Archive for 2014

#Microblog Mondays - A very Paleo Holiday

Monday, December 15, 2014

#Microblog Mondays?  Read more about it here!

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There are not many things that I like about CrossFit, as you all know very well by now.  The one thing that I can honestly say that I am grateful to CrossFit for is the Paleo type of diet that we have been following for well over a year now.  Sure we are not perfect 100% of the time, but we eat a lot healthier because of it and we feel better, too. 
 
Cutting out gluten has made me realize that I may, in fact, have a sensitivity towards it.  When I eat a regular cookie (with flour/wheat) it doesn't take long for me to feel like total crap afterwards.  Seriously, I get stomach pains, some yucky bloating, and have to lay down.  Not fun.  Especially for someone who loves baking and eating Christmas cookies like I do.  In the past, I have taken days off work to bake cookies around the clock for days and days (no joke) to give as presents to family, friends, and coworkers.  Sure it is very tiring, but I love it.  I miss it. 
 
Getting into the spirit!
 
I have decided to continue the tradition, but with a slightly different twist.  I'm making Paleo/gluten free cookies this year!  In past years I would make 13-15 different kinds.  I am going to have to scale that back this year due to cost (almond flour ain't cheap) and time constraints (20 month old anyone?).
 
Here is the list that I am working on.  I plan on baking this weekend Fri-Sun.  I'll check in next week and let you know how it went.  Crossing my fingers!!
 
 
Who says Paleo can't taste good?


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Normal cycles returning?

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

No one may find this interesting at all so I am pretty much just documenting it for myself.  After having my first two post-baby cycles at 47 days each, I finally had a cycle of a more normal length of 34 days.  It might sound long to you, but this is the first "normalish" cycle (non-drug induced) that I have had since my miscarriages.  So, that means that it has been since 2011.  Wow.


I am still not temping or anything like that.  We are not TTC now (or possibly ever again), but it would be good to track my cycles for prevention since I have no plans to take any birth control.  We'll see.  I feel like if I take out the thermometer my husband is going to get suspicious and feel like I am trying to pull something.  Haha. 

On the subject of birth control, a few things I have noticed about my body since I have stopped taking it and let my cycles be as they will...  The major thing is the pre-period insomnia.  This is BAD.  I never get insomnia, but the past 3 cycles have provided me with several total sleepless nights.  Not fun.  I G.oogled it and apparently it is a common problem caused by hormones.  Who knew?  Definitely not a problem that I had while on birth control for 10 years.

I also have much worse PMS (my poor family).  I get super testy and more emotional than normal.  I am not the most emotional person, although I will admit that I have gotten to be more so since having a child.  In the few days before my period, I get mean and then weepy.  I never had PMS while on birth control.  I was always super even-keeled.  This whole emotional thing is a new challenge for me...and my family.

I actually have a sex-drive and it peaks when I am ovulating.  I recognize that this is just biology, but I NEVER had any really strong desire to have sex while on birth control at all.  Of course, I would, but it wasn't like I was ever really that excited (nice pun) about it.  This makes things potentially dangerous and condoms a mid-cycle necessity!

Another nice non-hormonal by-product is increased flow.  While taking  birth control I had very light 2-3 day periods which would start with spotting.  While not taking it, I have 4-5 day flow with no warning flood-gate onset like when I was in high school.  I woke up in the middle of the night to blood soaked pajamas during my last cycle.  Seriously?!   

The last thing I notice are the CRAMPS.  YUCK.  I did have them while taking birth control, but they are oh so much worse now.  So much worse that I have contemplated calling out of work sick. 

Anyways, now you all have the 411 on my cycle.  Have a great day! :o)   

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#Microblog Mondays - A case of the 'Mondays'

Monday, November 24, 2014

#Microblog Mondays?  Read more about it here!


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Glass is half-empty today...wah wah wah...Monday morning rant ensuing... 
 
I was up most of the night with a sick child (2nd night in a row).  Poor baby B has a bad cold and a fever.  He is staying home with Daddy today.  It will be nothing short of a miracle if we are all healthy for travel this holiday weekend.

It is pouring rain and my umbrella is broken.

