Saturday, May 29, 2010

Still Truckin'

* So earlier this week I was experiencing tons of prelabor contractions and felt downright awful. With that along with knowing I'm dilating and effacing, I was starting to worry #2 was going to come way earlier than I thought. However, on Wednesday morning I got out of bed and looked down at my belly and noticed it had changed. #2 dropped! Since then, although I feel a lot more low pressure and discomfort, I generally feel much better. The contractions have lightened up a lot and I have run twice and felt pretty good.

Speaking of running, I have more or less fallen off a cliff and am now really waddling when I run. I am lucky to run 10:00 pace anymore. While I don't need walk breaks necessarily, I've been forcing myself to take one every mile or so since it's been pretty hot out.

On Friday I ran with my buddies JenC and Evie and sons. Everything was going great and I felt really good despite the 80 degrees. We were cruising for 4 miles, but right around 3.5 I felt a super weird feeling low low down in my belly. #2 was moving around and pushing on something weird. I leaned over on the BOB and told my friends I needed to stop. I tried to explain it wasn't a big deal, just uncomfortable. I'm sure it looked like I was going into labor or something, but it wasn't contractions or cramping at all, just baby movements on a weird spot. We walked and she moved off the nerve or whatever she was on within a couple of minutes and I was fine. I always feel like I must seem like a crazy freak to still run when stuff like that happens, but really I felt great otherwise so I'll keep on trucking while I can!

I'm not sure I have the will to run by myself anymore, though. I'm up for a slow 3-4 miler any time. Just let me know if you'll be in the neighborhood and let's meet up!

* While I am up close to 40 lbs now, this is not me.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Mo' Money

Y'all are going to think I'm crazy! I was just talking to mrp about the dreaded money topic and I completely had a revelation. All this time I was feeling so cornered by the situation of being a stay-at-home mom bringing in no income. I so longed for the days of my financial "independence."

But in talking with mrp I realized that this independence was really just that I made enough money that I could hide my non-optimal money management skills (to be kind). It's not quitting my job and becoming a SAHM that is forcing me to change. It's being a mom and a partner that requires me to change and become more financially accountable. It also doesn't necessarily mean that I need to spend even less than I already do. It means I need to be open and honest with myself about money and in turn open and honest with mrp about it and quit being all weirdly emotional about it and worrying that I'm a bad person for not being able to meet a draconian budget.

I don't even know if this will make sense to anyone else, but this is a huge revelation for me. I am excited to remove the emotions out of money management and learn how to be a responsible member of a partnership. Can anyone recommend any good books on money management, particularly written for women?

Less Than 2 Months!

I had my last bi-weekly midwife appointment yesterday. I thought I had one more to go, but because I've been having tons of Braxton-Hicks contractions she decided to do an internal check to see what's going on in there. She discovered I'm 1.5 cm dilated and ~20% effaced. While this by no means means labor is imminent, it is enough progress at 35 weeks that she feels I need to start showing up weekly now to monitor how things are going.

After the exam, I felt crampy and yucky. I also have a low-grade cold, so I'm sure that's not helping. By the late afternoon I felt better and took peanut to the park. It was over 80 and sunny so I figured I'd walk\run three miles at best. I started out running and felt pretty good actually. I made it to about .5 miles and all of a sudden I had a stabby pain in my left side. It felt like round ligament pain, which I sometimes get and which usually goes away in a minute or so. This pain just got worse and worse even as I walked and then even as I stood still. UGH. I tried to rest and lean on the BOB but we were in a wooded section of the path and mosquitos quickly saw an opportunity to sneak in their dinner. Before they could do too much damage I started moving us out of there, but I have to say that did not feel good at all! I shuffled us about .25 miles back to a bench and sat their like an old man waiting for my uterus to calm down. I didn't get much relaxing in there since the mosquitos were still out, but it was enough that I was able to make it back to the parking lot.

I didn't want to go right home because peanut would want to stay outside and run around while we waited for mrp to come home. I couldn't chase after him for 40 minutes in the heat so I shuffled us to the swings. At least then I could sit down and peanut would be stuck in the swing! I couldn't wait to be done and go home and hand peanut off to mrp so I could sit. I made it and I did finally sit and that was the only thing that made me feel better.

After peanut's bedtime I felt fine, but tired. I think the exam just p.o.'d my uterus and I exacerbated it by trying to run (in the heat no less--duh!) I'll probably try again today, but maybe start my running around the parking lot a couple of times so I won't have to do the pathetic shuffle back to my car if it's not going well. Or maybe I'll just stick with walking. We'll see.

