Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Happy Birthday Baby

19 years ago today I became a mom for the first time. As I write this , I was struggling through the last stages of labour and delivery, convinced that somehow they lied to me in pre-natal class because I did not remember them mentioning anything about PAIN.

And then she arrived. And as the doctor held her up, I was sure she was a boy (lack of sleep + the aforementioned PAIN + the position she was held in + the umbilical cord looking somewhat male - like = boy) And then I clued into my husband saying "It's a girl, Jan, it's a girl" and my heart exploded.

See, I really wanted a girl. But all the indicators were boy. The pre-natal heart rate, my shape, all the women on my case-load (I was in social services at the time) said "You're going to have a boy". Really, I was just so happy to be having a baby, that I said it didn't matter. And I am quite sure that it would not have, once s/he had appeared. But I REALLY wanted a girl in my heart of hearts.

And she was a lovely baby (I mean, once she got over that crying thing). She has never been what I would call a girly-girl - she has a normal (read not obsessive) like of feminine things, but she has always preferred books to fashion magazines (in fact, I don't think she has ever read one. A fashion magazine, I mean. But I can't be sure.) She has never, to my knowledge angsted about weight or looks (at least in the open and to my face). I think she is beautiful. And she is smart. And she uses her brains to get by in the world, not her looks. Which is great, because looks can be fleeting, but brains are forever. She is independent thinking, has a great (if somewhat sarcastic) sense of humour (that comes from her dad) and is starting to find her way in the world of grown-up. She is a great student and a wonderful writer. She loves to read (did I mention that already?), play the piano,cook, fence and even likes to knit. She has made good choices to this point, and I believe that she will continue to do so. She has a wonderful soul. She is a good sister (even if she does torment her brothers on occasion) and the best daughter one could ask for.

So happy birthday baby girl. And I am so pleased and proud that the armful of potential that we were handed on August 23, 1992 has turned out to be such a delight.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Not running

I have not run in two weeks. I had a cyst removed from my toe that necessitated two weeks off while it healed (actually still healing).

I can't believe how much I miss it.

Some of it is the forced inactivity - while I can ride my bike - the shoe hurts the top of my foot after about 10 minutes. So I am limited to those activities that I can do in my bare feet - like core class or yoga.

And the only reason I do those are to make me a better runner.

Trying to be patient while your body heals is really tough. And I know that mine is a very small problem - others have much more chronic pain and have to put up with a lot more enforced inactivity than two weeks. But it's my balancing force, my go-to place when I am stressed or when I feel the need to challenge myself. It's the friendships and my sense of community. But I could rip the stitches and put myself out for longer than just two weeks. So I am trying to be good.

I ran across this while I was blog surfing this morning - and it really resonated with me. (This came from the blog 3x3x365.)

"It reminded me of listening to biochemist Covert Bailey
speak about how we get fit.
It’s in the repair. It’s when we crawl in a hole.

Here’s an over simplistic explanation.

When we’re out there running, our bodies
are way too busy to think about getting fit.
It’s an all hands on deck freak out when you decide
to start putting one foot in front of the other.
It’s pretty much all your body can do to keep up
with your panting and cursing while on a run.
Despite their best effort, muscles start to break down.
Stuff gets all out of sorts. It’s pandemonium.

When it’s over, and you’re tired, and you want to
crawl into a hole, and you finally settle down,
there’s a foreman somewhere in your center
who blows a whistle and gathers the troops and holds a meeting.
He’s talking to every muscle, organ, and cell.


And so your body gets ready for the next time you lace up your shoes.
All those tears get fixed up, and reinforced, and everything
gets put back together even better than it was before.
That’s when you’re getting fit. It’s in the repair.
The rest. On the crawl in a hole days.

So don’t be so hard on yourself.
I imagine this is true for more things than running."

The idea that when you rest, then you heal is something we need to remind ourselves of (runners and non-runners alike)on a regular basis. Then you can go back out and do it all again - but this time, a little stronger.

I like that.

So I have been in a hole for the last two weeks. I am chomping at the bit to crawl back out there.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

What I learned on my summer vacation (AKA July wrap-up)

So I spent most of July in Ontario on vacation. It was truly a grand place to be - hot and steamy the way I have not experienced summer in a few years. Herein is the summary of what I learned while away.....

1. Long runs are easier with friends (or as one of my running buddies put it "Less hard").

2. Always take the time to put in your contacts before any run. No matter how short it is.

3. Otherwise, you spend too much time waiting for doctors to see you.

4. The bad news? - one badly broken baby finger. And several facial scars. And one pair of badly scrunched (expensive) sunglasses.

Note the yellowish hue. And if the tape came off? That baby finger would be slipping behind the 3rd finger. Not pretty.

5. The good news? Still looking for the upside.....

6. We visited the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In Cleveland, Ohio.

7. As one child said "Not many people are going to be impressed when I tell them where I went on my summer vacation...."(I am paraphrasing.)(Slightly.)

7.Apparently women rock stars are noted for what they wore. Male rock stars are noted for what they did. It's probably the only time in history that Britney Spears will be in the same room as Joni Mitchell and Carole King.

8. Just as there are process knitters (those who knit for the joy of knitting) and product knitters (those who knit for the joy of the finished product), so too are there process car trips (trips where you take the side road and stop and explore) and product car trips (the destination IS the point).

9. I like process car trips. I am married to a man who seems to like product car trips. It makes for interesting road trips.

10. In his defence, I think the boys like product car trips. Not entirely sure it would be a happy trip if the parents were process and the boys were not.....

11. I did not visit ANY yarn stores. I did try once. It was closed.

12. Despite the lack of yarn store visits and the rather painful baby finger, I got a sweater and a pair of socks knit.

13. The U2 concert was FRABULOUS. Worth every penny (and there were many) that we paid for it.

14. My husband is correct. Experiences matter more than stuff (which is why I think he should like process car trips more....)

15. We visited the site of our first date.

16. Our sons did not appear to be that impressed in ancient history.

17. Finally - if you are visiting Ontario during what seems to be a record-breaking heat wave of proportions not seen in years (if ever)?

18. It's nice to be here......