I dropped my lunch and smashed my banana trying to juggle 2 bags, a coffee, an umbrella, and a security badge.

I have a hideous headache.

Work is sucking the life out of me.  Seriously.  Work.  You.  Can.  Shove.  It.
 
A co-worker of mine keeps taking candy from my candy dish to put into hers even though I have politely asked her twice NOT to do that anymore.  WTF?!
 
To try to better my shitastic morning...

Some 'Ladies and Gentlemen, The Best of George Michael' (yes, I'm a cheese-ball).
 
And this trio:
 
 Come on guys...help me out here.

Happy Monday everyone!

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#Microblog Mondays - The MuTu System (for diastasis recti repair)

Monday, November 17, 2014

#Microblog Mondays?  Read more about it here!


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Back in June, I bought the MuTu system in an effort to try to further self-repair my broken belly.  Since I don't really need help with the weight-loss and diet portion of things, I opted for the Focus Program instead of the 12 week one.  
 
Very gung-ho, I started it right around the time that I was ramping up my marathon training and you can probably connect the dots that I didn't get very far.  One only has so much time to spend on working out when they have a young child.  So yeah, I quit after a week.  I vowed to return after marathon training.
 
Here I am; my marathon is complete.  My diastasis recti still bothers me and I have heard nothing but good things about the MuTu System.  I'll try to check in regularly on this and will try to keep up with it.  Cross your fingers that I can make some improvements here.  Oh yeah and stick with it this time.   

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Back to body image (read at your own risk)

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Maybe it is because the marathon is over and I have a large amount of time that has been freed up due to the lack of training, which has given me more time to think. As fast as my negative body image went away, it decided to make a return with an evil vengeance.

My sister and I had a conversation a few weeks back about our biggest insecurities and issues. One of my biggest is my body, which as you all know by now, was exacerbated by the number that my pregnancy did on it. No matter what anyone tells me, I will always feel inferior. It seems that no matter how hard I work out, I still can't achieve the body aesthetics that I think "look good".

I have always been a perfectionist. I am not sure exactly where it started. Many people will argue that first-born children tend to be more "Type A". I would have to agree with this. As a child (just ask my mom!), I was always the best behaved, super-organized, and most responsible child of the bunch. I started ballet classes at a very early age and was taught that discipline and structure were two of the most important keys to success in life. I remember my dance teacher inspecting our lunches as we waited between classes or rehearsals. She would throw out food that she thought was going to make us fat even though I weighed under 100 lbs until I was a junior in high school, I felt like I had to adhere to those strict standards of eating throughout my teenage years. Getting into running junior/senior year of high-school kept me rail thin, or maybe it was the combination of being cross-country captain, track captain, school VP, school leadership member, honor society member, dance team captain, and the prom queen. I didn't really have any time to eat or obsess over my body. It just was what it was, but I was fine with it. I NEVER "partied" or got into trouble even though I was friendly and well-liked by most of the people at school including the most popular and the least popular.

Once I got to college, I did what you might refer to as rebel against my "miss perfect" lifestyle. I drank very heavily, ate total crap (and lots of it), didn't exercise, hooked up with random guys, and started getting bad grades because I either didn't go to class or I fell asleep during it. As a result, I gained a lot of weight freshman year. So much weight, if fact, that if you were to look at the picture on my college ID and a look at a picture of my taken last week, you would swear that it was not the same person. When I started dating my husband, I had settled down a bit and lost weight and although I wasn't the specimen of fitness, I had youth on my side.

In my mid-late 20s I started running a lot more and got into racing, marathoning, and healthy eating. My husband and I went to the gym almost every day of the week...together. He would go lift weights and I would do some cardio and light-weights. I would eat bags of veggies for lunch and cut-out all harmful fats and sweeteners. Looking back on pictures of myself during that time now, I think I looked really great. The best in my whole life, actually. Muscular, but lean. I remember a high school classmate commenting on a FB picture that I had posted and him saying how great I looked at that time. I ate that up, but deep down I didn't necessarily believe him. I could always look a little better.

