Posts Tagged ‘one girl’s life’

Been working on some photos and found this one in the batch from runOhmcincy event at GABP on September 28th, and since I never rarely post photos of myself, thought I would share. Yep. Pretty much sums me up.

IMG_2758_resize

This is what Rachel says to me. “You’ve been quiet this whole time and then BOOM! I like that idea a lot.” She is throwing me a look along with it that is slightly surprised, but not at all surprised in the same expression. She leans over and taps Eric ( a different Eric, not my regular Eric) on the shoulder and tells him ‘Listen to this. Tell him what you just said to me.’

It’s almost the end of the weekend in Lexington and an impromptu brainstorming session has broken out – something that quickly energizes and sparks passionate discussion in our group though we’re all a bit exhausted at this point from the whirlwind of fun we’ve been having. I am sitting around a table with several other runners talking to Eric Marr and Rachel Crabtree. Eric is the Race Director and general idea man behind Run the Bluegrass Half-Marathon, as well as the Founder of Lexenomics. Rachel Crabtree, in addition to having her own business as founder of Wellfed Meals, has the official sounding title of  “Runner’s Experience Coordinator” though if this weekend is any indication, she should add “whirlwind organizer”, “cat herder” and “force to be reckoned with” in bold print on that business card as well.

These two are idea people and despite being tired, they are quietly listening to all of this passion being thrown at them by the handful. Taking it in. I can see the wheels turning in each of them – already trying to run with the logistics on some of what we’re coming up with because, and maybe more important than being ‘idea people’, they are also ‘action people’.  Both entrepreneurs, they know ideas without action behind them are just good talk.

Friends, I do – and I don’t – know how I ended up sitting at this table.  It started with my race recap from this past Spring, then there was a tweet, followed by an emailed idea, some more communications and then BOOM! There it is:

Run the Bluegrass Amb Logo

To someone who only began to describe herself as an athlete MAYBE two years ago – never feeling secure about that despite all the running and yoga and kickboxing that has occupied my last 2 decades because I wasn’t fast enough or tough enough or…just generally enough…

To someone who just recently began to own being enough – THIS WAS TERRIFYING. Run the Bluegrass was starting a Run Ambassador program for the first time and thought I would be a good fit. My mind immediately went to the oh-crap-they’re-going-to-expect-me-to-run-fast-and-I’m-still-struggling-with-10:30s place and I almost shut it down, except that then instead I decided to ask what being an ambassador means and the answer I got still makes me tear up a little if I think about it too hard.

In a nutshell, what I got back from Eric was ‘Just be you.’  That they liked my words and my photos and my ideas. You know, those things that are really close to my heart. Things that are the most ‘me’ of all the things I do.  That from my 3-part race recap, they could tell I was obviously passionate about the race.

“Passionate” is nice Southern speak for saying, ‘you won’t shut up about it and we’re glad for that’.

Essentially, they made me an Ambassador of Not Shutting-Up. I might be struggling with a 10:30 pace, but not shutting-up – that I got that down!

Also, if there’s an Ambassadorship of Not Shutting-Up, there are a few other places that should’ve called me a long time ago. Just sayin’. (Gordo’s, OPG I’m looking at you.) And okay, so maybe the U.N. didn’t call me (yet), BUT – the U.N. has Good Will Ambassadors, and running is a sport that’s all about spreading good will. So, it’s not unfathomable that they might call me. You know, should Angelina Jolie ever get bored with the gig and they need to fill the position. Consider me in line.  I digress…

That was how I ended up in Lexington. A meeting of the Ambassador minds and to do a little previewing of what this amazing run wants to offer next Spring.  So that with that information, I can use my not shutting-up skills. They intend to put on a REALLY COOL EVENT!  and in doing so, give me a lot to write about and take photos of and get inspired over so that I can’t help but share it with you. Not because they asked me to do those things, but because I’m so excited about them that I can’t shut up about them.

If this past weekend was any indication, people – this is going to be one heckuva ride. And you’re coming with. First and foremost because if I’m going to do this run again, and do the full 13.1, I’m going to need to get my training in gear. So there’s that to talk about.  Also, because I took about 300 photos over the weekend which I want to show you.  Then, there were these awesome people I met – who I should introduce you to.  As the race starts to release details, you’ll get the inside scoop.

Peeps, I got stories. And – just being me and all –  I’m going to tell them.

Weekend Runaway

Posted: 10/06/2013 in 13.1
Tags: ,

Good morning, peeps! As I write this, I’m holed-up under a nice cushy comforter tucked into a corner room of a lovely hotel in Lexington. In about an hour, I’m going to get showered and re-packed. I’m going to find a little place for breakfast called the Coffee Pub that has good coffee and smells like warm. I remember it from my last visit. Then I’m going to drive around on an overcast day and see if I can add a few more photos to the 1000 I’ve already taken this weekend.

After which I will drive my hour and ten minutes home, I will kiss my husband extra special nice because it’s rare that we’re apart 48 hours. I will play “toss the rag” with the dog because that’s what he will want to show me he’s happy I’m back. Then I will begin to process all of this amazing weekend, edit it all, and stand in wonder at the way life sometimes goes.