The good news is that in all likelihood I should have this baby in about 3.5 weeks (I had peanut at 39 weeks) and then if all goes well from there be running again 4 weeks later (I was able to do that last time even after an insane labor). That means less than 2 months until I can really run again. Woo! I am so excited!!! I can't wait to join my friends for track workouts and hit the trails on the weekends and do tempo runs on the rolling road by my in-law's house. And in between I get to put in miles with the double BOB. That scares me, but at the same time the single BOB used to scare me too, so I know I'll adjust. It is going to take a bit more hustle to get my runs in with two kids, but it'll be so so so worth it!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Rain Don't Mean a Thing

Yesterday I met some of my favorite running buddies for a few miles and a pot-luck brunch at the park. I woke up to pouring rain and figured no one would show up, but much to my surprise my friends are troopers! Four of us got in four miles in the rain: AR, CV, Evie and me. When we were finished, NC and E joined us for food. Great way to salvage a rainy morning!

I was a little surprised though, that I was only up for 4 miles. It wasn't that long ago I was running 8-10 once a week. The last few weeks my "long" run has been down to 6, but that was very doable. Yesterday, 4 was it. I was done. Even with great company and a very easy pace. Hmmm.

It was nice to have the company of my old once a week running partner Evie though. Almost all last year, Evie and I met up once a week to run at the local park. Then she got pregnant. Then I got pregnant. I think we only ran once or twice while both pregnant. Either she struggled with an injury or I struggled with morning sickness and then the winter came. With all of that our runs were history. She had her son, ND about a month ago and she's back up and running. My running is on the way out so we were perfect running partners once again. Hooray! I am looking forward to many more runs together this summer and beyond! And soon we can add in playdates!

But all four of us were perfect together really. AR just ran her stellar 3:06 at the Cleveland Marathon on Sunday and the removal of her gall bladder on Monday (crazy!) and CV is recovering from a very nasty hamstring injury so none of us were at our prime to say the least. Even the rain was perfect. It felt really good, breaking up the warm muggy air.

After our little party in the park, E came home with me to hang out since her hubby was out of town and we don't get to hang out much these days. She ended up spending all day playing with peanut and yapping with me about this and that. She helped me straighten up the house. She watched peanut while I peed a million times and mrp transplanted his tomatoes. She even stayed for my gourmet dinner of Trader Joe's pizzas and salad, finally sharing a Hoe Gaarden with mrp that they had been planning since her 3:05 pr in Columbus last fall.

A very nice day, indeed.

Today the weather is beautiful: sunny and 70's. I feel like poo. I was getting dressed to head out for a few miles, but hit the bed half way through. I was just too tired. I thought of something Evie told me a while back. In a few months when we are in the thick of training there will come a time when we'll really wish we could take a day off. That day off will serve me better today. So, once peanut is up from his nap we'll go for a walk in the park instead and I'll take a rain check for that run, cashing it in in a few months when I'm starting to fit back in my clothes and the miles are starting to flow like they used to.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Still Running and Surprise! Peanut had a Gross Disease and I Didn't Even Know It!

35 weeks tomorrow and still chugging along. I was downtown for a meeting with a student yesterday a.m., so I took the opportunity to meet my old co-worker and friend ML for a run. It was fun to catch up on the ol' office happenings, while I managed to keep up with a 25 year old guy pretty easily. Sure, sure, he was holding way back and working very hard not to two-step me the whole way, but we can just ignore that part!

It's funny. I used to run that same route almost every day when I was pregnant last time and this time I ran it faster and more effortlessly than at almost any point during my last pregnancy. I've gained considerably less weight at this point than I did last pregnancy, so maybe that's it. Maybe I am less cautious and just run. I have no idea. But I like it!

That's not to say that running is easy right now. My hips feel all loosey-goosey these past couple of weeks and my shoes are ancient and not helping. I even had a little it band issue on Tuesday, but I found an older pair of shoes that had a few miles left in them and wore those yesterday and I felt much better. I was worried it was my bod caving in, but it was the shoes. Phew! I might almost make it to the end this time! I might only be running 2-3 miles at a pop, but who cares. I am still enjoying it.

Oh. And a nap update--what you've all been waiting for! Last I left you with this story, it seemed like peanut might be making the one-nap switch. Well, it turns out he wasn't teething a month or so ago when he was all fussy and weird and his sleep schedule starting getting all crazy. Turns out that he had hand, foot and mouth disease. Poor guy! It was so hard to tell because he had a fever on and off for a week, drooled a ton, had diaper blow-outs, kept his fingers in his mouth, and generally acted like he was teething. He never had a fever with teething before, but I figured maybe the 2-yr molars were particularly awful.

And around the same time I noticed peanut walking funny and then blisters on his big toes. I just figured I was a jerk and didn't realize his shoes were getting too small, so I bought him new shoes and he seemed better. And then we noticed his fingers weirdly peeling and some funny dots on them, but I figured it was from sucking on them when he was teething.

It was three weeks since he first started acting funny and he still had the dots on his hand and I also noticed them on his butt and upper legs. I asked the pediatrician about them at his 18 month appointment and she helped me put two and two together. I have to say I am so relieved I didn't know what he had when he had it because I would have felt awful!! Anyway, the rash has since cleared up.

