Wednesday, October 26, 2011

It's all in the numbers

I have more to post about my cousins death.  I could write about it non stop.  It leaves me with so much to think about.  Yet, I don't want it to consume me in an unhealthy way.  And although this is my blog and I can write what I want when I want.....maybe somethings are better left un-said or un-blogged about.  The funeral is yet pending.  That will be my biggest hurdle yet in this whole ordeal.  For now, to some degree, I admittedly put on my blinders and carry on with life.

I haven't ran this week.  I taught my cardio class on monday, yogalates on tuesday and that has been it so far.  Rewind back to sunday night I was thinking on what I should run this week.  I like to have a general mental plan of what I want to accomplish in the upcoming week in terms of running and/or working out.  Then it dawned on me....I have a race this weekend.  A BIG race.  I had to laugh at myself, because yeah I should perhaps taper prior to such a race.  We know how I am with my training "plans".  I don't.  I don't have one.  I don't follow one.  I just run.

So this race is called the Screaming Pumpkin.  I will be running 4 laps of 6.55 miles.  Wait a the math....isn't that a mara.....UT UT...STOP RIGHT THERE!  Don't say it.   I am not running a marathon this weekend.  I am running 4 laps of 6.55 miles.  This is different than a marathon because I won't be running non stop.  I'll run a loop, hang out with my friends, then go out on another, etc.  Running a marathon means heading out running non-stop (more less, unless you count bathroom breaks, etc) for 26.2 miles.  I'm not doing that.  I'm not running a marathon this weekend.  Just a cumulative of 26.2 miles.

This race is different.  It's a race against time.  More specifically it's a race against the strike of midnight.  The race starts at 6 p.m.  You have the next 6 hours (or less, if you want) to finish the 4 laps of 6.55.  The winner of the race is determined not by speed or who comes across the line first or last.  The winner is whoever can cross the finish line closest to midnight without going over.  This is very hard to do.  I did this race last year as a team.  We came within 1 minute of midnight, yet plenty more people crossed the line after us. It is still very fun trying.  If you do finish before midnight you are awarded with a wand & tiara.  Finish after and you'll be left feeling like Cinderella when you are given a pumpkin.

Really, one of the main points, is to have fun.  In addition to me going up there are two other teams of  8.  So there is a group of us women out there running & walking and having fun.  We are all different shapes, sizes, ages, running abilities, etc. yet we are there for the same goal.  To have fun.

In case you haven't realized it yet, if the race time is 6 p.m. - 12 a.m. then we'd be running primarily in the dark.  Oh and there is that little detail of the course running through a cemetery.  Not near a cemetery.  Right smack through it.  Yeah, I did this race last's a little freaky!  But it's safe and F~U~N!  I know you are giving me that weird look, I see it all the time.  I know...I'M CRAZY!!!!

Since the race is near Halloween they also encourage running in a costume.  Last year I was Minnie Mouse.  This year I am going to be a Christmas Tree.  Plenty of fun pictures are sure to follow next week when I tell you about the race.

Since I'll be doing all this running this weekend, I am taking it easy.  I do plan to sneak in a little run with the Sole Sisters tonight.  Otherwise it has been a nice break to "sleep in" and not feel guilty.  Which that still has me rising at 5:30 on most mornings.  Today I had my equivalent of sleeping til noon by not rising until 7:30 a.m.  I need it! 

I am looking forward to friday night and the Screaming Pumpkin.  I promise to give you a full update.  For now, I need to go work on my costume.

Monday, October 24, 2011


When I was running one day last week, thinking, praying, pounding the pavement away, while trying not to cry too much, I kept thinking of my Grandma.  She was the main parent/caregiver of my cousin Dustin.  His mom died when he was not quite 2.  Too young to really remember her. (oh, that thought squeezes my heart so much).  My Grandma stepped in and took on raising him & his older sister, my cousin Trista.

I was really reflecting on Grandma & all that she has been through.  What an amazing woman she is!!  Granted I can't remember everything, but I do have the gift of memory.  But I don't remember her ever crying too much or very often.  I'm sure she has.  How could she not?