But right now, right now, there is this bed. Normally I would never use a computer in bed – but it’s okay because it’s a hotel. Hotels are for computers in bed, leaving your shoes where you kicked them off, and discovering shows like “Vanilla Ice Goes Amish” (seriously it’s a real show) (Also, I’m sorry America because that’s a real show). I’m having coffee. I’m watching a movie.

And I’m writing to you. Because this trip – this is something  you’re along for. You’re a part of why I’m here.

I have a lot to tell you.

Peeps, I am telling you – home improvement…just those two words – while generally exciting – this week, they make me need a nap. And if I’m being perfectly honest with you – I’m barely doing any of the work. The husband – he’s exhausting me just watching him get shiz done. When I ran out of staycation week, there was still a lot to be done and then I got BUSY! He pulled the short straw on this one and I owe him BIG! BIG! BIG!  The house is almost all yellow-ed up!

When you hear a really loud HALLELUJAH!! next weekend – it’ll be because the housepainting is finished.

I am not religious at all – agnostic heart, I have. But some things, they warrant really loud Hallelujahs even if it’s just the wind listening. Then duck, cause lightening.

Friends, some day I will tell you my story of this house. That is not this day.

This day is about –

Crap. What is it about? I got some stuff to catch you up on. And some stuff to tell you all about. So it’s kind of a catching up while catching what’s coming maneuver. Somewhere, Ryan Hanigan just cocked his head to the right and went, ‘WHAT?’ and he had no idea why. Sorry, Ryan. I’m abusing my baseball catching words again.

Playing Catch-Up

There’s been scraping, painting, crafting yoga classes, teaching yoga classes, homework for teacher training, etc.  – things to be done. Which means I’ve missed a lot of other stuff, namely running group meets, and time to write. When push comes to shove, I can run on my own odd times, so running group obligations have to shift for a bit.  I miss my running group. BADLY. Hopefully, I’ll be able to join up with them again starting next week.  BUT – while I’ve missed out on some runs – some other things have happened. First off, I made a new running friend – who can meet on one of my flex days and also likes to work out in the pre-dawn hours. We’ve got a little pace differential to work on, but I enjoy her company. Pace differentials don’t matter so much when you enjoy someone’s company – and also when they know about coyotes. Apparently, we were accompanied by coyotes at 5:30 the other morning. Me = clueless. She made sure we weren’t dinner. I got educated. A friend that will run with you at 5:30 in the morning AND not feed you to coyotes – gold I tell ya. They are gold!

Also, changed up my training plan (again). Ramming my shoulder into the ground a few weeks ago really threw any weight training (& quite a few yoga moves) right out the window. I had to figure out something though. The husband and I – we started meeting with a trainer once a week. A dude who is really enthusiastic, trained in gymnastics & martial arts, and perfectly willing to kick both our asses every Sunday morning. It’s been awhile since I’ve worked with a trainer building a program around just me ( & Eric) – and I have to say, it’s very, very nice. Also, last week we met him up at Burnet Woods to work out outside. It was GLORIOUS! The next best thing to a run outside is a full body workout outside. Y’all, Mother Nature provides plenty of obstacles.

Also, 5-6 weeks later, I can finally get a sports bra shirt on and off, and put the car in reverse again without wincing or needing help.  Do not, if you can help it, ram your shoulder into the ground at full speed. It is not a good idea.

I nailed down teaching two more regular yoga classes – Tuesday evenings and every other Sunday at Move Your Body Fitness in Erlanger. It’s a brand spanking new studio and so I got to pick times that work well for me. The place officially opens 9/28, but I taught my first class there for the “soft opening” just today. No one showed up – which is typical of a new studio – so no worries there. Rather than bail entirely, I pulled my mat over to the big windows and worked through my class there so people could see something going on in the business. Yoga-fy and they will come! I know it!  Really, please come!

Playing Catch Me if You Can

Tomorrow night (Weds), I’ll be heading over to Cincy Ballet’s Kaplan New Works. As I mentioned before, it’s that time of year again. Ballet season if firing up – and there is no better way to fire up than Kaplan. Friends, I know there are those of you that are going to roll your eyes at the mention of ballet – but this ain’t your grandmother’s ballet. Kaplan programs are sensual eye feasts. Unexpected musical twists. Risqué choreography. They are powerful, sexual, visceral pieces.  Especially with Cincy Ballet kicking off their 50th anniversary season – WHOA! THIS SHOW IS GOING TO BE GOOD!

