeding for over two months straight after William's birth (imagine bleeding for over 8 weeks--and I am not talking about a little bit of spotting but full-on bleeding)...I could go on and on, because I know that there was a litany of other bad things that kept happening, but I won't. Suffice to say that it wasn't until June that some sort of "new normal" started to set in. But then it was William's due date, which was dreadful. And since then my life has felt so heavy. I am ready for it to be hopeful again.

I am ready for a new year, that is for sure.

Huh, did I say that this would be a short post?

I guess I was wrong.

Oh, and Erin and I didn't go running today. She flew in from New York yesterday evening, so I had a feeling she might not be up for it. I called her this morning and got her voice mail...ate my peanut butter toast while waiting for her to call back. She did and we talked for a bit. I told her to go back to bed because she sounded like she needed some rest. She was all ready to go running with me, although she said she wasn't up for 12 miles. I would have been up for giving it a shot--even though the little voice in my head would have been telling me I was pushing my luck, as I am finally starting to feel better. Instead I figured that we both could benefit from some more rest. We will run together on Wednesday after our appointments with Dirk. She said that her foot had continued to bother her so she took most of her time in NY off from running. And now she has a bit of a cold...and that she doesn't think Sedona will happen. So that was all I needed to hear. It is for the best. We were both feeling so high after the Seattle Marathon that another marathon sounded so great. And maybe if we had planned for it all along it might have been possible. But I think that would have meant running Seattle a lot more conservatively when we ran it with all of our heart and soul. It will be good to continue running but to also cross train and do some core work and strength training.

So that is that.

I did run today, but had to fit it in before my facial so I only ran for 30 minutes. It was a good run, though, and I did it "naked"--sans iPod, hat, fuel belt, and--gasp--even without my watch! I cannot remember the last time I ran without my watch!

OK, now I need to tidy the house for the bazillionth time in the past few days (men are messy). Mr. C was teasing me that I am like Lady McBeth with the vaccume and the area rug.


Saturday, December 30, 2006

Thinking About William

I just got off the phone with my Mom, Dad, and Brother. I had really wanted to spend Christmas with them, but we were with them for Thanksgiving last year...and that was the only holiday that we spent with family (I was on bedrest through Christmas due to bleeding). I really wish that we could all be together at Christmas and not have to make a choice. We try to alternate back and forth, though.

Anyway, it was nice talking with them.

And now it is just about time for me to get to bed because Erin and I are running in the morning. Another day pretty much shot. Damn it. At least I got a massage today, that was good. I love Tiffany. I told her the idea of starting a daycare and she LOVED it. She was actually excited about it (later told me that her first thought was "Oh! She can take care of my baby when I have one")...and she was very encouraging.

I really can't believe that I only have two days of vacation left. And I have work to do! Ugh.

I guess I will do it tomorrow after my run.

Here are a couple of pictures...William's memory box and the stocking that I got for him.

Friday, December 29, 2006

sad, pathetic, whiney post

I feel terrible for what I am about to write. It is going to be whiney, pissy, and selfish.

I will preface it by saying: I love my family. But I just lost two of my vacation days, two precious days, and they were my last two days where I could be ALONE. As much as I love Mr. C and love spending time with him, I really treasure the days that I have to myself.

Yesterday I spent the bulk of the day cleaning and organizing the house. It was all needed, and I got some projects done that have been on my list of things to do for a long time...but they weren't very high on my list. Mr. C's older brother Clark and his new SO, Craig, came to stay with us. We knew Clark was coming but he was really vague about it all. We weren't sure how long he would be here or what his plans were. We didn't know if he would be staying with us or if Craig was coming along or not. So Wednesday he calls and says they are flying in Thursday evening and need us (me, Mr. C had band practice) to pick them up at the airport. Oh, and Craig is allergic to cats! Yikes! So this is part of why I spent so much of the day cleaning--to try to get things as allergy free as humanly possible. Since Mr. C was at band practice I hung out with Clark and Craig until he got home. We did go and have a delicious dinner at Circa, though. We also stopped off at Targit before heading back into the city and got an inflatable mattress so that they wouldn't have to sleep on the couches.

Today I did have some time to do some "me" things at the start of the day. I had an early hair appointment with Collin downtown, which was lovely. The salon was virtually vacant it was so early. Now my hair looks great! And I made another appointment with him before I left so that I don't have a repeat of last time and the time before (um, hair cuts in February and June...and that is it!). We went shopping at antique stores (most of them "craptique" stores, as Craig would say) in West Seattle and then downtown (near Pike Place Market and in Pioneer Square). I enjoyed spending time with them and am so glad that I got to meet and hang out with Craig. He is great and Clark really REALLY is into him (he even said "That is the man I am going to marry" after we dropped him off at the airport today). And we had a nice meal at lunchtime--Mr. C came home from work to eat with us--delicious food from Buddha Ruksa. Earlier, before lunch, we went to Cafe Verite~Cupcake Royale and had coffee and cupcakes...yum. But (here comes the whining) I didn't get to go running, and I didn't get to do all of the things on my To Do list (the *real* To Do list, the one with all of the things that I really want to do). And now it is late in the day and I just took some theraflu (why can't my sinuses just dry up?) and I am drowsy.


So that is where I am right now. Sad, pathetic person.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

thinking about the future

So tonight at dinner Mr. C told me that I should just go off of birth control at some point and not tell him. Which is funny, because he has said that to me before but it was years ago when I wasn't ready to have a baby yet. He was ready way before me. After the cancer he just was like...very certain about wanting a family. He would say "I wanna knock you up!" Ah, poor Mr. C had this dream of what it would be like for me to be pregnant that will never come true. He finds the whole thing very sexy. I am so lucky, I don't know what I did to be so lucky, to have a husband who (if I can believe him) finds me to be so physically attractive. Now, even if he just says the things he says because he loves me and I am his wife, etc., I still am incredibly lucky. Anyway, it was also funny that he said that because lately I have been remembering him saying that in the past, as I reluctantly take my pills and feel like chucking them into the trash.

Hmmm...not ready just yet.

But what if it really does take a while to get pregnant?

Not ready.

I finally called to make appointments today and hit three brick walls. First the dentist, where I got an answering machine. So I left a message and I will call back tomorrow. Next the perinatologist where I was forwarded to the right person to make an appointment, but then hit another machine...left a message...I'll try back tomorrow there, too. And even Gene Juarez was a no-go because their computer was down! I left info with them but they didn't call me back either, so it looks like I will be on the phone tomorrow trying again with all three. Such is life sometimes.