In the meantime, peanut's sleep schedule was thrown off. He was waking up super early and not napping so well. Then he started refusing naps for a while there. But since the HFM cleared up he's back to sleeping from 7:00-7:00 at night and taking two naps from 1:15 - 2:00 at a pop! I am so happy to have my good sleeper back! It makes a huge difference in his mood and mine! I am having a harder time keeping up my energy without some serious rest time later in the day, so a nice long afternoon nap helps get me through.

Tomorrow a few friends are heading up to the park with me to run and brunch. My mom might even come. Looking very forward to it! It's going to be a good weekend. I can feel it!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Premaster

*









It's my birthday! Sorry, I must have been a bad girl because whoa does the weather suck today! It's chilly and POURING. Oops. Next year I'll behave and get us some sunshine and 72, promise!

This is my first age group bump since I started seriously running. 35-39 sounds kind of old doesn't it? Oh well. At least it's not as competitive as my old one (well at least until everyone catches up to me in a couple of years!)

Last year I had such a sucky birthday. I had just quit my job and my whole sense of self was lost somewhere. I was still adjusting to being a mom and then adjusting to be a stay-at-home mom and everything just seemed so out of whack for me. It was tough.

But in this past year, I've really learned a lot about myself. I've found some areas that need improving:

- house cleaning
- money managing
- time managing

I've discovered things I'm really good at:

- raising a kid
- teaching
- adjusting to life changes

The changes were aplenty last year and I am definitely not settled quite yet. Mainly, I have no idea what I want to do with myself professionally. I don't think I want to start my own practice for a variety of reasons. I think I'd like to stay as current and bring in a little bit of cash teaching and doing the odd contract job until the kids are settled in school (preschool or otherwise). After that, if I have to speculate I'd say I'll go back full-time but with some schedule flexibility. Hopefully the economy will improve enough in this time that I'll be able to negotiate some good terms for myself. We shall see! I'm open-minded though. Anything can happen between now and then!

I am also really enjoying helping a few people reach their running goals. Helping people achieve their running potential is incredibly rewarding to me! I'd like to parlay this into a business. I don't think I'll ever be a full-time coach, but I think after achieving some success with my current trainees I will launch a small coaching business and see where it takes me.

I also have a running website idea that I've been mulling over for more than a year. One of my goals for this year is to get this website and my coaching business up and running (oops. Unintentional, I swear!) before I start teaching again in January.

Other than that, #2 should be arriving in a little over a month! I can't believe it's so close already. After her arrival, I'll have a couple of weeks of nothing until mrp and I start heading to the market on Saturdays! For those of you who don't know, mrp has a side business growing and selling organic produce. You can see his blog about it here. It's a lot of work, but it's really fun and rewarding. I handle most of the marketing aspect of it and mrp does all the labor and techy stuff. We make a good team. It's going to be a busy summer, but a good one. Hopefully, the summer will end with a solid training comeback on my part. Oh, I cannot wait to get back up and really running! CANNOT WAIT!

So, that's this year's birthday report. Not nearly as exciting as a race report, but those will be back in the fall. Oh yes they will!

* Here's a little birthday bump comparison. The first photo (hair down) was taken on Sunday at 34w1d pregnant with #2. The second photo (pony tail) was taken on Oct. 25, 2008 when I was 34w6d pregnant with peanut.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Believe!

Showing up to a race when you're not racing is like showing up to a bar when you're not drinking. When you're the only one not drinking, the slurred speech, loud voices and manufactured confidence at the bar are painfully obvious. Similarly, at a race the game faces, focus and nerves are painfully obvious. That being said, I much prefer the race to the bar! Much less desperation in the air!

At the same time, showing up to a race as coach rather than an athlete is also a particular experience. Yesterday was the big day: the Cleveland Marathon, Half and 10k. I've been preparing my sister for this day for many weeks and finally there we were in surprisingly sparkly downtown Cleveland heading to the start. Once there we held hands as we navigated the sea of runners until we found the appropriate pace group. I saw the pacer and because we only had a minute to spare, quickly said, "this is my sister, Miss A and she is to stay with the 4:15 pace group until 22 miles. Then and only then may she run faster!" Of course, she was allowed to run slower, but that fact had already been long established and we weren't going to talk about that possibility on the starting line--bad mojo.

I decided to just stay with them and trot out through the start until I had a clear exit from the crowd. While we waited there and "Cleveland Rocks" blared from the sound system and I took a couple photos of my nervous trainee I felt so immensely proud of the moment. We had come a long long way. Sure, we still had 26.2 miles to go, but just being there was a victory in its own right.

The horn sounded and some people way up ahead were off, but we had some time to stand, then walk, then trot and then we were jogging. I slapped her some 5's and made my exit when I had the chance. "See you at mile 12!" This was her race.

