Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Eventually, if you wade through enough of it, you stop noticing the smell. (Thursday 13, the early edition)

Dear Diary,

13.  I mentioned last week that I had been in school continuously for 20 years, and a couple people commented to me on it. Yes, it's true.  I am that pathetic.  But part of the cure is admitting you have a problem, and I do: I am addicted to finisher's prizes.  At least now they are less expensive and help get rid of stress instead of causing it.

I can feel myself wearing down, and just in time, too.  I'm actually doing better than last year, when I was worn down by February.  I'm tired, depressed, anxious, and having bad dreams that involve rejection and abandonment.  I am, finally, and predictably, getting Too Old For This Shit.

I know it's just the whole grad school thing. I know it, but I can't feel it.  I just want to lay on a couch all day and do nothing.  I don't want to go anywhere, run, or write a paper, or make a phone call, or clean, or arrange.  Just lay.  And maybe drink cool, icy things. Which may, or may not, have ETOH in them.

12.  Saturday, I was bitterly disappointed to find out that Sweet Baboo got an email saying he'd been selected in the lottery for the La Luz Trail Run, and I had not.

Then.  A friend messaged me later to tell me my name is on the list, here:

So, I will begin training for this May 25th.  I'll still have a 50K to do in June, but other than that, I'm winding down for about a year of shorter distances and speedwork.  I'll still be running 5 days a week, but for much shorter distances.  I'll probably be keeping a 50K training plan recycling throughout the 2011-2012 school year while I'm interning.  My goal: Sub 2 hour.  Which, if you recall the profile, is quite ambitious.

11.  Saturday I ran a local half marathon while Baboo ran a 10K.   I had to run 15 miles Saturday, per Coach Baboo, and this seemed like a good way to do most of that, so he signed me up.  We like to support local races whenever we can, for reasons I'll mention in a bit.

It was beautiful, cool and just a bit breezy, and other than the smell of horses, the run through Albuquerque's North Valley area was lovely.  We ran past vineyards and farms and over acequias, and YES ALBUQUERQUE HAS THOSE THINGS, RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE TOWN AND THAT'S WHY I LOVE IT SO and underneath old, old cottonwood trees that arched high overhead, providing shade.

We finished at a local elementary school. It was one of those lovely local races where you get to see people doing their very first race of some distance, and their friends and families hold signs and cheer wildly for them.  I think everyone, no matter what distance they wind up doing, should support local races.  It's incredibly inspiring to see people doing their very first anything, whether it's a half marathon, 10K, or 5K.

10.  Sweet Baboo also did a race at the same time; he did the 10K.  It was on the same route except that halfway through they turned into another direction.  His race started 15 minutes after mine and so, predictably just before his mile 4, he blew by me at what seemed to be a dead sprint.

Trust me, it was startling to see him running that fast - he was running faster than others around him but was much larger (Remember, he's 195 lbs and 6' tall). He is qualifying for a military running team by running a 44-minute 10K.  I can't even imagine being that fast--I'm still trying to break an hour on my 10K time.
My time for the half-marathon was 2:16 and some seconds, by the way.  I was holding my own the first 7 miles, but then I started fading. Next time, I need more water.  And faster legs.

9. This past weekend I had my last big weekend.  The marathon Saturday was followed on Sunday by...nothing.  My legs hurt, especially the upper part of my quads.  So, I rounded out a 36-mile week.  Yes, it does still freak me out to see that written, even when I write it. I can still remember the first time I freaked out of a "5 mile slow jog".  It was supposed to be more, but I'm having trouble with energy.

8.  Last Friday a kid ran by my office, closely followed by people talking into radios.  They tend not to run, as there's not a whole lot of places where he can go, so they run in a loop.  When he ran by again they were further behind.  He stopped and threw a small rock at me, hitting me squarely in the right side of my $5 reading glasses.  Good thing I had them on.  I'm imagining his treatment review:

The client's strengths include good hand-eye coordination. 

Because, you know, it's all about focusing on strengths.   

7.  A woman asked me recently how I lost weight.  What could I say?  No, it wasn't easy.  No, I sometimes will think about chocolate cake. The woman, who is large for her height, said that she just couldn't see depriving herself.  Yes, it's true, I do deprive myself at times.  But I know the following is true:
  • In life there are choices.  I made mine.
  • There will always be chocolate cake.  I choose when and how to have a taste.  
  • Chances are, the craving will pass.  It always does. 
6.  "Ever wish vegetables didn't taste so vegetal-y"?  Says the V8 splash commercial.  Uh, well, no.  I like it that vegetables taste vegetable-y, just like I like that potatoes taste potato-y, and chicken tastes chicken-y.  If I want something that tastes Fruit-y, I'll eat fruit.  Thanks.

5.  Last Thursday I woke up at 3 am.  No idea why, but I couldn't get back to sleep.  I lay there for an hour or so, and then went out in the dark and ran 4 miles.  During my run, several cars stopped at stop signs, and even though it was dark, they saw me.  Because they, you know, STOPPED.  at the STOP SIGN.
But not this guy.  No, the guy in the old geep grand cherokee blew the stop sign, and then slowed somewhat for just a second when he saw me.  Then he went ahead and turned in front of me.  I smacked his car with my open palm.  yes, he was so close that I could simply lift my hand and do that.  I didn't reach.  He blew his horn at me.  Baby.