I went running again today and in many ways it was much better than my last run...but it was wierd. Ok, so normally a *report* of a run would be very brief: "good run, felt strong" or "ran hills today, felt great" or "tired." But right now things are not really in-the-groove with my running. I did, however, feel more like *myself* during today's run than I have since the marathon. Well, that and it also had some wierd parts to it too. It started off feeling good, smooth. And although it is cold that really wasn't much of an issue. And I am still having nasal congestion, but didn't feel like I was drowning. I did have to spit a couple of times (yes, yuck). My ipod shuffle was playing me the most awesome (mmm hmm, awesome, that's right) songs to run to (the cure, the drop, the killers, smashing pumpkins, U2, underworld) and there was about a half a mile or so in there where my pace/form felt PERFECT. But then my tummy started feeling grumbely...and, uh, I actually...well I'm not sure how to say this right. But I know this happens to all people sometimes so I can find the right words to describe it. Ok, tummy feeling wierd then like a burp but there is vomit that comes right up to the top of the throat...uck. My schedule is all off because of staying up so late so all I had eaten during the day before my run was 2 cups of tea with a bit of milk, a small bowl of risotto, and 15 minutes before the run I took a chocolate hammer gel. I kept running, of course and all was fine. I didn't get out the door until 4:15 or so, which meant that it was getting dark at the last part of my run so I ran for 45 minutes. Tomorrow I will run longer. Achillies started to talk a bit near the end but isn't bothering me now.

Mr. C also brought up an idea that we threw around years ago: me opening a day care/preschool. Back when we were first married we talked about it some but the idea didn't stick. At the time I had only been teaching for a couple of years and the idea of opening my own business/not teaching just didn't appeal to me, it also felt really big and not like something that I was up for. Now I know that I would be up for it. The idea would be to have a place outside of the home, so not just me being a glorified nanny with a few kids I care for. It would be an organized and highly interactive place where kids are nurtured, loved, and given an opportunity to learn, be creative and inquisitive. It would take money to get it all started. And I would have to do some good marketing and advertising. I wouldn't be able to start it until after having a baby, though, because of the high possibility of bedrest. After hearing about Becky's loss today I am even more resolved to take it super easy when I am pregnant again. So it would be ideal to start in the summer of '08. Where? How? I don't know. I will begin researching it and take my *water way* philosophy.

All three of our kitties

Here is Charlie! He is so sweet!

Jackson and Cleo get really worked-up when Charlie comes around. For Jackson I know that it is because of jealousy and he is defending his territory. For Cleo I think that it is just that she knows that Chalie gets the "good food" (I feed Jackson and Cleo inside-cat, reduced calorie cat food...Charlie gets the real thing).

The bottom photo is of Jackson and Cleo watching Charlie through the door.

I really am getting dressed, really

Yesterday I stayed in my pajamas ALL DAY LONG!

No, this will not be another treatise on the merits of my jam jams.

It just felt like a Sunday and I slept in anyway because I had been up so late the night before (didn't go to bed until the morning, really) so it was one of those days that you just write off. A nothing day. Well, a pretty much nothing day. I did manage to load the diswasher (which hasn't been run yet) and pick up around here a bit and sort of put away most of the christmas presents that we carted home from the folks. Today, so far, I am STILL in my pjs but have big plans for a productive day. I will report back about all of the amazing things that I have done later, after I have done them all.

I finally got through all of the links on "Johannes Ghost". Last night I fell into a blog called "Thomas waz 'ere" and it totally sucked me in. Wow. It is written by a woman named Jill who lives in Australia and has 3 living girls and lost her son Thomas at 13 weeks then had a blighted ovum in her next pregnancy before having the 3rd daughter. It touched me so deeply to read what she wrote. It also made me feel very differently about "miscarriage" (I still HATE that term...a baby died, plain and simple, and that term just discounts the life to me). So I will add links to my blog now, too. This way I can go and check up on these amazing ladies.

Some extremely sad news today. A woman from my boards lost her second son to IC. This is so sad and unfair, and scary to me as well. She lost her first son Dylan at 17 weeks. Classic IC--spontaneous opening of cervix and no way to stop PTL. A perfect, healthy baby just gone, like that. This time they knew and they had a Peri who was seeing them through and she got the cerclage at 13 weeks. But yesterday her water broke and there was no way to turn things back...infection would set in eventually and, at only 16 weeks, that meant there was nothing they could do. She didn't say if the cerclage failed exactly, so I am not sure what happened with that. If they were cautious of infection setting in, then I assume that that means that it wasn't the cause of the PROM. It is hard to say and there is no way that I am going to ask her because asking her would only be for my own self-serving purposes. The poor girl. She said that they are going to just focus on them for a while and not think about TTC again. I can't remember how old she is but I do remember her saying at some point before she got pregnant again that her family felt they were too young to get pregnant--they still live with family. At any rate, she is still young enough to give herself plenty of time to heal. She will most likely have a transabdominal cerclage in the future. This is where they basically do a surgery like a c-section and they place a perminant band around the bottom of the uterus. It is essentially to give the uterus the support that the cervix is supposed to provide--only it is perminant. Once the TAC is placed the uterus is basically "closed" (with enough of an opening to allow for periods/blood to get out and for sperm to get in) and she will have c-sections for all births.

Alright, I have a second cup of tea waiting for me and a long list of chores.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Pictures!!!! Yaaaayyy!!!!

I am so freakin excited I can barely contain myself! Mr. C just showed me how to put picures on here! It is slightly embarrasing how easy it is, but I can get passed that. He set me up an account on photo bucket, and showed me that I just need to copy and paste the url...only to find out that it isn't even necessary to do that! So here are my first pictures!!! There is one of him, too, that I want to post but he said "Please don't put any pictures of me on the internet." So we'll see how long I can hold out on that one.

This is Cleo, doing her cat impersonation (cats are persons, right?) of a statue. Both of the cats hop into the shelves and hang out there.

This is me, the morning before the Seattle Marathon!

Mr. C Christmas Morning

Well, I didn't last long! I already added a photo of the two of us together to my profile, which shows up on the main page, too. It is a photo that was taken when we were first pregnant with William.

This one is so darn cute:

So I'm sorry honey, if you ever come and read this blog you will see that your adorable face is here!

Your name, however, isn't--so hopefully that makes you feel better.

And here's one of me, looking pretty silly.

I just can't resist because you are so cute it hurts!!!!

jam jams & dead-baby blogs

I'm sitting here in my living room wearing flannel pajamas with Scottie Dogs printed on them. They were a gift from Bernadette. Mr. C told her that pajamas would be a good gift, because I love pajamas. Which I do. I have several pair that he has bought me as gifts, or that I have bought for myself. I love the fact that they feel like little uniforms. The most recent pair that I bought for myself are a light weight cotton and they have garden gnomes all over them and some tropical leaves. I find them to be kitchy and ironic. Since no one sees me in them besides the "inner circle"--the privileged few in my life who get to see me in my jam jams, thank you very much--then it is perfectly ok to embrace kitch in this way.

So that is how I am choosing to accept these Scottie Dog pajamas into my life--kitch, irony...sheer silliness.

Almost every picture of me during my pregnancy with William is in pajamas. Primarily in one or the other of the two polka dot pair that we bought last winter. One pair is black, with pink, red, and white polka dots. Mr. C got them for me when we were out Christmas shopping one day. I loved them so much that I bought another pair in red with black, pink, and white polka dots at an after-Christmas sale. They are silky and the waist band rolls down easily, which meant that they accommodated my growing belly quite nicely.

This pair that I am wearing now, the Scottie Dogs, are a winter-only, non-pregnant (or not passed the first trimester at least) pair of pajamas. Bernadette found them in XS, which is technically my size (so hard to find petite sizes...but I guess I could humble myself and go into the kids' department...uh, no).