I had some time to kill. I stood there on the edge of the course for a few minutes soaking it in. It was a perfect morning for a race. It was cool, but there was sun. It felt good. Really good. Something was in the air. I wandered over to a hotel and found some coffee. Then I went out and watched the 10k start, yelling for E as she passed.

Last year, very few decent Ohio runners showed up so even though I ran a shitastic race I was in the $$. This year, I was hoping the same thing would happen for E, but no such luck. In front of E were about 7 of Ohio's fastest women. Oh well. But who wouldn't rather have a kickass race than a few bucks. As E later said, the race performance lasts a lifetime while the money is gone in a blink of the eye. True dat.

As I alluded oh so eloquently above, I ran the 10k last year and had one of my more pathetic races. I remember being miserable when I came to the last hill. I decided that is where I needed to cheer. Last year it was Stupid Hill. Today it would be Happy Hill. I found a spot under a tree and laid out my Boston shirt to sit on as I sipped my coffee and watched a train pass by. I was all alone and it was nice. As the minutes moved to a reasonable end to an elite 10k race, a few more people came down. That was nice too. I got up and walked over to the edge of the road to take my cheering place. While there I met a nice family who were waiting for their pregnant daughter\wife to run by. The mother in particular, was worried about the effect of running on her pregnancy. I think I helped her feel a little better about that.

The male leaders started trickling past. Fast. fast. super fast! Yikes! And then the women started coming. Whoa! They came in 30-60 second waves. One, two, three, four and five, six. I saw the last Ohio ringer chick go by and before she was even up the hill I saw E! Holy!!! Whoa! AWESOME! I was SOOOOO FREAKING EXCITED! Finally! The breakthrough. The race I knew she had in her. It was there. On this perfect morning the stars aligned and she looked fierce, y'all!

I am not the best cheerer, but I let out whoops and wails and probably acted a complete fool! I didn't know the exact time, but I knew it had to be well within her A goal of sub-38. WOW! I saw one more friend behind E (E wasn't quite up the hill when friend 2 came in sight, but I waited to yell for friend 2 long enough that it wouldn't freak out E! She had nothing to worry about--big enough gap for sure, but didn't want her to worry there was someone coming for her).

After friend 2 was on her way up the hill I ran myself up it and to the finish area. The clock still said 39:xx by the time I got up there so I knew E had herself one fantastic race. I walked through the finish area and didn't see her, so I called her and left a vm just in case I didn't get to see her the rest of the day and then started over to mile 12. On my way, E called back and luckily she was headed the same way, so we got to do a celebration walk along the freeway as we cheered for friends. 37:36! This is the same woman that I had to convince she could run sub-20 in a 5k just 2 years ago! See. I was right. (of course!)

Whoa. This might be a really long post.

E and I waited to see our friend NC who was running her first full. We screamed at her as she ran by just a bit ahead of the 3:00 pace group. Sweet! I also saw my friend Carmen running her first half-marathon back after her battle with cancer looking strong and having fun. Extra sweet!

E needed to go all the way to 10 and being you know, 8.5 months pregnant I just couldn't risk overdoing it so I stayed around mile 12 waiting for my sister. I saw lots of friends and enjoyed hearing others cheer for their friends and loved ones.

Finally I saw the 4:15 group and my sister was a little ahead--not so much that I needed to yell at her though. I hopped in and we chatted. She was doing perfectly. The 9:40 pace was still feeling super easy and she felt like she was holding back. She was having fun and thoroughly enjoying the company of her pacers and fellow-pacees. Yes! About a half mile later I ran up ahead to where our mom was supposed to be waiting. I found her and told her my sister was coming and my mom shook her cowbell with abandon! I dropped off my bag of stuff with mom too and then headed back to the course with my sister. I proudly watched her expertly navigate a water stop--seriously, she is one talented drinker on the run! And then went over our plan one last time before exiting stage mile 13.

The plan was to stay with the 4:15 pace group no matter what until at least mile 22. She could fall back if she felt bad, but under no circumstances was she to run faster. Miles 15-22 are pretty desolate on the course and also always tough in a marathon, especially for first timers. What once felt easy starts feeling difficult. It can get lonely and doubts can really set in. These are the miles that must be babied and planned for and respected. I was hoping the pace group would help her not feel so lonely and doubtful during this time and this hope was reinforced by her experience up to mile 13. I was still feeling that something in the air!

I needed to meet my mom a few blocks up before bolting to mile 23 (about 2 miles away). I had several good friends competitively running the marathon and I really wanted to cheer for them and give them position info if helpful. I knew I had a very tight time frame to run to that part of the course. I finally found my mom and grabbed my phone and my water and took off running all pregnant through the semi-hood. I was a little worried about that aspect of it, but it turned out fine. There were enough other like-minded (though not like-bodied) people doing the same so I wasn't the only running fool in the hood.