I had the privilege of attending a preview night last week – and to be honest, I was hoping they’d choose the Johnny Cash Man in Black piece to showcase since I’m a JC fan – but they didn’t. They showcased a world premiere by Val Caniparoli called Caprice. Sometimes it’s a good thing when you don’t get what you want. First off, there’s another thing akin to the “chin thing” I wrote about last year – the girls, they just can’t stop kissing Patrick. And then there was this flippy thing – that in all my years of ballet, I would have to go slow-mo on it to even begin to figure out what was happening. Do not blink. You do not want to miss the flippy thing. It will catch your breath in your chest and hold it. That doesn’t even touch the music – 9 Paganini violin “caprices” performed live via 2 CCM graduate students onstage. If you are not familiar with Paganini caprices, they are technical violin on steroids. Extremely difficult to play and listening to them makes my heart ache. (Did I mention I took violin once upon a time too?)  I CAN NOT WAIT TO SEE THIS SHOW! Dear boys (or girls, I don’t judge), if you’re looking for some brownie points on date night with the girl – Kaplan new works runs through 9/22 – there are several after party events – and you can get tickets here.

Since we couldn’t take pictures at the preview – there were already 5 separate camera tripods set up for promo shots – I’ll flip you some of the shots from ballet day at GABP. In case you were wondering, I saw principal dancer Amador (he threw out the first pitch) after the preview – he wears his Reds ballcap around the dance studio.

IMG_2443_edit

A 720-degree windup, done a couple feet in the air.

IMG_2441_edit

Amador getting serious.

Reds tickets fell into my lap for 9/23 – and I’m thinking about going again on 9/27 for the last Reds social media night of the season. Actually, I’m trying to talk the husband into going to that whole series to get my fill of baseball (between that and playoffs, of course) before the season closes. Thinking about volunteering at Redsfest this year.

IMG_2453_edit

Chapman caught for Amador.

This weekend is the Hudy 7k/14k – which is sold out. I’m registered for the 14k. I’ve been so busy this Summer that I’ve barely been doing any racing, so it’ll be interesting to dive into the masses with this one and see how I’m doing. Knowing that I’ll get to see most of my running pack at this run makes me really happy to go do it – ready or not with the legs.

Finally – I’ve got a trip to Lexington coming up first weekend in October where I’m sure I’ll be taking LOTS of photos. I’ll have loads to share with you after that and I’m SO. DANG. EXCITED. about it that every time I get on 75-S and see the sign to Lexington, I swear my car wants to go that way! There will be bourbon and horses and donuts and running and LOTS AND LOTS of good things.  I need to keep part of it under wraps until I get back, but trust me peeps – this is some good stuff coming.

So that’s what I got. Good things, peeps. Good things. Also, I’ll share with you – from the Reds website – if you haven’t seen the video of Amador styling the Reds starting rotation, it’s pretty funny.  Also, video of his pitch, complete with 720-degree windup.

So, it’s no big secret around these woods that I’m a Reds fan. And while I’m not into the fawning routine, it’s also no secret that I’m a Sam LeCure fan – in my own words “One of the nicest guys in baseball that I’ve never met.”  His interviews are always funny and interesting, he keeps a positive social media presence with his #5things on Twitter (@mrLeCure) and he does good work with his Movember fundraising.

Last Friday, Sam put up the following on Twitter:

“expanding my twitter-ness, want to follow 1 new person I know nothing about each week, started today, pick every Friday. catch my eye”

And so I thought to myself –

Well, there were a few thoughts I thought to myself – all big brain, organic interest, overthinking all the things – type things.  Sorry, my brain can’t help itself.

Thankfully, I’ve learned to chuck most of that crap straight out the window. Overthinking =/= fun.  All of that overthinking crap ended up in two questions:

IMG_2437_edit2

FWIW – the Star-Spangled Banner was already finished playing.

#1 – Yeah. It would be cool if Sam followed me on Twitter. Easy peasy there.

#2 – Well crap. Why would Sam follow me on Twitter? No, really – Why WOULD Sam follow me? THANKS FOR THE EXISTENTIAL CRISIS SAM!

Luckily, I had a whole week of stay-cation and a coupla Reds games to figure myself out. So, Sam, here’s a list of 10 reasons why you ( & maybe a few other tweeps) should follow me on Twitter, in no particular order:

  • When you said ‘catch my eye’ on Twitter, I pictured what it would be like if you actually yelled ‘Catch!’ and tossed an eyeball at me. I didn’t drop it. I shrieked and did a spider-might-be-on-me dance, but I didn’t drop your eyeball. People need friends who don’t drop their eyeballs.

 

  • I can do 140-characters on lots of topics that aren’t about baseball (or eyeballs). I’m a bit nerdy in a friendly way. The con to that – I probably will use all 140 characters.

 

  • I think I have a pretty good grasp on being a fan. What it means to me: I enjoy going to games and rooting for the team, but I don’t take it too seriously.  There isn’t a bad day at the ballpark that is spent with my husband or a good friend sipping on a Shocktop and noshing on something from the Smokehouse. It’s nice when we win, it stinks when we lose – but at the end of a day, what I really like to see is a good game where everyone tried their best.  Sometimes you play as hard as you can, and the other guy still gets a handle on ya.

 

  • I love my husband. The man is a freaking ball of awesome all the time – even when he screws things up, it is awesomely spectacular! Why am I telling you that? Because it makes me uncomfortable when I see fans going all stalker meltdown on a player. I won’t be doing that.  Y’all have people of significance in your life – that should be respected. Married women flrting with players is unbecoming. Just my opinion.
  • Also, my husband does this to Beltran:
09032013 STL Win

“I scruncha your Beltran!”