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Huh, I really didn't set out to write a post about my jam jams, yo.

Yep, so I am sitting here on the slipper chair with ottoman that I bought because it was sooooo cute and matches my living room set-up so nicely. Then Jackson decided that the ottoman made the most perfect scratching post. Ugh. No way to fix that. And he is way too old to be de-clawed (any cat over the age of 6 months is too old, according to a former teacher who is also a vet.--she said it is like cutting off each finger down to the second joint...yuck). Anyway, the first year that we lived in this house we didn't allow the cats upstairs because we bought a leather sofa and chair and were afraid of what they might do to them. Once we started letting them upstairs it was all over with the cats only being downstairs. It just seemed cruel to limit their domain to only one level...and I enjoyed spending more time with them. The result is that now the sofa and chair have scratches from the cats losing thieir balance, getting startled, falling, etc. Some of the scratches are pretty long and deep. Oh well, it is just furniture. That is what throw balnkets are for...? Some people work really hard for their leather furniture to have that lived-in look...unfortuantely that is not exactly the style of these pieces (more modern minimalist than gentelman's den).

Yikes, this wasn't supposed to be a post about my livingroom furniture, either!
__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ I'll try again...

I stayed up until 5:00 am last night reading blogs! We drove back across the state from about 3:00 until 7:00 and I slept most of the time because: Mr. C had the heat up high and the seat warmers on and he was playing Tool, which for some reason puts me to sleep. So maybe that is why I stayed up so long? I guess it is part of is also because reading what I guess are best described as "dead baby" blogs is addictive. I find myself needing to know how things happened for other they dealt with it. I start reading and know what is in store for these people because I am coming on the scene long after the events have occurred. So I can go back through the archives and read just breaks my heart...but it also is affirming in many ways and yes, it gives me hope.

Blech. I am sorry to anyone who comes across this blog and suffers through reading my garbage. I really prefered when I felt anonymous here. Not that I am no longer anonymous, because I am 99.9% certain that no one has read this but me. I'm still not even sure how to help other people find me here. I am not interested in sharing this with the people in my life. If I were to do that then this would no longer be what I had intended for it to be--a place for me to go and get my thoughts out of my head. I cannot continue to write if I have some notion that I have to live up to someone elses expectations for what I should be writing about.

So far it has been random, at best.

I am glad, though, that I found the other dead-baby blogs because the reason I am here at all is to help me deal with William's death and to *hopefully* deal with pregnancy after living through his loss. I didn't set out to find them, didn't realize they were out there (so sad that there are enough of us out there that there this many actually have blogs) but now I know and I should look at it as a positive thing rather than something to make me feel self-conscious.

Have I let another day go by without running? It is gray and rainy out and if I get into my running clothes now then I can go out for a run before it gets too dark.

I'm getting closer to figuring out how to post pictures! I resolve RIGHT NOW to discontinue all self-conscious justifications. I was about to write something lame about how I should already know how to do this, blah blah blah. But the fact is that I don't but I will. Mr. C got me Photoshop Elements for Christmas per my request and I am so HAPPY to finally be able to begin using iPhoto as well. Downstairs I can hook this Power Book up to a docking station that has a big monitor and is connected to a printer and scanner. Finally! I guess that I do things in my own time.

I'm tired and this cold is still hanging on. I wish that I could go for a run and not have to hack and spit and feel like I am drowning. Yuck.

ok, the mac is tired and needs to be plugged in and right now that means that it requires me to type with one hand b/c i am too lazy to move.

peace out, then

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Christmas Eve

So this is Christmas...

The drive yesterday ended up being just fine. We stopped and bought chains before we left our neighborhood. Then when we got on the road we tuned in to the traffic update again and found out that the chain requirement had been lifted to "traction tires advised" which is a pretty significant downgrade. This made for much more enjoyable drive.

This next part is probably going to include some yucky descriptions of bodily fluids and whatnot...

Just as I was setting out for my run Mr. C asked me to keep it to 40 minutes. So this is what I ran then. Which was just fine. It was cold. I wouldn't mind running in the cold so much but I really don't like that hot-cold thing that happens. I start to sweat, which makes me hot yet even colder than before because I am wet. And I wear all of the technical fabrics that are supposed to wick away sweat, but I don't think there is much that can be done about this in the cold. My hands get really cold, and my pullover has little thumb holes (which I prefer to gloves). But as I get hot then I want to push up my sleeves to cool myself down a bit. But even when I am hot/warmed up my hands still get cold because I have this thing called Renaud's syndrome (I think that is how it is spelled) which effects the circulatory system...hands and feet get cold really easily and the capilaries have a tendency to shut down (hands and feet turn white/go numb due to lack of blood circulating) which is really yucky. So I go through this whole process of rolling up my sleeves, then unrolling them and poking my thumbs through the holes...then back out and rolling the sleeves up again, etc. I guess it keeps me busy.

In additon to it being cold outside, I still have a cold. Running with a cold is supposed to be just fine for you. I have read in several places that as long as the cold is "above the neck" then you are ok to run. When the cold is below the neck--lung congestion--you aren't supposed to run. But when I got sick just before the marathon it was definately lung congestion (I had disgusting yellow mucus chunks constantly and was taking special medication for it in addition to theraflu for the cough, sore throat, etc.). I ran anyway because, hey--I was two weeks away from a marathon that I had trained hard for. As far as I know, the running didn't cause any real damage. So here I am with a cold that is definately above the neck--my sinuses are completely full of clear snot--which somehow gives me the geen light to run. I am 100% sure that I would rather run with congested lungs any day of the week over sinus congestion. I felt like I was drowning! It was disgusting, but I had to spit every mile or so. I hope no one saw me and/or got grossed out. It was absolutely necessary, though.

It felt good to run otherwise, though. I'm not sure what the leg-thing is, but it kept bothering me for the rest of the day. When we were in the jeep on the long drive I gave it a good massage and it feels like it is a calf-issue. The very bottom of the calf (perhaps the insertion area?). At any rate, it is feeling better today. I should get on the treadmill. I am for sure NOT running outside here because there is snow on the ground and it looks damn cold outside!

In here very subtle, round-about way Bernadette got to the "question" about when we will TTC again. She worked it in when we were talking...somehow related to training for another marathon. I'm glad that she tries to be sensitive. She did say, at some point, that she feels like by next Christmas we will have a baby to hold. I said that I sure hope so--talk about the understatement of the century!

Things are pretty quiet around here right now. We had a nice lunch then everyone needed to relax--take naps, watch football, get on the internet...

Tonight is the big Christmas gathering here, though, and there will be a housefull. I don't think I know any of the guests this year--no family besides us this year. There are an abundance of treats as well. I am most looking forward to Mr. C opening his presents tomorrow morning. I realized that there are two presents in addition to the two that I purposefully left behind for him to open when we get back home. One I was aware that I forgot. I kept leaving it in my car because it is kind of big and I didn't want to deal with trying to wrap it I guess I won't. The other is a subscription to the weekend additon of the Seattle Times. He loves reading the paper on Saturday and Sunday mornings, so I got that for him (it comes on Friday, as well). I was going to get a copy of the newspaper before we left and wrap it for him, but it totally slipped my mind with everything else that was going on. So it should be waiting on the front porch when we get home (today's paper was the first of the subscription set to arrive).

