The Bolder Boulder is probably my second favorite race in all the world (no one can top Disney races, sorry…no-line pictures with characters?!?). In 2008 it was my first race “back” and I trained so hard for it. At that point, I had never raced anything longer than a 5K. I ran a 55:54 that day and remember every step. I remember that I had no watch even, so I had to wait for the official text message with my time, which came when we were out to breakfast to celebrate (we still did that then). I was so full of joy and so very proud of myself. Then came those dark months full of miscarriage and loss. I didn’t turn to running to help me cope, but I eventually figured out that I needed to. Once I got going again, I had to stop, because the soon-to-be Ainsley demanded it with her partial placenta previa (I should have known this was the first in many “demands” she would make…oof, this kid is tough). I knew I’d get back to it once she was born and I did. I dragged my seriously chubbed up self out there and trained. I ran BB in 2011 and pr’d the course by 5 minutes. In 2012, I pr’d it again by 3 more minutes. And in between those races, I pr’d 5ks and 10ks like they were candy, ran my first (and second and third) half marathons, and my first full marathon. I have run the BB with full training, with three full weeks off ahead of time, with some running here and there, and no matter what I still loved it.
And somehow, some way, it’s time for the Bolder Boulder again.
A spring full of running has worn me down. I suspect I’m a bit overtrained and could use a break, but here’s the thing: I love the Bolder Boulder. I love races. I am registered for another full marathon in the fall (whaaaaaat?!?). So I’m going down there tomorrow, and although the temptation to just move on down in waves and have fun, I’m going to toe the line with my BA wavemates and come hell or high water, I’m going to race. The pictures at mile 4 will probably again feature me with my closed eyes, open mouth and terrible form. The sun will probably come out juuuuust as I come down Pearl Street, blinding me and making me question my sanity. My quads will probably burn coming down Folsom Street and my GOD no positive thinking can erase the torture of that damn hill into the stadium, but I’m going to do it. I’m going to laugh at clever signs, I’m going to want to stop for bacon and beer, I’m going to be jealous of the slip and sliders. You know why? Because I’m a runner, damnit. Despite starting my racing career in last place (that’s a true story…my first cross country meet ever, I was dead effing last), I’m going to do the best work I can tomorrow. And I’m going to love the Bolder Boulder.
It had to have been the random blog post, because nothing else was different. Yesterday morning, I woke up with food hangover (or so I thought), because I ate allthedessert. I had a brilliant plan to wake up, go to my 8:30 am dentist appointment, go for my 5-miler from the dentist’s (conveniently located 5 steps from local trail), shower, go get Megan from the airport, have lunch with a friend who I haven’t seen in AGES, and go see a couple of friends play at a local bar.
I should have known it would all go wrong when I got to the dentist’s and the receptionist told me, “oh, we have you down for 9:30!” Ok, really no biggie, I’ll just run now. So I did. And I felt craaaaappy, but again, suspected food hangover, right? I came back to sit through the not-enough-flossing lecture and then drove home. Where I HAD TO LAY DOWN NOW OR I WILL DIE OMG, but I had to go get Megan. So I jumped in the hot hot hot shower (should have known…why can’t I get warm?), came downstairs, took one look at my husband and realized there was no way in hell I was going to the airport because I couldn’t really see him anymore. I was quite literally blacking out.
Cue the rest of the day: wishing (out loud) to die, so that the pain would stop. The stomach cramps, the head pounding, the fact that every square inch of my body hurt. I had some very interesting fever dreams – like the one where my legs just needed to build the David sculpture? – but really, that was a 24 hours I could have done without, ya know?
I’m better today, but am more tired than I was post-marathon, which is a super bummer, because I was having a hard enough time staying motivated to run lately. I don’t need anymore reasons to sit on my butt. But I guess I’ll take this one and maybe just blog some more?
Blogging and stuff. Sorta.
You guys. (if you’re still there) I have no excuses. I’m lazy. All I’ve been doing lately is depending on everyone else in blogland to entertain me, and I’ve not returned the favor – although, I can almost guarantee that no one I’m reading has linked back to me. But just in case there’s anyone out there who still cares, here’s what’s up (cripes, the bullets…again. I’m sorry):
*teaching: doing it. Love two of my classes, tolerate the other three.
*momming: doing it. Love all three, want to kill one, tolerate the other two.
*wifing: doing it. Love the one. Don’t want to kill him. Today.
*running: doing it, when I want to. Not doing it when I don’t. My marathon in Arizona was A-MAZE-balls and I’m not sure where I want to go with that. I SO want to BQ (that’s “Boston Qualify” if you’re like most of my irl friends and don’t know the lingo), but that’s a loooong 7 minutes, especially when I already have other travel plans for the fall.
*the rest of life: well…I’m working on it. I’ve been pretty disconnected from friends and family, which has given me time to work on my kids and hub. I’ve been slacking on reading. I’ve been traveling like a fiend. I baked today and it was holy YUM. I need to do more of that.