To give a general over view of how much my Grandma has endured: she buried an infant twin daughter.  I know what it's like to "lose" a twin.  My John was a twin, but one that was lost at such an early gestation, that he didn't fully  develop & was "absorbed" by John.  That was rough on me, still is sometimes.  But to give birth & have to bury it, I can't imagine the heartache.  Then her husband died.  Grandma was left to raise 5 girls under the age of 10.  Every bit of me grieves not knowing my Grandpa.  It's just not fair that I didn't get to know him!!  Grandma has also endured the death of 3 of her sisters, her parents, another daughter & 3 of her grandsons.  One of them was my brother, who died when I was only 3.  I literally don't remember one ounce of any of that.  Maybe a good thing.  I don't know.  Even more of me grieves not knowing my brother.  My only brother.  Double not fair!!  Anyway, that is 10 deaths of immediate family that Grandma has had to say good-bye too.  Wow, I can barely stand the few in my life that I've had.  Of course, it's fair to say I'm just a grieving big cry baby.  Some people shoulder this type of thing better.  I do not.  I don't want to know or think about what will happen when someone really close to me dies.  I grieve those I never knew or even remember.  I try to elude such thoughts cause I just make myself a blubbering mess.

For several months, I have been wanting to write a letter to my Grandma.  I'd tell her, but she likely won't hear everything I say.  So writing it out would work the best.  I want to tell her how much I love her & how amazing I think she is.  It's a little hard, because I am a very emotional, touchy feely person.  I strongly believe in talking about your emotions and thoughts and feelings.  But I was not raised to do this.  So it can be hard for me.  It's awkward, not to mention I will be a crying wreck in the process.  However, with the semi recent deaths of her 2 sisters I am realizing more and more that Grandma may be soon or next.  She is well into her 80's and has lived a long full life.  It's only natural that her time may come sooner or later.

The situation with my Grandma is also different because of events that transpired when my Aunt died.  When Grandma became caregiver to my cousins it changed her role in all of our lives.  She was their "mom".  They were her main priority.  I understand this subject on several levels because a similar situation has happened with my own parents and my own kids are going through the same thing I went through.  I will admit, I can be a littler bitter about the whole situation. It makes everything so different, because while Grandma was so busy raising 2 of her grand kids, her role of grandma to us was given less attention.  I don't blame her (or anyone involved) or think she did any of it on purpose.  It's just how it was.  I still love her and think she is amazing.

So I need to get this letter written.  During my runs I think on what I need to tell her.  Although that usually leaves me crying (just like I've cried through out this post) so I can only think on it so much.  With anything that has happened recently I can only handle small doses.  I work & try really hard to carry on with life & not think about the impending funeral & family gathering for Dustin.  That, people, will break me. So I try to laugh as much as I can.  I try to "forget" and live life to it's fullest.  It's a day to day, moment by moment task.  I guess that is what the call LIFE.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


It's been a rough week.  Not really running wise.  I've run everyday so far.  Hooray!  That's good.  I did just talk myself out of running a double today.  The weather is ick (dreary and REALLY windy) and mentally I don't think I can make it.  Well, not completely true, but it's what I'm telling myself.  It's partly true, but it's completely true that I have a house that needs my attention.  Although I am taking the time to blog, as soon as I hit enter, I have a million loads of laundry to fold.  I bargained with myself that if I run on saturday it is ok to take today off.  To seal that deal, I texted my trusty friend Angela to run with me.  It's fail proof.

Mentally it's been a rough week.  Is the world coming to an end?  No. (Even if it was, I'd be signing "Glory Hallelujah".  Take me home Jesus....TAKE ME HOME!)  Are there worse problems out there?  Absolutely.  To me's been really rough.

I found out Monday evening that my cousin Dustin died.  This hits hard in a couple of particular ways.  Ways that I don't normally talk about, but it's my blog and I'm feeling very transparent so here it goes.  Although some of the details are a little sketchy we know that Dustin died of an overdose of drugs.  He was only 26 years old.  His mom also died this exact same way 24 years ago.  Her death was the first I can ever remember experiencing.  I was so young and it was so hard.  It changed my world, my family, my everything.

I don't even remember the last time I saw Dustin.  I want to say it was 1998 or so.  He turned into a juvenile delinquent and took off at some point, only to never return.  I am very "family is family" orientated, so it doesn't matter that it's been years since I've seen him.  I'm bonded to him, forever connected and full of memories of him growing up.  So this loss is hard for me.  I have thought of him from time to time.  I have tried to look for him on facebook, do internet searches, etc.  I'd ask my Grandma & his sister about him and all that anyone ever really knew was that he was in Florida.