Here is the big I go get into my running clothes and hop onto the treadmill, or do I just go and find some Christmas treats to indulge in? I suppose it doesn't have to be an either/or, really.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

really? running anxiety...?

I hate this. If it wasn't for Erin telling me that the same thing happens to her sometimes then I would think I was really coo coo. Well, maybe I am crazy (looking at "coo coo" written out is wierd) but at least I am not alone. At any rate, it is 12:35 and I am sitting here stalling. I stayed up WAY too late last night--didn't go to bed until after 3:00. I haven't done that in so long I can't even remember. Now it is late if I am up until after midnight. This goes against my natural night-owl tendencies, but is a necessity since I have to get up at 5:00 for work. Anyway, the plan was to get up and run right away. But I woke up to Mr. C on the phone with his dad telling him that the pass is really bad and we might not come until tomorrow morning. Ah...I should know better than to change my plans according to such statements made by Mr. C. He is notrious for making bold statements and then changing his mind. But when I want to believe something then by golly I will. It is not that I don't want to go. In fact, I am really looking forward to it and would rather get there sooner than later. But when I am in bed, trying to get some more sleep, I am inclined to believe anything that will prolong the snuggle time. And now I have a grumbely tummy, which isn't conducive to a good run.

But I will go get into my running clothes, take a Gu, and go out. Will I carry water? Why not. I want to wear my ipod, anyway, and my fuel belt gives me a spot to put it.

Just a six miler/hour run...whatever.

Oh, and I have this really wierd pain/twinge that keeps rearing its ugly head right in my left achillies area...well, it is more at the bottom of my calf but on the inside. When ever I rub it or poke at it it doesn't feel painful. It is just odd.

The phone just rang and it is Mothership and Mr. C is speaking really bad french to her. She just told him she doesn't understand him! Funny. I understood it, though.

I better go now.

finally done

I finished wrapping gifts just a little bit ago. Now ALL of the Christmas shopping is done. I still need to wrap the gifts for my Mom, Dad, Lara & Matthew, Dean, and Debra. But I don't know when I am seeing them, so I'm not in too big of a hurry to do that.

It turned into a long day of shopping. As soon as I got to the freeway offramp it became very clear that I was going to just have to chill. Each light took at least three cycles to get through. Angie and I had a nice lunch together before I got down to business. I got most of the gifts that I had planned to get Mr. C. It's a good thing that I stopped when I did, anyway, because I finally added it all up and I spent way too much money. Oh well, I really wanted to get him all of these things. Truth is that I want to get him even more, but I can't afford the things that he is wishing for.

I did something sort of bad. I got myself 8 mercury glass candle holders! Here is my pathetic justification: they were on sale for 75% off! I have been admiring them/wanting them forever! They are "classic" and beautiful and I will have them as part of my decor (or, at the very least, as Christmas decorations) for the rest of my life.

It is hard to believe that it can take all day just to buy some gifts and wrap them. I'm glad it is all done.

Another Christmas card came in the mail today. This one was a combination Christmas card/birth announcement of Lolly and Ryan's baby boy, Chase, who was born November 27th. He is a beautiful, perfect baby. I saw it and just had to lay it face down. After a little while I placed it in the card holder thing with the rest of the cards. Almost every card we received this year is a picture of a child/children. Lissy and Darren's baby boys, Colin and Anne and baby is hard to look at them. When Christopher got home we were standing in the kitchen talking and I pointed out the card to him by saying something like "Look at how lucky and happy our friends are, having a perfect baby boy" and he gave me a bad time for what I said and how I said it. Well, that wasn't very sensitive of him. I started crying and told him that there is nothing wrong with me feeling sad and even a little bit jealous. We ended up hugging it out.

Our grief is just so different from each others. I read today that the average time for a man to feel like he can "go on" (I guess reach acceptance) is 6 months, while for a woman it is between 24 and 36 months.

Here is something that I found the other day on one of the blogs that I found. I don't remember which one it was or I would give some credit. I posted it on the Stillbirth board.

Holiday Bill of Rights for Grieving Parents:
• I have the right to go from ecstatic to tears in 30 seconds.
• I have the right to be excited about going holiday shopping, only to get there and need to leave because of a panic attack.
• I have the right to not be joyful every single moment or day of the holiday season.
• I have the right to not send out Christmas cards, AGAIN.
• I have the right to NOT listen to Christmas music when I can't bear it.
• I have the right to be quiet, continue to grieve my child and be alone when I need to.
• I have the right to choose not to participate in gift exchanges and holiday celebrations at my place of work, worship, or anywhere else.
• I have the right to look for and feel joy and love in the holidays in my life; just please don't try and force it on me. I'll find it on my own.
• I have the right to want to buy my child a Christmas present and take it to the cemetery.
• I have the right to buy the present and decide that I can't bear to take it to the cemetery.
• I have the right to get to my family's house late and leave early.
• I have the right to walk outside and get away for a bit of fresh air when it gets to be too overwhelming.
• I have the right to include my child in any activity that I want without getting the "funny looks."
• I have the right to be angry.
• I have the right to be alone with my child and not have to explain why I want to be alone.
• I have the right to laugh at unexpected times and hug a pillow and talk to myself when I am remembering.
• I have the right to long to have my child back, to have the life I once had.
• I have the right to find a way to honor and remember my child during the holidays by whatever ritual I feel comfortable with.
• I have the right to be me ... the one who now exists.

Yesterday was the first day of my vacation. I had an appointment with Tiffany at 8:30 for a massage and then an appointment with Dirk at 11:30. I wish that I could get a massage every day. Tiffany told me that because of the cold weather that it may be pretty hard for me to train for the Sedona marathon without depleating my immune system...which is already compromised. She also said that catching a cold (or any other virus, etc.) isn't as simple as just coming into contact with the virus somehow. Chances increase when you have an immune system that is weak, and even being in the cold weather makes you more "open" to the virus--where a person who has a strong immune system can be around sick people and not get sick themselves. She said that from a Chinese medicine perspective when you are cold you literally have points at the back of the neck that can be "open" or vulnerable.

So I am in a bit of a qaundry right now. I really want to train for and run this marathon with Erin. Yet, another week has gone by and I haven't run since Saturday. And I know that I absolutely cannot force my body beyond what is reasonable. And if it is the cold weather that is making my joints/connective tissue so tight and sore, then that isn't changing any time soon. Ugh. It sucks. I'll take my running shoes and clothes with me to the Tri Cities tomorrow, though. I'm not sure what the weather is like over there right now, but I really do want to do some running. Tiff didn't say not to run, in fact she said something like "run because you love it, just do what is healthy." Dirk, on the other hand is much more of the mind to run more rather than less. He makes me think of the coach or dad who tells kids things like "walk it off" or "rub some dirt on it." (Which is pretty funny, since that isn't what he is like at all, in most respects, he is such a gentle, easy-going guy.) Last week when I saw him and told him about my knee pain he told me to keep stretching it and keep running. Yesterday he wasn't as hard core, maybe because he could tell how crappy I felt.