  • If I saw you at Krogers, I would probably stop you and ask for help. Why? Because I am short and Krogers always has the good almonds on the top shelf. Going all spider-monkey on a grocery shelf just isn’t dignified. (at least not if anyone’s looking). I need more tall people in my life, Sam. To hand me things from tall places.

 

  • I’m a runner. Runners have lots of good qualities about them – perseverance, commitment. We know when to hold ’em and when to fold ’em in oncoming traffic. The ability to talk ourselves up really steep hills and talk to ourselves through lots & lots of miles. Sure, everywhere we drive we’ll annoy you with saying ‘I’ve run this’ for the 52,232,548 time – but also, if you run out of gas, you can always look at your runner buddy and say ‘you can run for gas right? it’s only 10 miles away’ – and stupidly, we’ll probably say ‘sure’.

 

  •  I know I don’t know jack squat about how to pitch 90mph. I won’t try to tell you how to do it.
  • Also, if you ever have a really bad day on the mound, go replay Game 3 of this season.  April 4th vs Angels.  There have been lots of examples of your excellence, but I like that one. You are badass, my friend. And we all need friends that remind us of our badassery once in awhile on a bad day.

 

  • I thought out most of this list while scraping paint off my house. I do that – stuff that gets me stinky-dirty. You seem like a guy that would appreciate a person willing to get stinky-dirty in the name of home improvement.

 

  • This has got to be one of the best player interviews I’ve ever read.  If this is who you are, then we would get along just fine – except for the whole Pabst thing. (Do they even sell Pabst in Cincinnati?) We home brew. I’ll be honest in saying its made me a bit beer snobby.  But you do seem like the kind of guy it would be fun to have over for a beer.  So what are you doing Saturday? No seriously – what are you doing Saturday? We need help painting the house since I scraped the paint off of it.
  • Also, I would not tell all of Twitter or FB that you were over at my house having a beer. People need to have some R&R time. Mainly, me. Who wants to be tweeting schtuff when they could be having a beer with Sam LeCure?
  • I am the youngest of 8 siblings also. Which means, I know what that means at a dinner table. If you come over for beers, I’m sure to have food too – and we can race to see who gets to seconds faster. Wouldn’t that be fun?

 

  • On my birthday last year, I met Dusty Baker & Gary Matthews. They were out having dinner and everyone around me kept saying ‘isn’t that Dusty Baker?’ and I kept saying ‘no – but that is’ and pointing to the back of a guy’s head. After dinner, they came over to us and were REALLY NICE spending a few minutes talking and letting pics be taken. Gary Matthews sat down next to me, and I asked him if a ring he had on was a World Series ring. He said ‘No, honey, that’s a loser’s ring. Put out your hand – ’cause it’ll be heavier than you think. That’s a winner’s ring.’ And then this happened: 20120903_211207 Gary Matthews  told me I could put his ring on and post pics to FB. HOW COOL IS THAT? My husband didn’t think to get Gary or Dusty in the picture, but I’ll show you my thumb so you can be sure that’s actually me in the photo. Also, this story has no relevance to this list at all – except that if you were a baseball fan and that happened to you, wouldn’t you tell that story every chance you got? *nods yes*
  • Also, if you ever need a good lookout, I know what Dusty looks like from the back of his head.

 

  • I’m the kind of friend that wouldn’t tell you you were over 10 reasons on a list that started out as “10 reasons…”.

 

  • I’m working on learning how to take good pictures – a gorgeous weather day at GABP is a great place to practice my skills. I got a pretty good batch on 8/25. Among them were these.  I promise any bad ones of your butt will die with me. (Again, I promise I’m not a stalker – it’s just if I get good at capturing your fastball, then I can get probably get a good cheetah pic at the zoo or catch some great pics of my friends doing criteria races or Ironman competitions.)

 

IMG_2536_edit

Dear Xavier Paul, I am so sorry. But isn’t this a great picture of Sam? #pleasedontholditagainstme

IMG_2461_edit

Words of wisdom for the FNG Reynolds on his debut. Who wouldn’t like this #63 guy?

IMG_2542_edit

100% badassery.

So, Sam, that’s what I got for now. But if you don’t get to me this week, I understand – hope you know it’s all in good fun. 🙂

 

  •  

     

So peeps, if you follow me on twitter, then last night you probably saw me post this in #Runchat*:

“My #Runchat brag: I do open calls for anyone needing encouraging words, then I deliver them. If u need encouragement, I’m your girl!”

The organizers asked us to post something about ourselves that made us proud of who we are and this is what I wrote.

It’s okay internet. You already knew I was weird.

It’s a strange thing, to put out an open call to all the world – or as much of it as you’ve reached – and say – “do you need someone to cheer for you? do you need a kind push? someone in your corner? someone to tell you ‘you CAN do this!’?”  I think as we get older, we assume that people who commit to hard goals already have all the confidence they need – they no longer need the clapping and wild cheering that energizes children.  I also think we get less able to ask for what we need in terms of that clapping and wild cheering – we are ‘supposed’ to have the fortitude within ourselves to complete the tasks we’ve trained for. Fierce. independent. Strong. Warriors.