I have to say it was the longest 2 miles of my life. I so wanted to hustle, but I so don't have much hustle right now. The blocks just putzed by (or maybe I putzed by the blocks). But I finally made it and saw a woman who was very competitive with my friend NC, just as I arrived. Based on the mile 23 clock, this woman was on pace for about a 2:57. I kept my eyes peeled for NC. I saw another local woman in about 3:00 position, but no NC. Then I saw a few more in the low to mid 3:0x's, including my girl AR who I met last year while running the Akron Marathon. She ended up with a 3:06 in her second marathon ever--a 23:00 pr!

No NC. Around 3:10 pace I saw a girl who looked like NC and I thought it was her and I started cheering and then quickly realized it wasn't her! Ok. That must mean one thing: NC is AHEAD of 2:57 pace! Oh yeah!

I texted E with this info and within a few minutes got confirmation. NC was winning at mile 25! She went on to win her first marathon ever in 2:55 (after running a 1:29 first half, mind you). BADASS! (You can see where I get my name in this post). See something in the air!

Also around 3:10 position, I saw Joe Positive who was looking happy as can be and still light on her feet around mile 22.5. JP is not one to fake her feelings. It was a good day for her too. I ran with her here last year when she also came to Cleveland and I really missed the ability to do it again, but I had to behave. I gave her a Woo! and ran with her in my head.

I also saw many other friends. I don't think a single friend of mine had a bad day. Everyone seemed to be breathing that air.

In the meantime, I was walking from mile 23 to 22. Once I got to mile 22, I found some stairs and made myself sit for 30 minutes as I waited for my sister. I was not allowed to stand for 30 minutes. I MADE myself behave. It was hard. But I did it. #2 thanks me I am sure.

I got up after my rest period and walked a bit to get the blood flowing. And then right on time the 4:15 pace group arrived. I looked for my sister and didn't see her. And then a dude moved and there she was--a vision in a blue singlet and goofy white sunglasses. YES! She was executing the plan perfectly! YES! YES! YES!

I jumped in and she immediately started to cry. NO! NO! NO! Oh crap! I immediately thought she must be hanging on for dear life and feeling awful. I needed to calm her down. I was remained quiet and calm and ran around the water stop while she made it through. On her way out she was composed and I realized it was going so well she knew she was going to do it and was overwhelmed with emotion. Not yet! I warned her. Let's focus. We can cry in a couple of miles! She still was doing great. The pace was much harder now, but not too hard. She was exactly where you would expect anyone to be at mile 22 of a marathon when running the appropriate pace. It required much more focus on her part, but she was still managing just fine.

We got to mile 23 and saw my mom. My sister jumped off the course and gave her a hug. I normally wouldn't advise this, but it was ok. She was doing fine. I got her back on track and caught her back up to the pace group before letting her go again. I'd see her again around mile 25. I ran back to my mom and told her where to go next and booked it the mile down the street back through the semi-hood to mile 25.5 and then walked up the course a bit. I figured I had lots of time based on the runners who I saw passing me, all of whom were well ahead of her last time around. But much to my surprise I saw her WAY ahead of the pace group (in fact I never ever even saw them again!) She was hauling ass and looked relaxed and smooth!

OH YES! This is what legendary first marathons are made of. Let's do it!
*
So I jumped in and we worked on passing everyone in sight. We made the final turn and it's tough because you can see the finish line for 9.5 blocks before you get to it. It was getting hard for her, but we focused on the runners ahead letting them pull her to them. Meanwhile, I got the spectators cheering for her and all the people accomplishing the marathon. I made an even bigger fool of myself than when E ran by, but I didn't care. THIS was amazing!

My sister was a chubby nonathletic kid all her life. No one ever thought she could complete a marathon, let along run a negative split 4:10:46 in her first shot! No one. Not even her. But she did.

And no one ever thought E who didn't believe herself that she could run a sub-20 5k could ever run a 37:36 10k, but E did.

And no one ever thought that a novice marathoner could run a 4 minute negative split, winning her first ever marathon in 2:55 (that she only ran because she wanted to see if she liked marathons), but NC did.

And no one thought that a working mother of two very young kids could bounce back from cancer and run a 1:40 half just 5 months after getting the all clear from her oncologist, but Carmen did.

And no one ever thought that a lifelong smoker would pick up running after finally quitting in her late 30's, find out she is incredibly naturally talented and win prize money running a p.r. well into her 40's, but JP did.

And no one ever thought an overweight nonathletic mother of 3 who started running to lose weight, who ended up losing almost 100 lbs within 1.5 years would run a 3:06 in her second marathon ever, but AR did!

Forget Lebron. Believe in you!

*Mile 26.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Money Money Money Money

UGH. I hate money. All my life, I've hated it. I watched my parents fight about it during my whole entire childhood. I was always aware there was never enough and I always felt guilty about needing it. I still do to this day. The one thing I loved about working as a lawyer, maybe sadly more than anything else, was that I finally didn't have to worry (as much) about it.

