Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Sore, but happy

My half-marathon is over, and I am sitting at home enjoying the last bit of my night off.

We packed up the kids and headed out Saturday morning and made the seven-hour drive to Lake Tahoe. We had to pick up our race information at a casino conference center. I walked with R in a front pack, and T pushed Q in the stroller as we made our way through the smoky casino by slot machines and roulette tables. It was kind of strange.

We have a friend in Lake Tahoe whose dad owns a resort. She got us a room in a motel they had recently bought, and it was an interesting set up. It was old with peeling paint and an ancient TV. There was a king bed and a cramped bathroom, but a giant hot tub. It seriously could fit eight people. I was really looking forward to a nice soak after my run, so it was fine with me. The lack of heat and even a phone was a little strange, but we're not too picky.

Saturday morning, we were out the door early. Our plan was to have T run the 5K, take the kids, and then I would catch the shuttle for the half. Unfortunately, it was a very long drive to the start of the 5K, and we couldn't find it. We eventually caught up to the runners, and T joined them about a half mile in.

I parked the car in this makeshift lot among tall pine trees and then dragged the kids to the shuttle stop. The bus was late, thankfully, because T had to run from the finish to meet us. He made up the half mile he missed in the beginning. I got on the bus and was off to the start.

I have run four marathons, one half marathon, and many 10-milers, 10Ks, and 5Ks, but this race was hard. First of all, it's in the mountains so the altitude was high to begin with. Then, about three miles in, it got higher. We had a one-and-a-half mile climb that took us up 500 feet to almost 7000'. The air was thin up there! I have never seen so many people walking in a race. I was running for most of the "Hill from Hell" as it was aptly described, but I also gave in to walking before I reached the top. There were a few more killer hills that reduced me to walking and also some crazy downhills. It was just hard. But, I finished strong, though in a pretty slow time of 2:19:22. I was just glad I wasn't doing the marathon. That would have been excruciating.

As I got close to the finish line, I saw T with the boys. Baby R was wailing. I had to finish, grab my medal and a bottle of water, and sit down on the beach to nurse him. Craziness.

T and I spent some time in the giant hot tub, and then enjoyed a nice dinner with out friend. She ran the half as well.

T, Q, and I spent the night in the king bed, while Baby R slept on a blanket on the ground. Q kept thrashing around, waking up, and kicking us, until T moved to the roll-out bed. I could never do that co-sleeping thing. You'd never get any sleep!

We set out very early Monday morning. The boys were relatively good, though had a few screaming fits that actually made my ears hurt.

It felt good to run a race again. I had to stifle my perfectionist inclination to feel like I should have run the full marathon, or should have run faster, and just be happy to run.


Thursday, September 25, 2008

Job woes, cont.

So, I am puttering along in my job still. I am still fairly miserable and itching to leave. The more I hear about the horrific economy though, the more I want to hang on to my job with both hands.

I start to stress about my job not long after I wake up. I carry around this constant anxious feeling. Q has been especially trying lately as well, so I just feel utterly frazzled most of my day. This morning he had two meltdowns and both times I struggled to put him in his room for a time out. I was trying to put up his baby gate as he pushed against it. I kept pushing him back so I could lock it into place. It was just awful. The smallest thing, like the wrong cup for his juice, just sends him into a screaming fit. T and I are really struggling with it.

I get ready for work while feeling constantly frustrated and torn as R needs to nurse and Q is wailing about his lost toy or whatever latest crisis. I am generally five to ten minutes late as I pile my stuff into the car and race off to an appointment or work.

When I finally pull into the work parking lot, I start to get a sinking feeling. Then as I walk up the stairs to my desk, the familiar anxiety starts bubbling up. I just feel constantly on edge. I hate that.

I finally feel better after I return from dinner break and most everyone has gone home for the day. Then it is nice and quiet, and I have a lot more control.

During the day, I just completely disagree with the choices made and feel disrespected and unappreciated. It is not a good feeling.

I just want to be happy in the place I spend more than 40 hours a week. Especially since home is hectic now too. The only place I get some peace is in the car alone.


Monday, September 22, 2008

Ready to run

I am running a half marathon in six days, and I think I am ready. I started out training for a marathon, but the training was too time-consuming and was basically making me miserable. I have run four before, but this time around it was just two much with two little people, T's new job schedule, and my ongoing pelvic issues. So, a half marathon it is. It is still a challenge and something to work toward without being way out of my league right now.

The problem is, I have been slacking a bit in the training. I was determined this weekend to have a nice, long run, and I succeeded. I ran 10.6 miles yesterday and felt great the entire way. It was a cool, beautiful evening, and I saw seven deer. My pelvis ached all night, but I sure felt great having that run under my belt. I can certainly do 2.5 miles more this weekend in Lake Tahoe. The elevation is a different story, but I'm just not worrying about that right now.


I am within about three pounds of my pre-pregnancy weight. I am very happy about that.


Saturday, September 20, 2008

Tasmanian devil child

Here are just a few of the antics of my oldest son this week:

*Wore a bike helmet to Target and carried two flags as he strutted around the aisles. (see above)
*Stole my comb and while I was in the shower, and then later when I needed with wet, snarled hair, he answered, "Comb, all gone!" Couldn't find the damn thing all day.
*Locked himself in the bathroom. I tried to calm him and get him to let go of the knob so I could unlock it. (Thankfully I had the key). I got him out and expected him to be relieved. He just laughed and said, "Bye, bye mama," and locked it once again. Apparently, he also knows how to unlock it.
*Greeted me in the bedroom as I was getting ready holding the end of a roll of toilet paper. A line of white was streaming behind him attached to the rest of the roll in the bathroom down the hall.
*Escaped from behind his baby gate in the morning and made his way downstairs. Among his activities before I woke up: depositing a packet of string cheese on the TV stand, dumping the dog food, letting the indoor cats outside.