And yet – as friends get ready for the racing season – and several I know are doing Ironman competitions, first half-marathons, first marathons, tenth marathons – I hear the stomach butterflies begin to emerge. People posting about checking and re-checking transition lists, worrying about oversleeping starts, the ohmygodIdidn’tpackthechamoiscream! dreams.  We are warrior grown-ups with very serious goals.  But sometimes, we still feel like the first day of kindergarten inside.

Sometimes we still need to hear from someone else “It’s going to be okay. You got this. You’re ready!”.

A few weeks ago, I was in a great mood going into a weekend – and I threw it to the world Twitter – “Who needs encouragement today? I have encouragement to spare.” or something like that (I don’t even want to read my own Twitter feed that far back to quote it.)  – but anyway – I got a single response.  Someone I did not know.  They gave me a date and a race – even gave me a bib# for athlete tracking – and I made a mental note to follow-through on giving encouraging words. 

Friends, it was pretty cool!

I sent a message 2 days before, the day before – then through the race as I followed along on athlete-tracker. 

What did it cost me? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING ‘cept a few minutes of my time. 

What did it give that athlete? Well, only they really know. But I’m going to say, I know what being in a long hard run feels like, and sometimes, the encouragement of someone – even a stranger – can be huge. Knowing someone somewhere is rooting for you – it makes a difference.

I’ve done this same thing again a few times now – cast a net into the interweb asking who needs a kindness from a stranger. Sometimes I get nothing, sometimes someone reaches back and says ME! I DO!  I have yet to regret asking if anyone needs a cheerleader.

I did it again this past weekend and got a single response again – someone doing an Ironman on Sunday. Coincidentally, I knew a few other people doing that race – tracking one more just made it that much more fun for me (even more interesting – this Twitter connection ended up finishing right around the same time as a running buddy of mine – I bet they crossed paths in the race a bunch and didn’t even know it!).  A message the day before, a few messages through the race. I knew she wouldn’t see them until after she was finished, but so what? It still feels good to know someone was pulling for you when you were challenging yourself. Even if you don’t find out until the next day.

So what’s my point in all this?

Everyone needs encouragement to accomplish something.  And for everyone, encouragement is free to give. 

You just have to be willing to reach out your hand in either direction and go for a high-five.  So reach out peeps – put your hands out there – use the internet for something good – and help each other go get the dreams.

________________________

* This Twitter thing on Sunday nights called #Runchat, wherein 2 of our beloved running Tweeters (twits? I kid, I kid!) ask five questions related to running and runner-twits from all over the world post out their 140-character answers.  It goes on for all of 20-25 minutes and I think it is FANTASTIC! Not only have I gained followers of my own from it, but I’ve found some really good people to follow as well. It’s like a giant running community HIGH-FIVE to close out the week and start on the next one. Seriously – if you’re on Twitter – check it out.

I wrote a comment on another blog (if you don’t follow Cultfit you should) that I wanted to share over here too – mainly because this is something I need reminded of once in awhile.  So this post is kind of like a little post-it to my future self reminding me to be nice to me. What?

I’ve noticed – with myself – that when I WAS really hard on myself about every. little. thing. – it was because I had no discernment. I expected perfection from myself in everything. And because it was hard for me to love imperfect things, I was afraid that I could not be loved if I was imperfect. Thus the drive to perfection…and crazytown…and bitchytown…and unhappytown. When I started recognizing that there were imperfect things that I loved – that someone else could make a mistake and I could still love them – that these LOVEABLE HUMAN BEINGS are not perfect and yet still so lovely – I started letting myself be imperfect. Even embracing it. Wrapping my arms around all the foibles and flaws that make me uniquely me – including the ways that I completely screw things up sometimes. And in the absence of abhorring all the imperfection – the gap in negative space – came discernment. There are some things you should be really hard on yourself about. And you should say you’re sorry and do your best to make the aftermath peaceful – and then forgive yourself – because you’ve done all you can do. But these really important things that you should be hard on yourself about get lost in cacophony if you’re really hard on yourself about everything.

Pick your battles with yourself as you would a good friend. Forgive yourself as you would your child. For both of these things are within us and should be turned towards us.

image

The above is a shot of one curve in my office trail. I had about 15 minutes to get outside on my lunch (what lunch?) today so I didn’t get a run in, but went out for a quick walk. It is absolutely stunning outside and a good day to run the trail.

Except that I’m not convinced I can get a sports bra on & off without some help – and that would just be awkward in the office locker room…yikes! And pumping my arms on the hills & stairs – probably not a good idea.

The shoulder thing – it’s still bothering me. A LOT. And I’ve hit the point of cranky with it. I am used to the general aches & soreness that go with being an athlete. But this is a different kind of thing.