For some reason, it took the state of Florida 5 days to track down my Grandma & notify her.  They are working to bring his body back, give him a proper burial and bury him next to his mother.  I'm only guessing that too much time will have lapsed to have a body viewing.  I know that sounds morbid, but I want to see his body.  I want that closure.  I want to bid him an earthly good bye.  I am a visual and memory driven person.  Looking an a closed casket will not be enough. 

This also gives me deep thought to my own struggles with suicide.  It's fairly not known unless I tell someone that I have some history in this area myself.  Yeah, I know "everyone" thinks about it from time to time.  But having tried on a few occasions and obviously failed (if I had to fail at something in life, thankfully it was this!) it brings a whole new perspective and aspect to the subject.  I've had great success in overcoming this struggle. At least in a literal sense.  I don't think it ever goes away mentally 100%.  Some have even suggested that it could be hereditary.  I don't know.  However facing the reality of it now with my cousin brings a lot of thought, hurt and more awareness to this subject.

My running has been very thought filled this week.  With all of this weighing heavily on my heart it changes how I run.  I will have to expand on that more in future posts.  I certainly have a lot to blog about with this subject.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Rain, rain....GO AWAY!

Of course, it's not raining NOW.  But it was not too long ago.  It was just a nail in my already almost shut coffin.  It has not been a good day.

I woke up late.  Late meaning, 5:15 a.m.  I can get away with this on Wednesday's because I have no class to teach.  It gives me more flexibility to do what I want.  There is a 6 a.m. running group that runs the Lake Storey trail.  I like running with the group.  They usually push me in my pace.  I REALLY need that right now.  However I am more & more aware that it's still very dark at 6:45 - 7 a.m.  Or to look at it from the other perspective, it's barely light out.  The Lake Storey trails are a little challenging.  It's surrounded by a lot of wooded areas.  Even when it's full daylight out you need to watch your step for rocks, sticks, STUPID ACORNS, and who knows what else.  With my leg giving me trouble I wasn't in the mood to push my luck by running in darkness.

I did still get up & go to the Y and hit the weights & did a little biking.  I had every intent to go out & run hills this afternoon.  Then it rained.  Before I even got to that point though my motivation was MIA.  I'm blah blah blah to the 100th degree.  I could continue to explain my mentality and thought process through the day.  But I think I'll spare you.  I'm really just having a tough week. Yeah, I pulled 4 miles yesterday and I likely will again tomorrow.  But it's not enough.

I saw a sign that said: you get what you give.  so give good.  Am I giving enough?  or good enough?  I don't think so.  And DON'T give me this "if I gave nearly as much as you do....".  Don't compare yourself to me.  I'm only comparing myself to me.  I'm capable of so much more.  I let too much get in my way and just give up too easily.

*siiighs*  yep, it's one of them days.  The rain has gone away for now.  The sun has even shone it's face a few times.  I will just move on.  Take tomorrow for what I can.  As long as my good days out weigh my bad days I'll be ok.  But it's a tough never ending battle.  No one ever said running was easy.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Interesting Information

I was clicking around my blog this morning, trying to change somethings up. I came across a few interesting facts. I probably can't explain how I found such information, I just came across it by clicking on anything & everything possible. I was exploring. It's the sure best way in figuring things out. I wouldn't say I'm a computer genius in any way (my husband is the one who minored in computer science in college), but I sure am computer smart. It's like being street start. I'm on here a lot and just get things figured out....doesn't mean I know what I'm doing half the time. Ha-ha.

Anyway...came across this bit of information or stats as it stated. I have had people from the following countries view my blog: US, Russia, Germany, Mexico, UK, Malaysia, Poland & Brazil. Now Captain Obvious knows why the US in on there. I do know people in Germany & Mexico. I have one lone friend in Brazil (HI KARI!!!!) But the other countries have me a little stumped. I admit though, I feel a little internationally known now. Ok, ok...I promise to not let it all go to my head. I'm sure those people stumbled across my blog by sheer mistake. It's not likely they were hunting for some world famous blogger. It's interesting though. And now that I know this little feature is there I might need to check it more often. Yes, I am a creeper....get over it. (See Suz, you were right on track this morning :) )

Had a cartoon sent to me. It made me bust up laughing of all my non-running friends. I have a long standing joke with a few that I will chase them with a plastic knife, if it means getting them to run. Even then they might just concede & let me stab them instead of running. One such person is my oldest off spring. I think she was switched at birth or something. I still love her & my friends even for all their non running habits.