I am not a flashy person. I don't need a lot of stuff. I really don't care if anyone is impressed by the car I drive or the shoes I wear. My one weakness is clothes, but even there when I need to I know how to display my style on a budget (lately, it helps that my style is stay-at-home runner mom so I get away with bumming around in running clothes--running is great for some many things) Since I've been on my strict SAHM budget I haven't indulged in much. I've even been wearing the same pair of running shoes for months now (thank you low pregnancy mileage).

Yet, I find myself yet again falling behind on my monthly expenses. It would be one thing if I spent money doing cool stuff or indulging myself or something, but I haven't. I've been catching up on lingering doctor bills and my rental house bills and insurance and boring junk like that. It's horribly depressing to have to ask mrp for more money to pay for stuff like my cell phone and part of my rental house mortgage. Especially when my birthday's coming up and I was hoping to get a pair of running shoes and the carseat adaptor for our BOB Duallie or maybe some new under wear or socks. I could use those too.

I know I really can't complain. We do all right for ourselves and we certainly are 900 million times more financially secure than my parents were when I was growing up. A lot of my anxiety has to do with the way we manage our finances--my bills versus mrp's bills. It's just easier for us to keep things separate since we married in our early 30's and were already entrenched in our own systems. But, I try to require as little a month as possible and although I have been doing well, staying within my budget for the past few months, I am a bit behind this month and staring down the barrel of a high-for-me credit card bill for next month (car insurance and baby supplies). (And it would help if the lawyer who I do a little work for would send my check! It won't cover the entire deficit, but it would certainly help.)

And when I need to ask for money, I don't feel like a partner asking her partner for money to cover necessary expenses. Oh no. I am suddenly a 10 year-old mouth to feed, freaking out that my field trip fee is going to prevent my dad from having enough gas to get to work. I feel so much guilt and shame about not being able to pay for things myself. I so wish I could drop that emotional baggage from feelings about finances. I am so jealous of people who learned something about money in their growing-up years other than to feel shame about needing it.

Anyway, peanut is going through some funky sleep adjustment and was up this morning moaning and crying around 5:45 and although I got him back to sleep guess who's been up the whole time worrying, once again, about money. UGH.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Take That!

* As I mentioned yesterday, I had my 33 week midwife appointment yesterday. I actually lost a pound since my last appointment. That means in the last 2.5 months I've only gained a pound. I saw a different midwife from the practice than I usually see and only after I told her I was running around 20 miles a week still did she seem at all concerned about my recent lack of weight gain. She asked me to make sure I'm eating enough. I responded by pointing out that I have the same eating habits I've had all along and I gained 35 pounds in the first 23 weeks of the pregnancy! Then she wasn't at all concerned. Plus, I'm measuring spot on for 33 weeks and #2's little heart sounds good and is moving a ton so no worries. Phew!

I have to say I do feel somewhat vindicated that I haven't gained much weight these last couple of months. I always knew I wasn't over-indulging or otherwise doing something gluttonous such that I normally would gain so much so fast. I knew my body just has a way of packing it on early when I'm pregnant. Now I wish I knew how much I actually weighed the last few months of my last pregnancy. Although judging from the fact I weighed not much less than I do now at 6 weeks post-partum, I think I gained a lot more last time than I will this time. Who knows. As long as everyone's healthy, who cares? But now we're in the final weeks, #2 should really be packing on the chub, so I expect that the scale will start creeping up again. C'est la vie.

In other news, peanut woke up on the early side again. However, I am really interested to know whether he is trying to move to one nap or just trying to get back on his schedule after a busy weekend. So, I kept him busy until his normal nap time even though he got his blanky and went to the gate at the bottom of the stairs several times before that. We played on the tricycle in the basement and played with blocks and vacuumed and got yelled at for playing with the treadmill cord (well, I yelled at him for that).

I also slew a massive spider. I never was good about dealing with bugs. I'd kind of freak about them actually. But once I became a mom, I didn't want the massive spiders and other creepy crawlies hurting my baby so I've found the strength to wield the shoe with ferocity! I still freak on the inside, but on the outside I am the queen of spider-slaying!

The weather is still not particularly inviting, but it's not as horrid as yesterday. I have peanut's 18 month appointment (although he still has 9 days to go--I'm not ready for him to be closer to 2 than 1 already!) mid-day, but later we will hit the park and today nothing will stop us!

It's been a half an hour since I put peanut up for his nap and it's quiet. Looks like today I'll at least get a morning nap. Although it's a pain to plan around 2 naps, it's the schedule I'm very used to now and it also seems to me that peanut isn't quite ready for the one-nap conversion. I'm sure it will happen soon, but I think I have a little more time. We shall see!

