Wednesday, December 29, 2010

In Case You Didn't Hear...

Alternately titled "How I Ended My Summer Vacation."

I don't love running.
There! I said it!
I don't like broccoli either.
It has taken me 38 years to realize this.
I want to love both of them, cause I know how darn good they both are for me...but I just don't.

Sometimes I like running.

There are those rare moments, (and half-assed runners like myself can attest to this fact) those limited occasions where you actually want to run.
Your heart races in anticipation, and your legs feel like rambunctious puppies, eager to be set free.
On these infrequent occurrences, it seems like you can fun forever. Until your iPod battery runs out, or your shoes shred, or the sun goes down. Nothing hurts, your breathing is even and deep, and life is good. Almost zen.
You can truly see why people love running.
This has only happened to me twice. In 38 years.
The rest of the time, when I attempt to run, I feel just like the couch potato that I am meant to be.
My legs feel like they are forged out of leaden ballast bricks. And what is that behind me? My enormous fifty pound butt. So. Hard. To. Drag...
My lungs burn like I have pneumonia, and I can literally taste blood.
My feet slap on the pavement, and I am counting the seconds until I can be done already!
I have a constant inner dialog:
"Let's walk for a bit, Mr. Heart's not doing so well..."
"Heart is fine! We are fine! Shut it!"
"Heart is not fine. Heart is flopping around like a dying fish..."
"Heart is WEAK! We are doing this for Heart!"
"Heart likes just walking. And slower walking."

So one day I decided to embrace my inner athlete and give a 5K a whirl.
Prior to the big day, I had never run a full three miles without stopping.
I had run plenty of broken up miles, one mile running, then a block or two of walking for Heart. Lather and repeat.
So that was my only goal for the day.
I told myself, "Self, just run the whole thing, you don't have to be fast, just run it all."
That was my only goal.
Oh, and to not vomit on my own shoes.
So I showed up that Saturday morning, with a banana swimming in the nervous pit of my stomach acid, sporting the shirt, my own pinned-on number, and a newly forged play list with butt kicking music.
There were some announcements, and sponsors to thank, and "There will be assorted donuts at the finish line...!!"
With the race route explained, we lined up, and the starting gun fired.
Within the first few minutes, the pack spread.
The real runners took off like gazelles.
Me and the rest of the middle pack started pacing ourselves.
The tail-enders consisted of grandmas with walkers, and moms with toddlers in strollers.
I knew I could take them on!
Courage! Confidence!
I had no idea what I was doing.
I just didn't want to burn everything off with my starting adrenaline.
So I kept a steady pace, slower than I usually ran.
Pretty soon I passed a few people.
I matched pace with a few people, and we would pass each other, and be passed.
Let's never speak of the 11 year old boy who sailed past me in flip-flops and a smug grin.
(I never saw him again...)
All too soon I realized I was nearing the finish line. For real.
And I was not dead, and I was not tired.
So I pushed it a little.
I think it was the donuts.
If I finished somewhere in the middle, all that would be left would be apple fritters.
So I passed one more guy coming into the final stretch, and crossed that line.
They handed me a ribbon, and wrote my bib number down.
Very anticlimactic.
I expected screaming fans and vuvuzela's and possibly a choir of angels!
I finished a RACE!
That I RAN!
That I ran the whole time! Without stopping!
My cousin had a camera with her, and caught the only photo I have of the day.
I hung around for a while.
Then I decided that I should probably go home and get started on laundry.
I was proud of myself.
And that whole day I felt like I was a runner!
I wanted to talk to other runners, about running!
I wanted to eat broccoli!

Later that afternoon, I went back over to check the stats.
Lo and Behold, a pre-Christmas miracle.
I took second in my age division!!
Granted, I was probably in the same category as the grandmas in walkers, but what the heck? I take what I can get.
It was my name, I checked twice.

And then, to my amazement, I got a phone call:
"Is this Shaunte Wadley? Hey, why didn't you stay for the awards? You took first in your age division, and second over-all..."
I guess when I checked stats, the "woman" who finished ahead of me, was actually the man I passed in the final stretch. He and his wife had gotten their bib numbers switched.

I am going to repeat myself. In case you didn't hear.