I’m not sleeping well because I can’t sleep on that side or roll over much at all without a jabbing pain waking me up. It hurts to do the stupidest, most mundane of tasks – like putting on a shirt, drying my hands on a towel, brushing my teeth.  And while I (just barely) managed to get a sports bra on and go for a run yesterday –  I got 4 slow miles in + a mile walking cooldown – I had to ask Eric to help me get the thing off when I headed for the shower. Also, I could feel it twinging when I ran – though moreso when I was walking.

And it’s only just a tiny bit better than it was the day after I did it. A tiny bit. Admittedly, it’s not even a full week yet, but OHMYGOD THIS IS FRUSTRATING! I am perturbed.

*sigh*

Dear shoulder, do you hear me?! I said *SIGH*.

Peeps, this past week and a bit…there just aren’t words.

Well, okay, there *are* words because obviously I’m blogging about it, but seriously – I’m just not sure I’ll find the right ones.

I think I stepped into someone else’s life last week.  Seriously. I think the unverse got confused last Monday and while I was showering, it heaped a whole bunch of muck that didn’t belong to me onto my life.

Do you ever have that? Those phases where one thing happens after another thing after another thing – and NONE OF THEM are consistent with life as you know it. Like all the bad stuff that normal people get sprinkled throughout the year were saved up for you to experience in this ONE WEEK because frankly, you had more than your share of good stuff lately.

And because you don’t deal with such things on a regular basis, you have no immunity to them. The events just wipe you out completely. You get into an exhausted haze of asking yourself  WHAT. THE. HELL. UNIVERSE? THIS ISN’T HOW MY LIFE WORKS. PULL YOURSELF TOGETHER! I’m the girl with the easygoing lifestyle, fab husband and zen dog. My life is easy. That girl over there – yes, her – she’s the one with awful miscommunications, lost paperwork, and health issues. Not me. Her. Go get her! Sick your poison on someone else. And at this point I smack universe on the ass and send it off on it’s merry way to go screw over that girl. Nope. Not happenin’.

In a nutshell, the above pretty much sums it up – awful miscommunications, lost paperwork and health issues. All things which, being a type-A analyst and pretty intense into the fitness, I am not familiar with. I’m very organized and very healthy. So color me confused when it all went sideways at once.

The communications issues I’ll spare you.  Mainly because the thing that got my attention the most was a problem with my eyes, and that’s what I want to talk about.

Last Wednesday morning, when I opened my eyes, I couldn’t see very well. Everything was blurry and I couldn’t seem to get my vision to clear.  Now – I’m pretty sure I had every right to be freaking out about this – except that prior to having Lasik, I was functionally blind without my glasses. When that’s your background, you kind of expect that one day you’re going to piss the universe off and wake up blind.  So, instead of freaking out, I just took a deep breath, said ‘maybe today’s blind day’ and got in the shower. Told myself that I’d panic if it didn’t clear up by the time I needed to go drive carpool to work. Which it did. So fine. For a few days prior, my eyes had seemed really dry and irritated and I’d been hitting up the eye drops – but this was a step beyond that. Cue the eye doctor. Not MY eye doctor. AN eye doctor. My last eye doctor left me sitting in a waiting room for 2 hours until I left without being seen and so I haven’t been back.  I have to track down an opthamologist that takes walk-ins on a weeknight who tells me that –

Somehow I’ve gotten a bacterial infection in both eyes.  Somehow. I have no idea how. In 38 years, this is new. Lucky me! I can still surprise myself!

As he’s clicking away on a keyboard, Doc asks me where I want a prescription for eye drops sent electronically.

Me: Um, I don’t know? I…don’t…have…a pharmacy. (why I’m saying this like I’m guilty of something, I don’t know, but for a second I actually do feel guilty for being healthy.)

Doc.: You don’t have a pharmacy?

Me: No. I don’t really get prescriptions for anything. (again, with the guilty voice) Can you just write me one – you know, on paper? I’d like to get this filled tonight and I may need to go more than one place since I don’t know the hours anywhere.

He had to leave to go track down an actual prescription pad. I’m fairly certain he also had to look up how to write a prescription too. Sorry Doc – I guess I’m old school.  It is close to 8pm, which is when the Doc’s office closes – this is important – and I have one stop to make before trying to track down an open pharmacy.  I finally get to the pharmacy around 8:20.  I drop off the scrip and go pick out all new eyeliners since I know I’m about to throw out any eye makeup I can recall using in the last month. 

AAAnnd I hear my name called back to the pharmacy. That can’t be good.

Pharm Tech: I’m sorry but we can’t fill your prescription. You see, your Doctor wrote the wrong date on it. He wrote it for TOMORROW – so you’ll need to come back tomorrow.

We banter for a moment – having a conversation which Eric later summed up as “Really, there’s actually a rule that says a pharmacist can’t fill a prescription FROM THE FUTURE?”. Yep. There’s a rule. Blame Dr. Who.

She volunteers to call the Doc’s office since in my words “their office closed at 8, but you know they’re still there finishing paperwork & emptying wastebaskets”. No answer.  They try another location for the Doc’s office – that location can’t even confirm that the first location exists. Great – I am now looking like I made the whole thing up in an attempt to get illegal eye drops.  PEOPLE – IT’S EYE DROPS! What the heck kind of illegal activities can you do with eye drops?!!