* This photo isn't exactly helping me make the case that I'm now some sort of badass now. Oh well!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Old Man Snores

Whoa. It's pouring outside. I have never been one to not get out in the rain. In fact, I like a heavy rain. It's so quiet and peaceful to run in it. But being 33+ weeks pregnant with a toddler to strap in the BOB under the weather shield is really killing my motivation to head out in the pouring rain. It doesn't help that it's only 43 degrees out there.

In other news, peanut has not taken his morning naps in a few days now. He wants to head up to his crib at the normal time, but once there he plays for a good 40 minutes and then starts crying and crying and crying such that it's clear he's not going to sleep. Is this the switch to a single-nap lifestyle? Just in time for a busy week and weekend where I have lots of things planned based on the old nap schedule. So of course it is, right! We'll see.

The other peanut development worth noting is his new found love of cuddling with momma in the mornings. On the weekend mrp and I often bring him in bed with us first thing in the morning to cuddle and play before starting our day. Yesterday, he woke up so darn early and I felt crusty and tired so I brought him in bed with me and he laid with me and cuddled for 15 minutes! This morning he got up at his usual time so I planned to just take him down to play like usual, but he started pointing excitedly to our bedroom. I asked him if he wanted to go in momma and dadda's bed to cuddle and he said emphatically, "Yeah!" So that's what we did and it was so nice. We cuddled and talked about the baby coming. We looked at pictures in my pregnancy books and he hugged my belly and seemed happy to hear about the impending arrival of his little sister. Of course, we'll see how he actually likes it when it happens! And on mornings like this I can't believe this boy will ever sass me! Such a little cuddle-monkey!

I'm trying to head out for this run. I really am, despite still sitting here in my pj's and despite the pouring rain and chilly temps.

Update: About 45 minutes after peanut came down from his first nap attempt he grabbed his blanky and headed to the gate and shook it, the universal sign it's time for a nap! So, a.m. nap take-two and I get to not feel so guilty about being a wuss still sitting here in my pj's watching the rain!

Update #2: Well, 15 minutes into that "nap" we have "waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!" So much for that!

Update #3: I ended up getting an hour and fifteen minute nap at noon. Not the best, but better than nothing. He tried to get me to take him up around 1:45, but I think he's maybe manipulating me to get to nurse more--still nursing before naps and bed. Hmmm. In other news, the weather blew chunks and I never could get motivated to drag poor peanut out in it. We went to my late afternoon midwife appointment and that's about all we did today! Oh well. There's always tomorrow. Hopefully this is the last heinous weather day for a while!

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

A Pregnant Lady's Progress

* As I've mentioned often around here I love helping people achieve their running goals. Whether the goal is to start running or to complete a first marathon or to improve race times, I love helping others! I got another e-mail from an acquaintance seeking my help to advance to the full marathon. While I am not sure I'm the best person for advanced performance training, I do think I have the knowledge, insight and empathy to help beginners and intermediate level runners. And without advertising, I seem to have quite a few people seeking out my assistance, so maybe this is something I need to pursue. I am STILL trying to figure out what to do with my life. Maybe I can make running a bigger part of my professional life than I once thought. I love it love it LOVE IT so that would be really nice! Not sure how to parlay it into something businessy yet, but I've got my thinking cap on. If you have any ideas, do share!

Still chugging along at 32.5 weeks. Got in a solid 4.25 yesterday pushing peanut in the BOB. The weather has been spectacular--a little warm for pregnant running, but not too too bad. Who can complain about mid-70's, low humidity and sunshine?! It's been great for hangin' outside with peanut. We play on the swings after our run and come home and he scoots around on his little bike or kicks the big ball around the yard with me. Sometimes I act like a pregnant lady and sit and blow bubbles while he plays, but I hate being all wussy like that and try to play too. But sometimes I really do need the break.

I've had a couple days of swelling in my hands and feet--mostly over the weekend when it was humid. Last pregnancy the swelling and problems with the blood flow in my legs derailed my running around this time. As I've described here before, I'm sure, lactic acid would fill my legs within minutes of starting to run and I didn't have the blood flow to clear it out so my lower legs burned and I just couldn't run any more. This time I've experienced that feeling a tiny bit, but usually just mildly for a minute or so early in the run. Once I get through a mile or so I've been fine. Hopefully this continues. I do not feel at all as PREGNANT as I felt last time at this stage in the game.