So, that’s it. I’ll try harder, y’all. Here, look…I’ll post an actual PHOTO. From my race. Where I seriously loved running. Don’t I look happy?
If you know me, you know that for the past four years I’ve been slaving away at being student council adviser. If you’ve been reading this blog, you’ve probably rolled your eyes at all my complaints about the hours, the kids, the parents, the drama. So sorry about that. I finally did give it up. In fact, I’ve pretty much become one of “those” teachers – I roll in at 7:10, teach, then roll out as soon as I can (which, before you decide to bitch about how I’m overpaid, is usually 5:30 pm, when Megan is done with practice and I’ve *almost* caught up with grading). It’s been nice…the weekends belong to me again. I don’t get text messages from students panicking about fabric color. I’ve only had one voicemail at school this year and it was from a student. I’m nearly anonymous. But here’s the thing:
I don’t like being anonymous.
I realize this sounds stupid. After all that complaining and now I decide I miss it?!? Yes. Let me be clear. I miss the kids. I miss the fun. I miss being involved in the things that make our school such a family. Not being a part of, well, everything is foreign to me. Our back to school assembly about drove me to tears. So today, during the homecoming assembly, I went to Target. I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t walk in there and see how everything had changed. How my kids were someone else’s kids. It would be so much easier if I wasn’t here, but I *am* here. And I feel like a fucking fool.
It’s not that I think I could do better. It’s not that I don’t think “my” kids aren’t doing a great job. It’s not that I want to take it back, because my goodness, is it nice to hang out with my own kids. I just miss it. And I very quickly need to find a better way to handle it than retail therapy.
Remember when summer vacation used to be three months long? When school didn’t start until after Labor Day? Ah…those were the days. This year I have to be back at school on something like August 15! There are only seven weeks of break left. Seven. And two of those are spoken for – a week of student council camp (yes, I know I gave it up, but I’m on the committee for the state, so I’m sort of expected to be at camp) and a week of AP training. Which leaves only five weeks. Five weeks to mentally, physically, and emotionally prepare for the coming year. Because let’s face it, as a teacher, summer isn’t about taking a break from school. It’s about taking some days off and then thinking about, reading for, planning out the coming year. I will have three preps next year, one of them brand new to me, and I have a ton of work to do. I just hate the thought of using MY time to do it. I’d much rather do what I do now – run, watch a little Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, sip coffee, cruise the internets, read for pleasure, play with Ainsley, clean up the house (did I say that?!?), maybe run to the store, and generally let my day do its own thing. You know…stuff like this:
The kind who never makes her kids feel small by yelling at them.
The kind who willingly does crafts on the weekends.
The kind who has a spotless home.
The kind who grows vegetables, cans and jars said vegetables, and can keep flowers alive.
The kind who has infinite patience.
The kind who manages to always find time for others.
The kind who never has a mean thing to say about anyone.
Instead, these beautiful daughters got me. A mom with a temper. A mom who only truly cleans house once a year. A mom who will try to persuade the kids to read rather than paint because she doesn’t want the mess. A mom who will leave for a week at a time. A mom who yells. A mom who is selfish.
Honestly, I know it’s futile to compare myself with others. I know there isn’t an ideal mom and there certainly is *not* a right way to do things. It doesn’t stop me from wanting. Could I do all those things? Probably (well, maybe not the patience thing). Will I? Probably not. Because there are lessons to be learned from my perceived imperfections: It’s okay to tell the world how you feel. People sometimes say what they don’t mean, but it doesn’t mean they don’t love you. We all screw up – that’s what forgiveness is for. Loving yourself means you can love others more.
Only a little more than six weeks until school is over. Something like 34 school days? I can do this. I have to do this. But I just don’t wanna. :::insert foot-stomp here:::
I’m not doing student council next year, which is giving up a second job (and taking a 10% pay cut – ugh). I can’t really explain how happy that makes me, but for the next month or so there is so much I don’t want to do anymore. I don’t want to go to school this Sunday for the Hair-Raising event – the event that collects hair to make wigs for cancer patients. Yes, I’m bitter about going to THAT. And I don’t want to go on senior retreat. And I don’t want to talk at our spring induction. I just want to quietly go away.
Of course, I can’t do that. Every move I make, I’m watched. Every action I take could have implications on me entering administration later. A good friend reminded me tonight that I have to keep the goal in mind, but I’m not sure what the goal is anymore. Why am I doing this? Teaching, I mean. Why? There are only about 20 kids I truly enjoy seeing every day. There are only about 20 teachers I truly enjoy working with. I hate papers. I hate parents (sorry ’bout that post, by the way). I hate the time. I hate whiny kids. I hate being so tired all. the. time.
I know I write about this a lot, this exhaustion and frustration, and I’m sorry. It’s where I am right now. Frustrated and exhausted. So hard to get through every day. And I’ve brilliantly added the marathon to the mix. Funny how the running feels like the least drain on me, isn’t it?
I promise to not stay here too long. There are a lot of positive things on the horizon, I just gotta get past this. Just gotta get through May 31.