Finally, the pharmacist herself comes over to talk to me. I wish I could say that I were nice or eloquent and perfectly respectful, that I handled things with grace, but I can’t say any of those things. I was exhausted, hangry (it’s way past dinner now), and just awed by the experience. In exasperation, I look her in the eye, and say “This should not be this complicated. It’s a typo. If it were a typo on the year, I would understand, but it’s ONE DAY. I was in the Doctor’s office right down the street less than an hour ago. I just want to be able to see when I wake up tomorrow.” I must have really looked at wit’s end, because she agrees to fill the prescription.

Then I get called back to the window again. My insurance says I’m not covered for prescriptions.

GAAHHHH!

I pay for the premium insurance package at my office. I KNOW I’ve got prescription coverage but I’m too tired to care. I tell them I’ll pay for it and yell at the insurance company later. $106 later. The next day I call the insurance company and tell them what happened –

Insur: Did you give them your prescription card?

Me: I don’t have a prescription card. You’ve never sent me one; am I supposed to have one?

Insur: Yes. It looks like we sent you one in 2009.

Me: I’ve never gotten one.

Insur:  We sent you one in 2009.  You haven’t had a prescription filled since then? If you didn’t get it, you should have let us know so we could send another. I’ll send one to you. It will take about a week for you to get it.

Me:  No. I haven’t had to have any prescriptions filled since before 2009. Obviously. So, I was supposed to call you in 2009 to tell you that I didn’t get the prescription card that I didn’t know I was supposed to be getting so I wouldn’t have known to expect to get it and therefore, to call if I didn’t get it?

Insur: ….yes.

My new prescription card is on the way. In the interim, she gave me all the numbers I need to make the computers show me as covered for prescriptions.  In the interim, my prescription card is a post-it note in my purse that I can take back to the pharmacy that already thinks I’m a back-alley eye-drop dealing bitch loon and have them re-process the claim.

Peeps…peeps…*deep breath & sigh*

The stop I made in between the eye doc and the pharmacy was to spend about 30 minutes with a group of friends – one of which has a child with a significant lifetime illness.   In this same week, I learned that a person whom I respect greatly has involved hospice in his health care options.  What’s been on my mind the most through this whole experience is that those people have to deal with this kind of crap every. single. day.

Frankly, that makes me really mad. and sad. and just shaking my head. This is what happens when the lawyers and insurance companies run the universe. You can’t get your eye drops without a lot of B.S.

For me, a prescription typo and a lost card are an inconvenience – an annoyance. But dealing with those types of things is a WAY OF LIFE for others. Just to live. I cannot even imagine the grace that would be required to get through the complications of needing daily prescriptions and doctors visits on a regular basis. My friends, they have a lot of grace. Me – I thought I had grace. Now I have $106 eye drops and a sense of outrage that this is what people who are sick have to go through. And I know there is someone out there that is going to want to make some comment about Obamacare, but let’s just nip that in the bud right now, ‘kay?

I don’t really have a point to this other than to share the story. Like I said, it’s been on my mind. Bothering me. I am a healthy person, and an extremely lucky person, and for me – just trying to get eye drops was a soul-sucking endeavor. It was not a healing experience. For people that are really sick, that need these things every day, that need a healing experience, it shouldn’t be this complicated.

It SHOULD NOT be this complicated.

So, I meant to write this post last Thursday for “Thursday Series” but then decided to put it off to Friday because it would be the last day of the month and I thought it would be better on the last day of the month. A monthly recap thingy. (See how bad I am at this Thursday thing already?) Then I got busy with the yoga weekend thing and now here it is Monday. And the 3rd of June. Which is not a Thursday or the last day of the month. But I’m still thinking about what I was thinking about, so there’s that.

Awhile ago I started reading this blog about trail running and on a fairly regular basis, Eric – the author – would write about “Can-Do Moments”.  Those moments when you cross over the line between ‘can I?’, ‘maybe?’ to “Wow! I really can do this!.” I like that phrase – “can-do moment”.

I’ve been thinking about my own can-do moments a lot over the last week.  Life has been kind lately. Passing them out like candy to the point that gratitude is overwhelming me.

Originally, on Thursday  Friday, I was going to write about my own trail running. If you recall, at the end of April, I set my mind to mastering the trail at my office with a specific goal of getting out on that trail at least once a week. It’s a pretty challenging trail but it’s well maintained and gravel. The problems I’ve had with it are mostly about consistency – not getting on it consistently and somehow expecting my pavement time to make that trail easier. That doesn’t work. Inconsistency rarely works for me.