We have on our training schedule a 16 miler for tomorrow! No, I won't be doing that. I am up really late, so will sleep in. We are planning to leave by 1:00. I will run in our neighborhood, a slow easy run and I'll stay out for an hour. In Hal Higdon's multiple marathon plans he doesn't have a full taper and goes from 16 to 20. So with that in mind...(this takes a little brain power...let me see...) it is still possible to run the Sedona marathon if I get right back into things this week and begin running regularly again.


I haven't called to make any of the appointments that I need to make yet.

I swear that I will do it next week.

Friday, December 22, 2006

squeezing in a little bit of writing before I leave to shop/meet Angie

So I didn't mention that I got sick again. Yep. Saturday afternoon, as the day moved forward, I started to feel all stuffy. At first I was in denial. Then I realized that this was really not good. So I went to the drug store and got Theraflu and Zycam. Yuck. Another cold. This one hit hard and I stayed home from work on Monday, only to feel even worse (awful, head ache, nausea, etc.) on Tuesday--but I was back at work.

Which means that, yet again, I haven't run. I plan to go to the Y today and do some cross training.

OK, time to hit the road to head into shopping 3 days before Christmas.

But I have a good attitude.

It will be fine.


No time to write

Because Angie called at 10:30 and she will be calling back at noon. Which means that I have to go shower and figure out my game plan for today because she wants to meet me somewhere. She made me a cd for Christmas (the one she made me a couple of years ago was stolen when my jeep was stolen last year) and wants to give it to me today. This is sweet and in all honesty she is making me get off of my ass and actually do what I need to do today (the last day to get my Christmas shopping for Mr. C done before we leave for his parents' house for Christmas.) So...I am on the web, checking in on the boards and fooling around with the settings and formatting on this blog. And who knows how long this would have gone on if it wasn't for her, getting me out of the house at a reasonable time. So I say Thank You to Angie, even though this big part of me would rather stay in my pajamas today.

I really feel a strong desire to do some serious writing.

But it will have to wait.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

it's a whole new world out here

I need to post about other things, I guess I will later, but right now I need to admit (to myself, I guess, because no one else reads this) that I finally explored the world of blogs.

I honestly wasn't aware that there was this world out here. Now I suppose I should clarify...of course I am aware that blogs exist and that people write and read blogs. But what I didn't realize is that there are people like me who have blogs like this and who "know" each other and read each others blogs, etc. and basically have a community (for lack of a better way to describe it). I really am not sure how they find each other, except I guess I found a bunch of them--so I guess that I do know possibly how.

Here's what happened: I was on the preemie board on i-village, where I lurk because William was preemie (just didn't survive birth) and subsequent pregnancies have a reasonable chance of being preemie as well. So I check up on the women in the TTC/Pregnant after Preemie folder pretty much daily. As I scroll down to that folder I sometimes see things that catch my eye. A couple of months ago I saw a post from a woman who was pregnant with twins and pretty sure she was going to have them early (so she wasn't technically a preemie mom, and didn't post in the PAP folder because she hadn't previously had a preemie). Anyway, her story really grabbed me--the membranes of one of the babies had broken fairly early in the second trimester and the doctors had grim expectations for that twin (in fact for the pregnancy in general, which they encouraged her to terminate). But despite all of that she maintained hope and the babies continued to grow and develop. She ended up being on hospital bedrest and at a point where at any point they were ready to deliver if the babies showed distress of it there was an infection. She ended up going into labor pretty abruptly (I can't remember how far along she was--I think 28 weeks?). They knew that the baby with the abrupted membranes was smaller than the other twin, and that she may have some health issues to contend with. But they never even considered that she might not live. Unfortunately, she only lived for a couple of hours after delivery. The twin that had the entact membranes is doing great and they expect her to be out of the NICU by February. The mother, of course, is devistated. There are a few women on the stillborn board that I post to that have one surviving twin and one twin that died and I know that it carries along with it it's own burden. So, this is what led me to the "dead baby" blogs. The mom posted under the Prayers and Positive Thoughts folder and in one of the replies the cl put a link to the blog of a woman who's baby died. I clicked on it and started reading a bit. She had links to I think about a dozen other blogs, so I started clicking on them to check them out. And I got sucked into this world.

I guess I am sort of living in this world, but all by myself. I am ok with that, since that was my intention anyway. I have set up this blog as a way to help myself cope with this life I am living now.

I will have to let the idea of this possibly being a community/support swirl around in my head for a while.

It's funny that I hadn't thought of it that way on my own. I mean, I've been to blogs (the first one I found, also through the preemie board, is the tinytruman blog) but I guess I just always felt like that was set up by his parents as a way to share information with their friends and family while he was in the NICU...and that I was just peeking in on them (as a way to find some hope, since he was born at 23 weeks--only a week further along than William).

So that is my big new realization for the month.

Silly me.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

I feel like I am at a "tipping point" of those places in my life where things can go one way or another, both polar opposites.

My intentions are toward balance between work and the rest of my life, nurturing my body and spirit, and accomplishing all of the mundane tasks on my "To Do before TTC" list.

But then there is the prospect of falling deep into the pit of too much work and operating in (barely) survival-mode breathing down my neck, which is where I was all last week and the week before. Oh sure, I can justify WHY things have been the way they have been--grades due, nearing the end of the semester/units of study (the Film Festival is coming up quickly), blah, blah, blah...

I've been able to work like that for so long because it was just me that I was cheating...keeping myself from having a normal, enjoyable life. But in two months I want to run another marathon, and then I want to make a baby. I absolutely cannot do either if my body isn't in top shape. And there is no way to get it there without spending a lot of time taking good care of myself. Rest is a really big part of that.

And I am not feeling so hot right now.

Erin and I ran this morning. It was COLD outside. Ice and frost on the ground and my body hurt from it. We were supposed to run 12 miles, but just after the 3 mile marker on the way back in (so after mile 9) we both agreed that it wouldn't be a 12 miler today. Her foot is still hurting. For me, today, it was my left achilles tendon. This is new. My left knee and right hip were a bit sore as well, and everything else was what we have come to refer to as "creeky." So we stopped at mile marker 2 and walked the last 2 miles. After less than a mile of that I was really wishing that I could just run! It was so cold! I kept cursing, trying to walk as fast as I could. It was too cold to stretch, we just got into my car (after I fumbled with the key and the door) and after a few minutes I managed to get the car started, a few minutes more until I was able to get my seat belt clicked. Pathetic! Ok, so part of today's crappy performance was the ungodly cold temp., but it was also due to the fact that I didn't run all week. I worked like crazy every day.

I need to go to the running store and see if I can get some of those silly legwarmer things. And I will wear my stocking cap and gloves next time I run in the freakin' cold.

We had an intense wind storm Thursday night and it nocked out power all over the area. Luckily, our neighborhood was spared, but school was cancelled. This meant that I got to sleep in yesterday. I slept until 11:00! Then I spent most of the day cleaning my house. It is so nice and cozy when it is clean. And it looks so pretty right now, decorated for Christmas. I swear, no matter what, I am going to get a REAL tree next year. My little tree looks cute, though. I have it on a table in the corner of the living room and it is covered in ornaments and beads.