Then, for some reason I cannot fathom, he drove up the street, turned around, and drove up alongside me to give me a lecture.  Now, I really wanted to say, you blew the stop sign.  Now go blow yourself.

But because of my new year's resolution, *I* am a calm person in charge of her faculties.  So I waved as I ran while he rolled alongside me, and I called out repeately, Have a nice day!  Have a nice day!  Finally he gave up and yelled "dumbass" and drove away.  Ooo. Ouch.

That was fun.  If all I have to do to piss people off is be nice to them when they are steaming mad, then there you go.  Win-win.

WHAT is up with people like that?  Seriously.  If you go to the trouble of turning your car around to follow someone on foot and tell them how they should behave, how sad is your life?  

4.    Thursday, I blew off my afternoon run.  I hadn't seen my doggie all week in the sunlight.  I was tired as hell.  I also wanted to make a special meal for my daughter to celebrate the fact that SHE GOT A JOB, YES, THAT'S RIGHT I got the internship.  I won't tell you what we ate.  It was a bit of hedonism.  Okay, I'll tell: it was a couple of bacon-wrapped fillets from the local commissary.

At one point, she looked at them and reported that her father (who I haven't been married to for two decades) told her that these were too small, and that he could eat several of them.  Well, of course he could.  Most of us could.  That's not the point.  Yeah, no shit.  But I have tried to teach my daughter two important rules in life, and one of them is: Just because you can eat all of it doesn't mean you need to do so.  Anyway. We had the tiny fillets, and I talked to her about eating it slowly and enjoying each bite, because when you do that, you don't need more food.  We also had steamed vegetables and baked sweet-potato fries.

3.  Oh, by the way, the other rule I've tried to teach her is: Just because you can get it on doesn't mean it fits. Words to live by.  They should be posted, like, EVERYWHERE.

2.  I met some kids this week that, frankly, reminded me of how awesome I have it.  That's it.  That's all you're getting.  HIPAA, you know.  Okay, so I'm a bleeding heart.  Bite me.  Seriously, what do you expect from someone in my line of work?  I don't know too many Social Workers that AREN'T bleeding hearts
But.  I'm a bleeding heart whose politics are based on evidence, not the "energy" I feel.  Not the "gut feeling".  Evidence.

1.  What I am about to tell you will make you hate me.  A while back SweetFace came for dinner and was playing with his new iPad. As he is my son, SweetFace is a serious tecchie gear whore.  I tell you, I was smitten.  I have absolutely no reason to buy one of these things; I mean, I've finished all my coursework DID YOU READ THAT, HAVE I MENTIONED THAT I'M FINISHED WITH ALL MY COURSEWORK, but I jokingly said to SweetFace, you should give your dear old mother this for mother's day.

"Why should I do that?"

Because they wouldn't give me any drugs and you were nearly 9 pounds.  

We laughed.

Then, a couple weeks later, Daughter joked with him about getting me one.  He pondered that for a while, and then said, "I think I will."


Well, it turns out that as a teenager back in '02, SweetFace wanted a particular motherboard of mine, so unbeknownst to me he swapped it out with another motherboard that had a lesser processor.  It was off a PC that I wasn't using at the time, and I don't remember it, so I must not have been aware of it. (Sign of a true nerd, by the way.  He didn't break into my room to steal money or prescription pills, no, he took a motherboard.)

It furthermore turns out that himself the SweetFace has a low threshold of guilt tolerance. As well, he wants a new 2G ipad and only by giving me his 3-month-old 1G iPad can he justify that.
I, of course, am torn.
  • Do I be the "good mother" and say, "don't spend all that money on me?" or 
  • Do I acknowledge that yes, he was a pain in the ass teenager and so I'm totally entitled to cool stuff, being as I raised him alone most of his life? or
  • Do I simply allow him to assuage his guilt by accepting a very expensive (and very cool) trinket?  
The tie-breaker, of course, is that it's INCREDIBLY COOL AND I WANT ONE.  

So, in addition to the new Garmin 310XT that Baboo brought me, guess what else I'm getting for mother's day? :)  Yeah, I know.  You hate me.  Go have some kids of your own and instill work ethic and low guilt thresholds.  It will take about 20 years, but it's totally worth it.

[soon to be sent from my iPad. if there's an app for that.] 



  1. Enjoyed this whole post, but got lost in the sweet potato fries (yum), came back around for the iPad2 discussion.

    My husband just bought an iPad, I didn't think it was a need. But, oh how I loved downloading a book that I absolutely had to read, when we were on vacation in Fiji two weeks ago!

  2. This is awesome. Take that iPad and Garmin and enjoy the heck out of them.

  3. your ipad will be fab.

    and now, I am feeling SO SORRY FOR MYSELF now that mothers day is coming. geh. I wonder if there's an app for that?

  4. You often make me laugh out loud. Thank you! I love your perspective on life and envy all your cool running events. You deserve all the good things coming your way lately. As long as you promise to post at least once a week!! Enjoy the ipad!

  5. Great post! I can only hope that in 15 years my sons will realize that I deserve an ipad!!

  6. Coming back to this, I have to say that I need to just print out this post and tape #7 and #4 to my mirror...and refrigerator.

  7. do you follow a training plan for you 50k? I would like to do one later this year but i can't find a training plan that seems long enough.. What do you use?


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