Monday, January 25, 2010

Peace of Mind

Some updates on The Little Man:

New cute word I am having a hard time correcting: Oneth. As in "This is the twenty-oneth time I have played this game", or "I can hardly wait until January thirty-oneth!" Unlike "Candy Cakes" and "Kretzles", I am trying to correct him. As adorable as I find this to be, somehow I think I shouldn't let this one fly. However, I must admit, it's kinda catchy. I can hear myself now, "For the hundred and oneth time, clean up your room!" That's way better than "hundred and first time"

Ya, OK, I would probably just pick another number anyway.

Also, I think I have FINALLY made a decision on where and what The Little Man will be doing for school next year. Since he will be a younger five for kindergarten, I was a bit nervous sending him. As the time for registration grew nearer, the decision didn't get easier, like I thought it would, instead it grew more difficult. I was literally changing my mind every day. I was going batty, The Hubs was going batty, and all my friends that had to hear me go on and on about my decision were going batty. It's so difficult to make a decision now that you are hoping to see benefits for many years down the road. What I mean is, I know The Little Man is ready for school now, but I wasn't concerned about how he would do now, but more about what this looked like when he was in middle school and high school. Since I don't have privy to what the future may hold, I struggled making this decision.

Thankfully, I know who does know what tomorrow looks like as well as twelve years from now, and after much prayer, we have decided to hold him one more year. I am still concerned that he will be a little bored when he does start kindergarten, but it's only one year. I am also concerned that he will be so much bigger than the rest of his class (considering he's the tallest kid in his class right now and is the same size as a five and half year old), but he's a boy so he can be big without feeling too awkward, and eventually they'll all even out. What's most important is that I really feel at peace with this decision for the first time in a LONG time, and I feel very sure that this is what is in The Little Man's best interest. I will turn in his registration for a Junior Kindergarten program this week. After we find out if he makes it in, and isn't wait-listed, I will pull his name off of the kindergarten registration at The Girl's school. It feels good to have finally made a decision. I am excited to have one more year with him too. He will be gone at school a lot more than he is now, but that's the natural progression of things anyway. Actually, I think he will spend less time in Kindergarten than he will in Jr Kindergarten. So, I guess that's not so natural, but you know what I mean.

Plus, we can finally work on getting his room cleaned...FOR THE ONE HUNDRED AND ONETH TIME!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

And I Did it Wearing a Small Fanny Pack

Here's the deal: I realize you all are sick of hearing about the race I ran in last weekend. Also, I don't know how much more I can write about it.

Actually, truth be told, I just deleted a HUGE long post about the whole thing. I wrote this big ol' post, and then at the end, I realized that it's not the details of the race, my struggles along the way (spiritually and physically), or a daily training log I want to talk about. In fact, if I did (oh, and I tried, trust me I tried. You are thankful I deleted it), the most important message about this whole experience would be lost. In reality, most people wouldn't even have gotten to the end of the post to read what I think is the most important part of this whole experience was for me.

SO here it is:

I was able to run this race by the mercy, love, and grace of God. That's it. There is nothing more to it. It was His strength alone that carried me 13.1 miles. It was his mercy and grace that allowed me to train for over a year with little to no injury. It was His loving kindness that gently taught me during each and every run. When I would make this race bigger than what it ought to be, it was Him who tenderly and lovingly corrected me. He faithfully met me every time I hit the pavement or treadmill. He kept me safe, He encouraged me, He strengthened me, He taught me, He loved me. For this, I am am humbled and so grateful. He knew my heart's desire from the time it came to be for this race, and He freely gave it to me. I did NOTHING to deserve even one second of any of it. For those reasons alone, it is very hard for me NOT to talk or write about it. I just HAVE to tell everyone I can about how amazing God is and how much He loves us.

There have been many times, in the past month especially, that the enemy has been desperately trying to take this time away from me. In fact it still continues even today. He wants/ed nothing more than to have me quit, be discouraged, or make it about myself. When all those things failed, he still tries to do work by keeping me quiet, or if I don't keep quiet, maybe convince me to take all the credit.

He won't win.

To God's glory alone, I was able to run 13.1 miles.

Praise you Lord Jesus! Your love, grace, and mercy goes beyond all human understanding.