Now I get to revisit those research papers. I have been avoiding just sucks so bad. Why do I teach humanities, anyway? Oh yah, because I care.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

oh what a crazy, crazy dream I woke up having this morning!

It was such a messed up crazy dream.

Erin and I were running the marathon. I guess it was Sedona, because it wasn't one that we've run was a "new" one, but it certainly didn't look like Sedona. It didn't look like a marathon, either.

There were these pink arrows that we had to find in order to know where to turn, which directions to take. And they were really hard to find. And the course was odd, extremely strange. Parts were up stairs and through hallways and corridors, into buildings and rooms...onto rooftops. I kept missing the arrows and having to turn back.

I had some sort of monitor around my right thigh that was making my knee hurt (it is actually my left knee that is hurting right now) but when I moved it it stopped hurting.

So we kept trying to make it through but it was so damn frustrating. I started getting pissy and complaining to race officials who were at a table (a water station?) and they were pretty pissy right back.

Then Erin was wearing this white flowing dress--like one of those jumper types that girls wore when I was little.

I think that was the image that snapped me out of it and woke me up.

So get this--I literally spent 7 hours today editing/grading research papers and only completed five! Holy crap! I know that this is how long they can take, but I think I was in denial. I was proactive, set it on the calendar to return them to the kids after more than a week (we collected them on Friday, December 1st) but they were in Angie's classroom and I didn't go get my stack (ended up getting WAY more than she did that happen?) until this Friday. Honestly, I didn't have the time or energy to do it until today anyway. But at the rate it is taking me I won't be ready to give them back to them until Wednesday, and that will mean that the grades won't go into the gradebook until after mid-quarter grades are submitted for this report card. But that is just par for the course this year. My time and attention has been so dominated on the Advisories and my other projects. Thank goodness those are on their way off of my plate.

But tomorrow my planning period is GONE because I have the kids who are not going on the 9th Grade Advisory field trip to the Elementary schools. And I haven't given much thought to what we will do. I guess...SSR, lunch, the "Hands Across the Classroom" activity (after a journal write and connections) then...another team builder activity. Goodness knows those kids need some team building type stuff. Maybe I will have them start making some cards so that they can teach their classes about it on Wednesday...?

Saturday, December 9, 2006

I think it's time to baby myself...

I got up and went for a run with Erin this morning. It would have been nice to sleep in, since I got so little sleep all week and am exhausted. But I did get up and we ended up running about 9 miles (a little more). It felt ok, not too bad. It was a little labored, definately not an "easy" run, but not a difficult one either. My left knee started to bother me during the last couple of miles. I have ice on it now and will continue to ice it over the next few days/until it is feeling better. We decided that we are for sure going to train for the Sedona marathon in February. We were talking about it during our run and even if something happens--like an injury or for some other reason we are not able to run the marathon--then we can just run the half and/or go to a spa or something. At any rate, it will be nice to go to Sedona for a long weekend with Erin.

This means that I need to take MUCH better care of myself than I have been for the last two weeks (and, really, even before then). Since we plan to start TTC after this marathon (as in, right after) then I really need to make sure my nutrition is over-the-top nourishing and nutritious. And I absolutely must get enough sleep. I know how important sleep is, and how sensitive I am to getting enough sleep--especially when I am in training. And all of this will require working reasonable hours. No more late nights at work, getting home after 8:00.

I am tired of making these statements and then not following through. I am so good (maybe too good) and "doing it all" when it comes to work. But when it comes to taking care of myself I haven't been as good (sometimes downright bad).

What is required/necessary to make sure that I meet this goal? Well, I guess treating it like I treat my other goals--by being proactive and having an action plan. So now I will do that.

Friday, December 8, 2006

tired, tired, beyond tired

This week I worked WAY too many hours and have slept an average of 5 1/2 hours each night. In fact, Mr. C just told me that it is time for me to go to bed. He says he is locking me out of production. Funny. But I am getting up early in the morning to go running with Erin. I ran on Wednesday--went to the YMCA after my appointment with Dirk. I went into the steam room after a good stretch.

The kitties are downstairs because Jackson was messing around with the Christmas tree. So when Charles showed up on the deck Mr. C brought him into the house. This is the first time that he has been inside. He is so sweet and cuddely. He wasn't in to staying for long, though. Which is probably a good thing.

OK, it is sleepy-time.

Tuesday, December 5, 2006

Still Tired...But Feeling Better

So I actually broke down and cried yesterday when I was at work. It wasn't in front of anyone besides Angie, who I am very close with...which is why it happened.

But I pulled it together and didn't lose it entirely.

When I first got to work I stopped in to talk to Sheri and ask her if she had time to meet with me after school. This turned out to be a good meeting.

I actually asked for help.

I know that it is terribly cliche to say this--but I NEVER ask for help when it comes to work. And she was, of course, wonderful. She is so supportive, no matter what, but she was beyond all expectations with this one. She went so far as to tell me that she doesn't think that I should be working in the capacity that I have been with either of the two Advisory teams. I had fully expected to be able to step away from the 10th grade team--as they are working quite well (writing all of their own lesson plans, coordinating their own projects, etc.). She agreed that they don't need me to facilitate their meetings and that I can work as a support for them as needed. Which is how she interprets my job description in that regard, anyway. She said that my job description pretty much outlines that I designed the program...not that I run the darn thing--the actual teachers should do that. So today was my last meeting with them. She will go to the next one (which I have to miss due to a parent-teacher conference) and fill them in on the fact that they are on their own from here on out.

The 9th grade team is the one that I didn't expect to be able to get away from. I envisioned myself continuing through the rest of the school year--writing their lesson plans, prepping all of the materials, facilitating all of the meetings and problem-solving with the advisors. Basically I have been doing all of the work and they teach the class. It sucks for me. I don't even teach the class, yet I do more prep for it than my art classes. So Sheri told me that her goal would be for me to step away at the semester change! Wow. She said that she will come to our next meeting to fill the group in on how things will roll out and to let them know that we will have a work day in January (she already is lining up the subs for us) to do some preliminary planning. On that day we will look at the calendar for second semester and assign lesson plans to each of the advisors and set up expectations for their work and meetings, etc. Just like with the 10th grade team, I will be there as a support for them, as needed, but I won't be expected to come to their meetings and I won't be writing ANY lesson plans for them. There is a part of me that is freaked out, since I don't have the most confidence in them as advisors (all were reluctant to take the role, all besides one are not the "strongest" advisors)...but that is not anything that I can really do anything about, whether I am the one writing and prepping the lessons or not. Ultimately, they need to be responsible for their own work, so that they only have them selves to account for the quality of the work.

It will take a while for this to sink in. But it is a really big deal and as time goes on (by February) it will make a huge difference in my work load.