Speaking of running (it is one of the main themes of my blog), I did run this a.m. Got my 4.25 miles in. Even though my ipod only clocked 4. I know better though. (I've been forced to use my old nano which is not nearly as accurate, but better than nothing). Me and my best friend ibuprofen headed out at 4:50 this a.m. Only because I washed some dishes was I not able to get out before 4:30. Still working on it. My run went better than I thought so I'm quite happy. We'll see what tomorrow brings.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Happy Columbus Day!!!!

Found this funny little cartoon on facebook.  It made me giggle.  Ain't that the truth, huh?

For the first time in forever my kids had school.  It's a little controversial in our town about this happening.  It's kind of a long story having to do with our teachers & their contract, etc. etc.  I very much love & support our teachers in our town.  I am friends with a lot of them.  However, I am seeing this day as another day that is getting us closer to getting out earlier in May or June.  It is suppose to be May next year.  I can't remember the last time we EVER got done with school in May.  EVER.  Including when I was in school.  So if we have to sacrifice this day, then so be it.  I don't care.  Make my kids go to school!  Get it done & over with.

Not what I meant to ramble on about.  Actually, I don't know what I want to ramble about today.  It's been a frustrating day.  Earlier I had an ear full to tell you.  I still do.  I just don't think I have the creative writing bend to make it sound all great & magical.  I think I'm too hard on myself when it comes to my writing.  A little of a perfectionist.  Me?  Perfect?  Haha, I'm the furthest thing from that.  Sorry, rabbit trail again.

So let me tell you where I am running wise.  I skipped today.  Had to teach a cardio class at 6 a.m.  Meant to go run this afternoon, but a certain Postal employee was not working today (yeah, that's right you didn't get any mail delivered today) and my day revolved around him.  So my afternoon run was nixed.  I will run per usual tomorrow morning.  I keep wanting to BE running at 4:30 a.m. but I fiddle around too much in the morning and can never seem to get going until 4:55 or 5.  (Slacker....I know!)  I'll try again tomorrow.  Getting an early start will allow me to run farther than 4 miles, plus I like to be done & back to the Y by 5:30 when it opens so I can squeeze in some weights before I have to teach at 6.  Having such a tight schedule keep me on the ball or failing miserably.  I'm often a combination of both.

My leg is still bothering me. I know exactly where the problem is, I just don't know why it's all flared up &  mad at me.  What did I ever do to my poor little body?  Oh, wait...don't answer that.  Ok, what have I done recently?  I've been good.  Just going for 4 - 7 miles run 4 - 5 days week.  That's all!  Yes, I have an innocent look on my face right now with a big ? looming above my head.

We'll see how my run goes tomorrow.  I want a good long run to clear my head.  Get my thoughts together to tell you what I want.  And to have some good prayer time with my Lord.  That is when I really enjoy my runs, when I accomplish those things within a run.  When I just get to be myself : )

Thursday, October 6, 2011


You know the drill by now.....priorities. It has been an excellent week of getting stuff done. I DID think of blogging EVERY single day. Everyday I thought of several things to blog about. Many of them were very good.

For one there was....
and then there was.......
OH and don't forget....

and there you have it a week full of blog posts. But now, eh....what was I gonna blog about?!?!?

I don't know. If it's something that is really "important" it will re-surface again and I will have the time to actually blog about it.

My three favorite blogs I read (no offense to any others) didn't blog this week either. Well, one finally did today. The others still have me checking. So maybe in some cosmic way we were all in this non blogging streak and not even realizing it. Or we just didn't take time to blog. Hmmm, it happens.

I thought I'd share some pictures of our area. I want to make my numero uno fav blogger & secret sister in law so jealous that she will want to come visit me. The pictures are just the tip of the iceberg as to how beautiful & magnificent it gets here.

Have a great weekend. I'm resting because I really need it. My leg is bordering on injured. Yikes. I was suppose to expand on that under my blog post titled "Rut R-oh". I also tell you I've had my highest mileage last week than I have in, I don't know how long, but it's been a long time.

We'll see what great blogness I bring you next week. Enjoy the pics!