Wednesday, February 27, 2008


"Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow . . . " - William Shakespeare
Sometimes I mourn the days gone by and live for the thrill of tomorrow's unknown. It seems to somehow all meld together and go by so fast. One looks forward to the future, but when it's gone, wonders where it all went. Having a new baby has been one of those reminder lessons to live more in the present and enjoy each and every moment. And what would those moments be if you didn't laugh and cry and allow yourself the emotion?

I can tell I'm getting ready to blog again, because I start writing in my head throughout my day. Finding the energy and the time combined is another issue entirely. When my husband walks in the door, home from work, here's a common scenario:

"Hi honey! (baby crying) Can you take him? He's cranky, he needs a diaper change, and I think he just wants to be held - he won't let me put him down. #3 needs help with homework - something's going on with the computer, #2 is mad at me and wants to know if you'll go to the gym to shoot hoops, and #1 is having a pre-teen moment, and will you tell her to turn down her music? Hey honey, when you're done changing his diaper, can you pour me a glass of wine and help me fix dinner?"

That's the reality. I swear it. But at least we can laugh about it. I love my family. I wouldn't change a thing. We just spent some of our tax money on a zoo membership. The river otters are my favorite.

My first sorta run
It was back in early January. We'd just spent a week at the cabin. I watched my husband and kids go x-c skiing, sledding, snowshoeing, iceskating . . . I went for a walk to the end of the street and back, and it made me sore. I didn't feel up to doing all those cool things, I was with the new baby - but I was still sorta bummed. I didn't get to see the kids do all those cool things or be with my husband experiencing it. So the next week we were at home, and it was raining profusely and the kids had been sick and on school vacation. I had to get out of the house. We had a new little stroller and one of the kids had asked Santa for a kickball, and Santa came through. I piled the kids into the car and we drove to a nearby elementary school. The three girls played a game (or 2 or 3) of kickball in the pouring rain, and I hung out in the covered blacktop nearby - baby in stroller, walking laps around the basketball court. It was the highlight of winter break to watch how much fun the girls had, and to be outside. (I think I walked 30 seconds per lap - I had to clock it - some sick internal runner disease.)

My first real run
January 27th. It was sunny. It was a Saturday afternoon. I really had nothing else to do. I had gone for several walks in the previous weeks. My husband convinced me that I should go and that it would be good for me. Baby Jackson was now 7 weeks old and we'd been glued to each other 24/7. I got dressed and ready to go, but then I procrastinated. At this point my husband had to do some persuasive encouraging. I cried (hormones), but my husband convinced me that Jackson would be okay without me. I wasn't gonna be gone very long, and if he fussed, he'd be okay.

It was a great run. I went 29 minutes without stopping. I was only supposed to go 20. But it was sunny and I couldn't resist. The back pain was something outta this world - that whole childbirth thing caused havoc - but who cares when you can go running.

Running last week
I have four kids - somewhere around here. It seems at any given moment I have a combination of three. It's great that I can stuff a jogger and three kids in the car, hitch two bikes to the back, and off we go to the park for a 2 plus mile loop. Everybody gets exercise. The next day was the same, just a new combination of kids. I love the park.

My run two days ago
I'm up to three miles - or supposed to be. I got ambitious and made out a training plan. I really wanted to run that marathon this summer, and believed I'd be ready. And maybe I would have been. But then I remembered that I have this little breastfed baby and it might be cruel to just assume that I can be gone for hours at a time at my own leisure and that he won't get hungry. Sure, I can run a 3-4 hour marathon, but what if I injure myself on the course and it takes me 6? So, I've adjusted to the idea of a fall marathon. Back to those three miles. I was supposed to go Sunday. Oops. So Monday came. Monday morning I had a piece of glass stuck in my foot. I'm not sure where from - I brought in a bike off of the porch on Sunday night - maybe something then - I dunno - no time to inspect it. So there's this glass, and my back was killing me - I tote this baby, who's growing like a weed, around all day and feed him every 2-3 hours in random precarious positions, so my back is really outta whack. I don't think I'd slept much the night before - I don't think he'd slept, so that usually means me too. I didn't want to go running. With this family of 6, two are up and gone to work and school and an early hour. I'm up next to feed one, waken the other two, feed the other two, dress one, encouraging dressing and lunchmaking, etc. By the time I've finally got two more off two school, I have a small window of opportunity before feeding time again.

Sometimes you have to force yourself to get out for your own good - I did run. (I took tweezers in the car, but never managed to get the glass out 'til later that night. Honestly, I just didn't have time.) I imagined my run in my head like one of those credit card commercials:

new mizuno tights for Christmas $70
shiny green i-pod $80
specialized nursing sports bra $75
Ironman BOB babyjogger $375

The opportunity to go run three miles? Priceless.

And to clarify . . . those tights are beautiful - I feel like they're too good for me and that I need to feel faster and fitter to wear them. All things in good time. The i-pod I have turned way down so I can hear the baby if he cries. The sports bra. I gotta say, I tried many a nursing bra, and hated them all. I finally went to a specialty store. I laughed at the idea of a nursing sports bra - like I'm gonna feed the baby while I'm running! But truths to be told: my friend designed it for the company, and it's comfortable and I really do need to feed the baby on the go after a run, and I don't have time to change clothes first. And the amazing BOB was a baby shower gift on Valentine's Day. I think everyone should take one for a test drive.

Now here I am - somehow a runner again - somehow a writer again. And somehow a mommy all over again. But I guess I've been them all along, it's just learning to adapt through change. It was sunny in Seattle today. I hope the sun shines down across the land.