The other thing that happened is that I had a talk with Sam after our 10th grade advisory meeting today. I wasn't really too keen to talk with her, but she requested it. I am not going to get into the history of the whole thing, as it is late and I really need to go to bed and this post is already quite long as it is. The short of it: I was able to be completely honest with her about how deeply she offended me and I feel very peaceful with the way that I communicated with her. I didn't let her off the hook. It is so easy to say things just to make someone else feel better or even to just get them to leave you alone. I know that I can't be dishonest, it just doesn't work for me, so she would continue to know that I was holding negative energy toward her. There was a part of me that wanted to be very cold and matter of fact and just tell her that we work together, and that it doesn't matter how she feels, we have a professional relationship and feelings don't matter. But I am not a robot and my feelings do matter. She asked me what she could do to make things better (besides saying she was sorry--all the while continuing to say that she didn't intend to hurt/offend me...I repeatedly went back to my point about intent vs. impact and that it doesn't let someone off the hook to say that they didn't mean to say/do something, that the fact that you are unaware is part of the problem). I told her that there is nothing that she can do and that I am not willing to put the time and energy into "fixing" our relationship...that the only thing that is going to make things better is time. I also repeated to her that she should not interpret my affect (which is sometimes cold/negative/whatever) as being attributed toward her. I hated to do it, but I did allude to the fact that I have been going through a really difficult time. I told her that I have never been one to use my personal issues as an excuse in life, and that I am not willing to do so now, but that me being overly stressed is maybe 30% due to work and the rest is personal. If she doesn't understand the monumental weight of having to bury my first born child...then that is not my concern.

So that is another weight that is lifted slightly. All is not completely mended, but expectations are set...a plan is in motion.

And now I plan to sleep long and hard.

Erin and I are seriously talking about running a marathon in Sedona in mid-February. Crazy? Perhaps it is...we'll see.

Sunday, December 3, 2006

Feel Like I'm Falling Apart

Sundays are very often hard for me.

I feel "sadly unfunctional"...despondent, sad...even weepy sometimes, lethargic...and I find it difficult to even do simple tasks. Depressed, I guess.

I have work that I need to do--mid-quarter grades are due again this week (it seems like I just did quarter grades the other day) and I have a stack of work to enter grades for. Mr. C says that I should just take a day off if I need to...but I feel like I shouldn't take any time off so that I can save as many days as possible for maternity leave. Ugh. And it is not that the work is even really that time-consuming, once I am in the mode to do it it goes relatively fast.

I'm hungry, and he just went out to get us something to eat. Not the healthiest, I am sure, as he was heading out for fast food. But I don't have it in me to go get something healthier and I really don't have the energy to cook anything.


This so sucks.

I finally got a response from the Social Worker at Swedish about a therapist who specializes in Perinatal loss. So now I just have to follow up by making some calls/appointments. It is something that I know I need to do but am reluctant to do as well.

OK...time to try again to do something productive.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Brrrr...Snowed In!

I was so VERY happy to have the phone ring this morning with the message I was hoping for: No School! I didn't even fully wake up, just climbed back into bed and slept long, long, long. On my drive home from work last night the snow started falling. I stopped into the market for just a few minutes and when I came back out the parking lot and my car were covered in a blanket of snow. I actually slid driving out of the parking lot. Yikes. Luckily I didn't hit anything. The rest of my drive home was super slow.

I am sore. I didn't stretch or ice after the marathon. It was just so cold and wet and all I felt like doing was getting into dry clothes and eating something. Not that it would have made a huge amount of difference, as it is normal to be sore. I have been keeping busy today puttering around the house. There is still plenty to do, as I got out all of the Christmas decorations on Friday but didn't get things put out/away before the marathon.

The report is that there is more snow coming, but it hasn't snowed all day so it is hard to imagine. While it would be nice to have another day off of work, tomorrow is a half-day anyway and it is a "gold" day (periods 5-8) which is my "easy" day--I teach one intro. class and the other two are advanced (Drawing & Painting and AP Studio Art). Whatever...

I hope Charles is ok out there in this snow. He came by yesterday and I put some food out for him and made a cozy bed in the cat carrier with warm blankets inside and a cover on the outside to keep it warm and dry inside. But by the time I went back out with the blankets and such he was gone--just his little paw prints in the snow. Hopefully he found somewhere to stay warm.

I think I'll go back to tidying up around the house now.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

I Did It...It Is Done

Wow...what an experience. It is amazing sometimes how something can be over and it is like..."Really? It's over?"

Not that I wasn't wishing those last 5 miles or so away. The last 4 miles were MURDER. This wasn't because I didn't fuel up or hydrate properly--that was perfect. And not because I didn't train properly--I did well (the best possible under the circumstances), although getting terribly sick the week before last left me in less than optimal health, all things considered. I chalk the pain and diminished performance in those last miles (really everything after 22 miles) up to the COLD wet weather. My muscles still felt strong, but my joints felt frozen stiff. It was like I had about 10% of my range of motion available and no amount of will or mental energy could remedy it. I did use my mental capacity to get me though. I imagined being pushed, pulled...helped along. I called on Jesus...I thought of William...I told myself that if I could give birth to my son--knowing he wouldn't survive--that I could do THIS. It was with great relief that I ran down the home stretch and across the finish line. Tears of hapiness were in my eyes.

Despite the challenging finish, our time was fan-frickin'-tastic! Our dream time was 4 hours, which we were on pace for until, well, mile 22...we ended up finishing in 4 hours and 8 minutes. We were on pace to finish in 4 hours until those last few miles...but really, at that point I was doing all I could! Erin was always a step or two ahead of me and while she was having issues of her own my perception was that she was strong and that I was holding her back. Her joints were frozen and painful though, too, and her arches were giving her the business...she asked me at one point in those last few miles "Is it possible that my hip might give out on me and that I could collapse?" I told her no. I was so wrapped up in my own little world that I didn't pay it much mind. I had wondered that, myself, during my first marathon because I had a terrible hip injury that I had been nursing for weeks. It didn't happen then, so I knew that this pain--which was "situational"/due to the weather, I am sure--wouldn't take us down. Luckily, my brief but confident answer brought her peace of mind. She had to remind me of it after we finished when I was going on about how she had to babysit me during the last few miles and that she could have finished in 4 hours without me.

On our way to the marathon she was saying something and used the phrase "in the long run" which I thought was particularly funny considering that we were heading out for a very long run. This came up a few times. We enjoyed the marathon so much--joked around a lot and had a good time. It was so cool to run through Seattle...down 5th Avenue, across the I 90 bridge--which wasn't as windy as I had feared--out to Seward Park and back (where it felt like one of our weekend long-runs since we run that every so often) and then through the Arboretum and beyond...which actually is quite a hilly stretch of the marathon. They describe the marathon as "moderately hilly" which I almost scoffed at, having run the Anchorage marathon, but from mile 17 or so there are some significant hills. The most notable hill was after mile 21, a very steep hill followed by a long, long incline. There were plenty of other hills to come after that, pretty much until the end. I don't mind hills--my legs are strong and I do hill training--and they provide an opportunity to use different muscles. I think at that point that anything would have felt bad because that's just the way it was.