On Friday, I was having a long day and wasn’t feeling like my trail run. But I thought – do it and you’ll have the goal for the month. You can write that you did it  – have yourself a can-do moment. And I did it. I went out there that Friday and I buckled down and did my work and I was really proud of that. I had made it out on that trail at least once a week for all of May! GO ME! I’d seen deer multiple times. I’d been dive-bombed by bees. Crossed paths with chipmunks. Once, I passed some co-workers on a hill and later they stopped me to say how strong I looked running that hill – which was what made me think of the can-do moment thing. Not only am I running that trail regularly – but I’m looking good doing it! (Okay, so I’m a little vain.)

I’ll also say that somewhere in this month of doing these runs, they’ve stopped being a vendetta chore. I’ve actually started looking for forward to them except for when I don’t. I catch myself standing up in my cube multiple times a morning to look out the windows across from me and check the weather – thinking how pretty it is, how that air will smell nice (It smelled GREAT today!) and the sun coming through the leaves makes me happy. When I look out there, I start tapping my foot and calculating several times how many more minutes I’ve got until I can justifiably go to lunch and get this run done.

I’m really loving these trail runs. When I don’t want to do the trail run, it’s never about the trail. It’s always about something else – a deadline, a sore ass, not enough sleep. Never about running and never about the trail. Also, I find myself wishing I did more trail runs than pavement runs.  So there’s that.

Then this weekend came and I went and got myself all certified to teach yoga. I’M A YOGA TEACHER!! 200-hour course DONE! MAJOR CAN-DO MOMENT! And I’ve got a plan to start teaching 2 mornings a week before work. I’ve worked it out with my boss to make it happen. Peeps – this is a thing I am VERY HAPPY – capital letter HAPPY – about!!

Finally came today. After 2 intense 90-minute yoga classes over the weekend, I was sore. I felt good, but I was pretty sore in my core, a little sore in my legs. I thought to myself – just pack up the gym bag anyway. I always like to have a packed gym bag at the office. From my view over the cube, I saw a breeze running through the trees and sunshine on leaves and I thought – it looks pretty nice out there. Go, even if you’re sore. You’ll regret it if you don’t. So I went and as I got started I said – just get through the first mile. You’ll feel better when the first mile is behind you. And I did. Then I went into the loop and I thought three different times about cutting it short before I reminded myself –  You’re out here to get stronger – and this is how you do that, you don’t cut it short when it feels hard. You’re running up a hill – it’s SUPPOSED TO FEEL HARD if you’re doing your work.  So I ran the loop, and I went to the overlook and I almost talked myself into NOT going up the set of 20 steep stairs that mark the halfway point. But I said to myself – SELF, the top of these is the best part of this whole run. If you aren’t going up them, why did you run up here? So I went up them and I took the pause to survey all the land, watch the birds for a moment – remind myself what about this is a good idea –

when I saw her.

Two honey-colored leaf-shaped ears and big brown eyes looking up at me from a grassy low-spot – the dark green field grass so tall it was chest high to her and I couldn’t see her legs. A beautiful, healthy doe. So odd that she was all alone – I usually see at least 2 or 3 together, but I didn’t see anyone others near and she didn’t look sick. If I hadn’t made myself climb those stairs, I never would’ve seen her. And I thought to myself – what an awesome reward for doing my work today!

Then I took a deep breath, turned it around and started back – looking back to see her still watching me even as I got further away. Course reversed – it was the back part of the out and back – and usually the part I get tired. Back is harder. Maybe I should cut it short here? Nope – go do the run the way it should be done. You’ve got good weather today – this won’t last much longer. Enjoy it now. Make your left back into the loop and do the whole thing. So I did. Talked myself through the inclines that hurt and the steep parts that hurt worse and smiled when the down hill came. And just as I came through the final curve in the loop,

I spooked something in trees just in front of me, right before the path opens up. I caught a glimpse of honey-brown and knew my deer had taken the short cut I’d passed on. I’d dropped out of the loop about 10ft behind her and she’d trotted across the only piece of road I cross on this trail. As the bushes opened up I noticed she wasn’t alone.

The tiniest, sparkly white-speckled, knock-kneed fawn I’d ever seen was 3-ft from her. Both of them about 15-ft from me now.

She hadn’t been alone in the grass – the grass had just been taller than the fawn. Peeps – it was soooooo pretty my eyes watered. Up until mama turned and licked little’s butt. Awk-ward! C’mon – this is real life, not Disney. Apparently, deer mommas lick fawn butt. There you have it. I decided to un-see that part. I stopped and waited for mama to pick a safe direction – and for her and little to move off the trail – little stopping one last time to take a good look at me.  How could I not be completely awestruck? Friends – seeing that was a better reward for doing all my work the way I should have than I ever would’ve asked for. If I hadn’t done every little bit of that work, and let myself enjoy it – my timing would’ve been off and I wouldn’t have gotten to see any of that.  If I’d said – hey, I’m tired and I worked out all weekend, I’m skipping it – I wouldn’t have seen that. If I hadn’t committed to this goal of mastering this trail, I would’ve cut it short and then shorter, and missed all of that.

Knowing that you got to see something AMAZING because you did all your work and you’ve been dedicated to your goal.

Friends, that’s a can-do moment. Humbled, amazed, lucky, proud, in trail love. All at the same time.

And the Summer is just getting started.