Sometimes you have to laugh or you'll cry.


Thursday, September 18, 2008

Single mom again

T is finally back home after a few days of traveling for work. It is just constant motion when he is gone. From the early morning hours when R cries for the first time to 1:00 or 2:00 a.m. when I go to sleep. Sometimes I get tired of being tired. I could nap at any moment. I think about sleeping on the weekends during the week and then squeeze in as many naps as possible on Saturday and Sunday. It's not a good way to live. As I get more and more frustrated with my current job, an 8:00 - 5:00 job looks better and better.


The owner of the dachshund we dog-sat baked us a peach pie. Yum! I had two pieces for breakfast.


Monday, September 15, 2008

Off on the wrong foot

I had a doctor's appointment Friday morning at 9:30. Q was with his dad doing doing an interview for a charity function. Without my three-foot tall alarm clock, I overslept. I woke up at 9:17, about ten minutes after I should have left.

I had that brief moment in which I froze and wished I could close my eyes and wake up again at 8:30. But alas, I could not turn back time. I popped a stick of gun in my mouth, rubbed the smudged eyeliner from under my eyes, strapped R into his car seat and stumbled out to the car. I had only woken up about three minutes before and still felt half asleep. When I saw police lights in my rear-view mirror, I was wide awake. I wasn't even speeding, which I have a slight problem with. I had not yet however put on my seat belt, and my side back brake light was broken. Bummer. I got two tickets and then was really late for my appointment. The cop was very nice (except for giving me two tickets) and was riding a motorcycle. I wished Q was with me, because he would have loved that!


So, it was a bit of a stressful end to the week and a rough week overall. I have had a few more struggles and conflicts at work and am still feeling fairly unhappy and frustrated there. I decided I needed a little stress relief. Saturday morning, I went for a massage and body treatment. It was two hours of heaven. It was maybe the best one I have ever gotten. I kept falling asleep during it. I wished after she finished she would have just left me there so I could nap. It was just what I needed.

Here's hoping this weekend bring fewer stressful moments and no traffic tickets!


Friday, September 12, 2008

My masochism

I think I have a bit of a masochistic streak. I am barely keeping my head above water with two (bad) kids and a full-time job, but I have decided to experiment with some Masters classes. I am not sure if I am ready to fully commit, but I am taking a class in Media Management and Leadership online this semester through my Alma mater. If all goes well, I will apply for the program after I complete that class. If I fail miserably, I'll say, Oh well, screw that, I didn't want to do it anyway.

The class is going well so far. I enjoy it and feel that familiar energy and enthusiasm from learning. I also feel that old stress and deadline pressure from those college days. This morning I was frantically trying to read and finish a case study to email it to my instructor as Q squealed and pulled on my pajamas.

The things I am learning I am already putting to use at work. I have had a few more conflicts at work this week, and I have been trying to use my new techniques for constructive confrontation. Of course, it is a bit easier when you are contemplating it as part of a hypothetical discussion instead of in the heat of the moment, but it is giving me some guidance.

I'm just ready for a nice juicy weekend.


Tuesday, September 9, 2008

So much barking

We are dog-sitting the dachshund on the right this week. She barks a lot. A LOT. I hope I don't strangle her before the week is through. What is it about barking that is so irritating? This morning between barking, fussing, and crying, I wanted to scratch my ear drums out.


T's sisters left today and yesterday. It is so wonderful to see your children with other people who love them. It really makes you appreciate what you helped bring into this world.


Friday, September 5, 2008


We have a lot of beings in our house right now. Of course, there is the standard crowd, hubby T and I, little Q and baby R, two cats, and a dachshund named Ruby. Added to the mix this weekend are T's two sisters L and K, and a friend's dachshund we are dog-sitting for a week. That brings a grand total of ten beings!

The children are always tiny wild people, and the yapping wiener dogs are making for even more of a madhouse. As soon as the new dog arrived, I ushered both dachshunds outside. There they barked, yipped, and nipped each other and chased after grimy, soggy tennis balls.

It could be a long weekend.


It was a long week. It was one of those weeks that feels more like three weeks. It's like some sort of time warp lengthened the week considerably. T was out of town for three days on business. While he was gone, I embarked on a new project. I pitched the idea because I thought it was a good thing to do, and then I set off to do it all by myself. I even shot all the video even though I haven't done that in years. I had a few technical glitches that made the video dark and really, really pissed me off. But, I was able to salvage it and use some other resources to make it look pretty decent. This extra project though forced me to work a 12 hour day one of the days T was gone. It was long and exhausting.

I was proud when it aired today though. I can certainly have my lazy moments, but I am generally willing to work extremely hard when I think the project warrants it. I am just about physically incapable of half-assing projects, almost to a fault.

I have a few more projects in the pipeline, and I should be better at shooting the video for them now that I have learned from my mistakes. These projects are making me feel a lot more energized about work after a discouraging few weeks.


Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Favorite kind of weekend

It was one of those weekends with nothing on the calendar. I love that. We sort of just went with the flow. On Saturday, we both slept in. We laid around the house, reading and being lazy. In the evening, we decided to get Greek food and go for a long walk. We ran into some friends and chatted while Q and their son fed ducks.

On Sunday, more laziness with one exception. I did my eight-mile run. Less than a month now until my half-marathon, and I think I will be ready. We ran some errands and then headed out for Mexican. I got a margarita as big as my head and gorged myself on chips and salsa. It doesn't get any better than that.

This Labor Day, I am working unfortunately and T is home with the boys. He heads out of town for three days starting tomorrow and will repeat the trip next week. That means some long days for MM.

I hope another lazy weekend is in the near future.