"However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace." -Acts 20:24

Friday, January 15, 2010

I am Returning with Joy

I knew the day would come. I am thankful that it didn't take too long to come back to blogging because of the joy. Oh, the joy. The Doctors think that they have the shoulder thing under control, and there will be no antibiotics or craziness involved. Just a Cortisone shot and some exercises. How's that for an answer to prayer!

Right now, I am frantically trying to get everything put together/packed so I can head out of Dodge for the big race...which is totally why I am blogging. I just love to procrastinate. I am so happy at this moment. Not just to race, or get out of town, but that I have been allowed to even come this far. A half marathon may be nothing to some people, but for me it is a distance I thought was unattainable. Being riddled with injury after injury for the better part of two years, I thought I just wasn't made to run that far. Actually, I still don't think I am made to run that far, but through God's grace and mercy on me, He has allowed it.

I am so not worthy.

So today, as I was telling the kids that I was leaving for the weekend, The Little Man got upset. He was unsure who was going to sing his Baboo song to him every night. Without even skipping a beat his sister chimed in, "Don't worry buddy! While Mommy is gone, I'll come into your room and sing the Baboo song to you."

How sweet is that?

I love what a nurturing heart she has. I just hope it doesn't go away after being rejected by her brother.

The many lists are made, bags are packed, and meals organized. It's time to hit the road...running.

(I am so cheesy)

Monday, January 11, 2010

I Thought This Was For My Own Good **Updated at bottom**

I'm not gonna lie, I am not blogging out of guilt today, you know, since it's been a whole WEEK since I have even thought about writing anything down. No, today I am blogging out of pure nervous energy. One day, I will write out of the joy in my heart.

I promise.

Today, however, is just not that day.

Today is the day I sit and wait for a phone call from my doctor after he interprets my results from a blood test taken on Friday. Normally, I probably wouldn't be so nervous, but today is different. Depending on the results of this blood test, I will or will not get to run in a race I have been training for for close to a YEAR. I haven't mentioned this race because, well, I just didn't want to talk about it. I just wanted to train, run my best, then come back to the Ol' Blawg, and THEN tell you all about it, and how wonderful it was.

Back in September, when the media and people in general, were in mass hysterics over the H1N1 Flu and the Seasonal Flu season that was upon us I thought it might be a good idea to get our flu shots done and over with. Regardless of the hysteria this year, we (the kids and I) get our flu shots every year. Since flu season would be in the middle of a lot of training for the upcoming race and also during race time, I thought it would be a good idea to get the shot a bit earlier than normal so I wouldn't have to put off training or possibly miss the race due to being ill. So the kids and I marched off to a flu clinic that The Girl's school held.

(NOTE: The Girl? She HATES needles. So while you are reading what happens next, keep in mind that I was trying, with all my might, to keep her calm and from running away from me and the clinic being held. Therefore, I could not stop what I knew in my head seemed wrong at the time.)

In my attempts to show the kids how flu shots were no big deal, and that there was nothing to be afraid of, I opted to go first. As the nurse wiped down what felt like close to the top of my shoulder, instead of the meaty part of my upper arm, I didn't correct her because The Girl, at that moment, decided to start screaming hysterically. So as the needle went into my arm, and caused a pain like I have never felt before during a shot, instead of turning to the nurse and asking her what the heck she was doing and screaming out in pain myself, I had to turn to The Girl and The Little Man and show them how brave I was and how shots don't hurt at all. See, they had nothing to be afraid of. Meanwhile, I was enduring quite a bit of pain, you know, for a shot.

That pain? It has never ended. Still to this day, January 11th, close to FOUR MONTHS later my shoulder still hurts. I have had to give up some things that I like because of the pain and the decreased range of motion. Things like yoga, lifting weights, and oh, SLEEP. Why didn't I go to the doctor right away? Well, because I thought that there was nothing they could do. I thought that they would just say that sometimes it just takes a while for the soreness to go away from a flu shot. And then after the pain lasted a while longer, I thought they would think I was crazy, and honestly, I thought I was going crazy.

Long story short, after a few doctor visits from a few different doctors, and a MRI, they have found that my bone is inflamed meaning that it is possibly infected. Meaning I may not get to run my race. Bone infections are pretty rare and also pretty serious. Instead of running, I would be at home having IV antibiotic treatments that will last for six weeks.