That might have something to do with weight gain. I seem to have plateaued at 35-36 lbs total. I have only gained 1-2 lbs in the past two months. Yeah! I don't know for sure because I stopped finding out my weight half-way through, but I would guess I gained around 50 lbs last pregnancy. I might be able to keep the weight gain this time capped at around 40 lbs total. This would be a beautiful thing! LAst pregnancy I was 30 lbs over my pre-preg weight at 6 weeks post-partum. That is NO fun, I assure you! Sure, by 5 months those 30 lbs were gone. Even if I have 5 fewer lbs to lose, I will be happy! Overall, I am much less worried about it than I was a couple of months ago. I have accepted that it's a small price to pay to make a new fabulous person for this world. It's the least I can do :)

On the peanut front, he just gets cuter and cuter every day. I know every mom says that and I don't care. It's true! He's sitting on the couch playing with his tractor and practicing his words. Momma! Dadda! Brrrrrr. Brrrrr. Bum. Bum. Bum. Oh! He just saw a school bus! "Bah! Bah!" he says with a floppy-handed wave. He is such a little boy now. It seems to happen right before my eyes. Yesterday, we visited my friend JenC and her one-month old son. Peanut was very gentle with the baby and had no problem with me holding him. Phew! That made me happy. (Also, for the record baby boy is CUTE! How happy I am for Jen!) On our way home from our visit I asked peanut if he liked the baby and he emphatically said, "Yeah!" I think we're fairly ready for #2!

*I need to post more photos around here, don't I?

Monday, May 03, 2010

The Power of Running

As I'm sure you all know by now my sister is fixin' to run her very first marathon right here in Cleveland in 13 short days! Of course I took it upon myself to train her for it. As I've said before, there isn't much I love more than spreading my love of running! I logged into her blog this morning and I couldn't help but share what I found. I share it not to toot my own horn as a sister/coach, but rather as further evidence of the power of running. Behold!

A LETTER TO MY SISTER
I just can't thank you enough for helping me train and using your resources to get me through this. Nobody has ever been so nice to me or helped me so much with anything ever. A marathon is an important goal for anyone, but for me I'm sure you know it's the biggest most important thing I've ever done in my life, and even though training is difficult for me and my lifestyle I fully intend to continue for future races.

Training has changed who I am and who I want to be. It's shaped this whole new person that I always wished and never thought I could become. I still struggle every day with feeling that I'm somehow broken or can't have a normal happy life, but becoming an athlete--not just a runner, not just someone who will run a marathon once, but a real athlete--has taught me that I am not broken, I am strong. It's irrefutable proof that my strength of will can carry me through anything, even if it's sometimes hard, even if I sometimes don't want to do it, even if other people tell me I can't or shouldn't or I'm no good. Even if I am broken and even if my life is never normal, I really can get through anything and there is no reason for me to give up hope, ever.

I thank you every time I run for giving me that gift. Every time someone tells me how great I look I thank you. Every time I sheepishly decline a drink because I have to run 15 miles the next day and someone looks at me in awe I thank you. Every time I "matter-of-factly" tell someone I'm in training I thank you. Every time I look in a mirror and see a woman I am proud and happy to be--a woman who was once hidden by fat and anger and shame--I thank you.

Whether I make it through the finish at 3:59:59 or if I break my foot and can't finish at all, coming this far is a great achievement. I'm doing it for me, but I am inspired and motivated to do it because of you. I am proud to be your sister and so excited to be following in your tracks. I love you!

Sunday, May 02, 2010

And Gravy

My exams are graded and I just wrapped up my contract work for the month of April. That means I actually have some free time! Woo! I have lots of fun stuff on tap this week: play date with monicaonthego's daughter, lunch with Jen C and baby C, maybe a hair cut, a lunch date with mrp, and my weekly visits to my grandparents.

Of course there will also be running. Not a ton, but I will log some quality miles. I felt good running this past week. I made it out 18.5 miles over 4 runs. I think that is sufficient given the running around and general busy-ness I had going on last week. Maybe I'll log more this week, maybe not. I just don't care. I'm happy.

This morning I headed to the trails to redeem myself after my last disastrous trail run. I thought I could get out early enough to meet monicaonthego for part of her long run, but alas peanut was being all fun and cute and mrp and me were having a blast helping him with his breakfast and playing. Then mrp insisted he put in some floor mats in the new car and stuff like that (totally fair given how I stained the interior of the Jetta with all my muddy and sweaty trail running shenanigans!) I was a good 45 minutes late to meet monica but a group I sometimes run with were waiting for stragglers. I was hesitant to run with a group because I have no business pushing too hard these days and it really would be pointless. I want to keep my runs nice and relaxed from now until #2 is here.

Lucky for me there were two faster guys and an acquaintance who normally leads the group, but who just happened to be recovering from pneumonia. Perfect! So me and acquaintance headed out on our own after watching the faster dudes zip on down the trails. Acquaintance normally is in group leader mode and I never really got to know her. It was like running with others was her job so it wasn't the usual conversations I have with my other running buddies. But with just her and me, we had a really nice conversation and I could actually see being buddies with her in a way I never could before. It's funny how a one-on-one run can do that.

The run itself was great. No calamities and I finished. That's my bar these days. I averaged around 9:30 pace for 6 miles on the trails and I even managed to run all the way up the mega-hill! The mega-hill is gravy!

Anyway, it's late on Sunday and now that all my boring ol' sit-on-my-butt-in-front-of-the-computer work is done I'm going to go get up and do something other than sitting on my butt in front of the computer!