I am not going to tell you how many people ran it, or what my time was, cause I am pretty sure it doesn't exactly rank up there with such races as say "The Boston Marathon" or "Race for the Cure."
I took first.
And I am taking it.
Cause that's how I roll.
And I am going to brag about it for the rest of my days.
And I have given myself the fine gift of never having to race again, cause really, what is there to aspire to?
I already have a FIRST PLACE!
And a delicious jelly donut.

Monday, December 27, 2010

I'm Hiding from the Kids, with the last of the Chocolate.

I had all my kids really close together.
I am such a sucker for newborns!
When my babies turned 9 months old, I missed having a newborn, and like a complete moron, figured I should have another, you know, instead of skulking around the hospital and getting my fill, or borrowing one from a neighbor...
So we had all our kids really close, and as a result, they all go through "stages" one after another, with no break.
Let me explain that one a little better.
When we potty trained, it lasted FOUR! YEARS!

We are smack in the middle of braces right now. Also:
Teenage attitude.
Constant texting.
Oxy on the Spot Cream by the gallon.
And closet drinking parents.

This Christmas season marked a couple of big milestones.

One day, out of the blue, Sam and I got a good look at Jayden, (14) and discovered that he was sporting a partial 'stache. I am not sure how long it had been there, since we hardly ever see the kid.

As is the rite of passage, Sam gave him shaving lessons.

(Remember that I mentioned my beloved camera died? Well, I am not used to the new one yet. It has a setting on it for adjusting the white balance. Our bathroom is orange. Yes it is. And the setting options were for Tungsten Light and Florescent Light but nothing for Mexican Strip Club Neon. So deal.)
I am pretty sure he will not be needing to shave again for another six months, but Santa brought him a razor and Edge gel anyway.

His voice has gotten deep, and it is kinda freaky sometimes to hear a man downstairs when I know Sam is gone, and realize it is just Jayden.

The other Christmas milestone, was for Shianne. She is in sixth grade now.
She is starting to get curvy, much to the horror of her father.
For Christmas, she got her first make-up bag.
Starting her out on mascara (Great Lash) and lipstick.
She could not be happier.
She is a pretty girl and really doesn't need it:
I gave her some lessons, and cried a little inside.
"Go ahead and coat those naturally long, black, super-thick lashes of butt."

Of course all the kids have all crossed over to that Expensive Christmas Gift zone.
"I only want a couple of things this year, Mom."
An iPhone
iPod Touch and
(iDon't think so iDiots, iCan't afford that.)
Also...Stupid Apple!

They got what they got.
It wasn't that.
And when they can afford the stuff they really want, they should be well out of the house.

And speaking of well out of the house, they have another week off from school.
This can go one of two ways.
I will enjoy having them around, hanging out in PJ's--bonding; or I will quietly crack mentally from the non-stop bickering.
I am putting my money on the later.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Oops!... I Did It Again

I had good intentions.
I thought that by *not* blogging, I would have all this free time on my hands.

When I quit blogging, I printed out all my old posts and bound them into books. They sit on a shelf, and get more air time than any of the family scrapbooks.
Cause they are *one* book per year.
A manageable little time capsule of our family life.

When I quit blogging, I had envisioned hand-writing volumes of intensely personal family history, rich with deep thoughts, and words of infinite wisdom to bestow upon my posterity.

Never happened.
I don't hand write anything. My hand cramps up. I hate writing!

Truth was, 2010 was a super crappy year.

I didn't record anything.
I didn't really even take pictures.

I lacked the motivation! Who knew that this stupid blog of mine motivated me to at least document our paltry lives?

2010 was the year of broken bones, knocked out teeth, a dead camera, starting a business, lots of football games and beginning Wrestling.
It was also the year cancer touched our lives.
It was a year of sadness, balanced out with miracles.
It was a year that was not documented, and it needed to be.
It totally needed to be.

My kids would even ask "Are you going to put this on your blog?"

So, 2011, I am coming back, baby!
I am clearly too lazy to hand write in a journal.
Blogging has become the easiest way for me to get my feelings down.

Plus, I miss the validation.
Your comments make me feel like maybe I haven't been chugging down on the crazy sauce. Like maybe other people struggle with the same things I do...and let's laugh about it together.

If Britney can (sort-of) make a come-back, then I can too!
Although I will be wearing more clothing.