I love training for and running marathons and will definately run another one. I can't imagine running one without Erin, though, so that is definately a factor. If all goes well and we make another baby I won't be training for one any time soon. And Erin is seriously considering teaching abroad next year. I'd like to keep running a "new" one each time. And I think I prefer a late Spring/early Summer marathon. I enjoy training in the Winter and into the Spring...then taking it "easy" during the Summer to recover. I also think that I wouldn't mind traveling again for the next one--it worked out fine for the first one and I have the food thing down well enough that it won't pose a problem.

Ahhh...the future...who knows what it will hold?

Saturday, November 25, 2006

The Day Before the Marathon

Tomorrow at this time I will be milling about, getting prepared to run this marathon. It has actually stopped raining for almost two days now, which has me nervous. Does that mean that it is just doing to dump on us? Last night on the news they actually said that SNOW is expected this weekend! No, it can't happen.

We went to the Expo yesterday to pick up our numbers, chips, and "goodie bags." It was the biggest Expo that we had been to--but that does make sense as it is the biggest marathon that we have run. I was able to find a shirt to wear, which is a good thing since I hadn't found one yet. It really does pose a bit of a challenge to figure out what is the best thing to wear since we have absolutely no real idea what the weather will actually be like. All we can do is guess. Erin's uncle told her that he ran one of his best marathons in a snow storm. Please, please don't let it snow. Funny--I was so worried about the rain and wind (and I still am) but I REALLY don't want to run in snow.

And my sore throat, cough, runny nose are still around. It's all more pronounced when I first wake up, so I am trying not to dwell on it.

I need a mantra. Something more inspiring than the others that come up for me when I am running ("latte, latte, latte" "the faster I run, the sooner I'm done" "f**k, f**k, f**k"--the second two only surface when it is a really long run and I am getting to the point where things are really hurting...the first one, well, lately that has been my mantra pretty much all of the time).

Yesterday evening I started pulling out all of the Christmas decorations. I rearranged the furniture a bit to make room for the tree. The house is a mess right now, with open boxes everywhere and ornaments and decorations on almost every surface. I am supposed to take it easy today, so I think putzing around (as LInda would say) decorating the Christmas tree is just the type of activity to keep me occupied. That, and getting everything ready for tomorrow.

Ok, time for my um...seventh? helping of Thanksgiving leftovers. 'Tis the season:)

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving

It is a rainy, gray Thanksgiving. We are having one of the wettest Novembers on record...about to break the record from 1933. I went for a run today and kept myself occupied by dodging puddles. I only missed once when I was looking at my watch at about 4 miles or so...I didn't want to stay out too long, since the marathon is Sunday. I don't mind running in the rain but for the marathon it sure would be nice if it is dry and NOT windy. But it will be what ever it will be.

It is just the two of us for Thanksgiving this year, but that didn't stop me from making a turkey. There will be lots of leftovers which is good because I can take them for lunch. Mom and Dad and the in-laws are coming for the marathon, so everyone stayed put for Thanksgiving.

Today feels like a Sunday...a lazy quiet day.

Last year Thanksgiving was busy. We went to my parent's house and there was a housefull because my sister's wedding was a week later. Her husband's brother and cousins were in town from England and Italy. It was great. Everyone was admiring my belly. Since I am normally so little, the belly was quite noticable to all of my family. The relatives of my BIL from out of town thought everyone was crazy--they had no frame of reference to compare it to.

I'm trying not to stress too much over the marathon. It is my third one, so I know that I have it in me to do it. Yet there are all of these doubts:
I've been really sick and am not quite back to full wellness, what if this has an effect on my endurance?
It was so hard to get enough week-day runs in since I was working such long hours--Did I train enough?
What if it is stormy--windy, cold, and rainy? How much will that slow us down?
Will I eat the right foods, be properly fueled, hydrated...etc.?
Am I getting enough sleep?
And there are more doubs...but those are the big ones. I read recently that it is totally normal for runners, especially those who don't have a coach, to doubt the choices that they have made in training and be nervous before the marathon. So, once again, I am *normal*...but that doesn't bring much solace.

Focus on happy positive things:
mashed potatoes and gravy
pumpkin pie


Wednesday, November 22, 2006

stepping into this blog thing

Well, here goes nothing. I am doing this on impulse--was just reading another blog and followed the link to create my own. It occurred to me not too long ago when I was reading one of the blogs that I check in on now and then (blogs created by moms who are having difficult pregnancies, having the NICU experience, or who have lost their babies) that having my own blog might be a good idea. It is just a couple of days before my marathon and "post-marathon" is when I go into pre-TTC mode.

So here goes nothing. It will be good for me to finally get things together so that I can post pictures and whatnot as well.

A little bit about me and what has lead me here. A little over a year ago my husband and I decided to start our family. He had tried to talk me into it a couple of years prior, but I was really not ready yet. I just KNEW it wasn't time. I still didn't think it was quite time yet last August, I thought that I would be ready in one more year. But when he asked me what real difference a year would make I had no good answer. I realized that I was as ready as I ever would be (not having any clue how much more "ready" I would be feeling as soon as there were two lines on that HPT) and so we immediatly started trying.

We got pregnant the first month! I was certain that I was pregnant, too. I could feel something in the works--I swear--from the time of conception. My MIL, who is a nurse, didn't believe me. Then two weeks later when the test was positive she just had to shake her head. We weren't sure if we would be able to conceive without some help, as my husband was diagnosed and treated for cancer two years prior. He had banked sperm and we knew there was a possibility that me might have to go that route. Imagine how thrilled we were that we could make a baby all by ourselves!

I won't turn this into a chronical of my pregnancy. I don't think that I have it in me to do that right now, although I do think that I would like to do that some day.

In brief, the pregnancy was never one--as I imagine the vast majority of pregnancies are--where I was blissfully unaware of how delicate, precious, and fragile life is. I worried about my little "Wiggle" constantly. I came to the conclusion that this is just what it must be like to be a parent and that I would worry about this little person for the rest of my life. But there were plenty of reasons to worry for real, as the pregnancy had one scare after another. Ultimately, I went into pre-term labor (PTL) at 5 months (22 weeks), my water broke, and I had to give birth to my son William even though I knew that he was too small to survive.

Since then I have come to understand that I have a condition called Incompetent Cervix (IC). It is such an awful, insulting name for a condition. And I have none of the markers for it--there is nothing about me that would send off any red flags that this would be something to watch out for. Which is so tragic, because if I had been able to carry William for a week or two more he would have had a chance at life. I follow a blog for a baby that was born at 23 weeks in August and he is alive and well. Life is no picnic for his mom and dad, as they watch him struggling to develop...but he is their son and they love him and are so lucky to have him in this world.

My doctor has told me that in subsequent pregnancies I will be watched closely by a specialist (perinatologist), as it will be a high-risk pregnancy. And I will have a procedure done called a cerclage. The doctor will literally sew my cervix closed! At the top of my To Do list right now is to call the perinatologist for a pre-TTC consultation.

I am apprehensive. I want to have a baby so badly--yet I am also extremely scared. I am scared of losing another child and I am just scared in general of what another pregnancy will be like--filled with fear and anxiety...And then I am also scared that I won't be able to get pregnant at all.

There is a lot to be scared of.

But we will move forward because...we have no choice.