Can you guess which I would rather?

After training for so long, and doing everything I can to be ready for this race, this is a hard pill to swallow. Of course, my health is my number one priority, but I can't help but think that 1) I feel fine 2) I have been training with this infection for close to four months now and 3) What's six more days? Really? It's been close to four months now. I'm not a doctor, but I would think that six more days wouldn't make too much of a difference especially since the only symptom I have is a sore shoulder.

I hate the way this has consumed my every thought, and how I walk around anxiously awaiting this phone call.

I hate that I have made this race so big.

I guess you can say, I am a bit embarrassed.

I would like to say that I am sitting comfortably and peacefully at rest under the wing of God, trusting Him with all this craziness. However, sometimes things like this reveal to you just what you lack.

The doctor called this afternoon (after my last long run before the race), and said my blood looks normal! I have a mix of emotions right now. I am elated I have been cleared to run this race, but I am confused, concerned, and annoyed that now they (the doctors) are not sure what is going on. All they know is that there is an abnormality in my bone that is of concern to them. I will see a bone specialist on Wednesday and hopefully learn more.

I am asking for prayers for the doctors I see on Wednesday. I would like prayer for clarity and understanding as to what is going on. I would also like prayer for complete healing of whatever this is.

If you have made it this far, thanks for reading my ramblings. I realize this is a bit more out of control than normal...

Monday, January 4, 2010

Pardon Me While I Blubber

My Baby Girl is seven today. SEVEN! Just when you want time to stand still, it screams past you at the speed of light.

Seven years ago, I had no idea what I was in for. I had heard all the cliche things people say when you are going to have your first baby. Things like "My whole world was going to change", and that I was "About to experience love like I never had before". My ears heard the words, my brain comprehended what they said, but my heart. Oh, my heart! My heart had no clue what was about to hit it head on, and with full force.

From your first breath on this earth, I loved you. Not because of anything you did or said, but just because you were here.

And you were mine.

You rocked my world on January 4th, 2003, and it still shakes every single day.

Happy seventh birthday baby girl!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Top 10 of 2009

Welcome 2010. I don't know how to say you. Two thousand ten, is what I am inclined to say since we just left two thousand nine, but I am told that is totally un-cool. I guess I am supposed to call you twenty ten. When I think about it, I guess that makes sense since we never called 1990 one thousand nine hundred and ninety. Who am I though? I will try to get used to calling you twenty ten, and desperately cling any way I can to any shred of coolness I have left.

I will admit, when I thought about doing this post, I got sick to my stomach. I have been blessed this past year to photograph many other families. I loved meeting each of them, and learning their stories, but that left very small amounts of time to photograph my own family, and when I had a chance to photograph them, I was tired of taking pictures. I knew this going into this top ten post. I thought I would be lucky to get even ten photos period of my kids, let alone them being "favorites". Sure enough, when I went back to find ten posed, perfect pictures, I couldn't find ten. However, as I went through all of my 2009 photos, I found so many other photos that I loved so much more. Photos that weren't posed, that weren't technically perfect, photos that weren't planned, but lived.

So I learned two things putting this post together: 1) I need to take more photos of my own kids, even if I am feeling a little burned out because these are my kids, and these are our family's stories. 2) I love photographs of our life. Sure I love the posed and traditional shots too, but the photos where my girl's hair isn't perfect, but her smile is a mile wide because she is having the time of her life are precious. They have life. They tell a story. They breath. I won't stop posing my kids for more formal pictures, but in Twenty Ten I am going to work on capturing them beautifully, living their childhoods out.

Here's to Two Thousand Nine (in no particular order):

Snow play in an October blizzard:

Running from the waves in Newport Beach:

My favorite family portrait of '09

Finding pine cones at cousin's cabin:

Running through sprinklers this summer:

Blasting off rockets this past spring:

Chasing the wind, also this spring:

More posed for fall color with summer tans look:

More posed pictures from a session when The Little Man turned four:

We did get to play a bit at this session:

The Girl's six year old session:

Yummy lashes:

So if you were counting, there were more than ten, but I honestly could not edit this down any more. In fact my heart hurts about leaving out some other photos. When all was said and done, I had found over thirty "favorites".

That's a great year.