Enter the world of miscarriage and infertility. Thinking that we would pop out a baby by the age of 30 due to our super-healthy-lifestyles turned out to be a total mind f*ck.  I gained weight, lost muscle, lost pride and self-respect while trying to have a child.  I started to really loathe my body in a way that went much deeper than its outside appearance.  I can remember the absolute darkest day of my life.  I had just gotten home after finding out that I was losing my 3rd pregnancy.  I called my mom hysterically crying telling her that I wanted to die.  It was hard to get words out to express everything, but I know that she was incredibly concerned.  I was so angry with my body.  I remember thinking that I would so much rather be dead than have to deal with this again.  I got into bed and put the covers over my head and wished so hard that I would not wake up.  That was the absolute worst and lowest day of my life.  I had never hated my body more.

Thinking that finally having a baby would fix all of my body-hating issues has proved to be untrue.  While my body finally decided to allow a child to grow successfully, it was not without lots of permanent "bruises" and battle scars.  I will never be able to get back to my 20-something body because, no matter how hard I try, I have imperfections that either can't be fixed at all or can only be fixed with expensive "cosmetic" surgery.  I am constantly reminded of what I won't have again when I am bombarded with images of the super-fit (and young or gifted in the gene department) women on a regular basis. 

Last weekend was the perfect storm of body-hating resurgence.  A huge "party" at my husband's CrossFit gym in which several (as my husband refers to them as) CrossFit pin-up ladies were in attendance (Google if you are interested in what this means).  They were all scantily clad in sports bras and almost see-through spandex booty shorts, sporting golden tans, washboard abs, doing squats and hand-stand pushups while all of the guys, including my husband, and all the girls for that matter, had to clean up the drool that landed on the floor beneath them.  My MIL, who came at my husband's urging, loudly proclaimed that all of those women were "gross and manly" and she would "never want to look like them".  Even though several people around us gave her the stink-eye, she got a few extra points in my book.  One of the pin-ups, who I found out was recently married, was shamelessly flirting with several guys.  Other married guys were flirting with other ladies that were in attendance.  The whole thing made me so uncomfortable.  I could not get out of there fast enough, not to mention I stuck out like a super modest sore thumb wearing long pants and a long-sleeved shirt.

Why am I comparing myself to these women that I wouldn't even really want to look like?  Maybe it is because I know that my husband thinks they are hot and I feel like I don't even come close to looking like them.  Maybe it is because I feel so self-conscious when naked and don't enjoy having sex like I could be because I feel terrible about the way my body looks.  I feel like they look so perfect and so they must have perfect (sex) lives, which I know deep-down isn't true, but I still can't shake the negative thoughts and the idea that things must be perfect for them because they look perfect.

Once again, another evening was corrupted with a heated discussion about CrossFit and how much I hate it last night.  The time commitment, the obsession, the overwhelming amount of super-fit 20 something women that work out 24/7 and put their bodies and looks above (seemingly) anything else in life that seem to want to wreck good homes.

I stopped therapy in the summer because it wasn't helping.  Maybe the therapist wasn't for me.  I'm not sure.  The thing is, I know what the issue is.  It is deep-rooted insecurity of my whole self with my body image being one of the top contributors.  I always feel like I am somehow not good enough.  I am not pretty enough or hot enough and somewhere deep down I worry that my husband might come to realize this someday and leave me because of it.  What I fail to factor into this scenario is the fact that my husband (obviously) married me for more than my physical self because there is so much more to life that how you look.  When we die, our bodies stay here and decompose.  No one is going to be stunningly gorgeous or having amazing washboard abs that guys fawn over when they turn 80 years old.  I mean come on, that is reality.  What will endure until death is personality, wit, humor, etc.  I just need to keep reminding myself of this when I start to get into that loop of negative self-talk.  I need to build up my self-esteem that my years dealing with body-betrayal took away from me.    After all, could one of those pin-ups run a difficult marathon in 3.5 hours with 30 mph head winds after a broken nights sleep (nursing an 18 month old)?  My body may not be perfect ever, but it can surely rise to the call of duty when it has to.           

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NYC Marathon Recap

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Are you ready to hear all about my NYC Marathon experience?  If you continue reading this, you will get to do just that and will probably learn more than you ever wanted to about it!

First off, let me explain how difficult it was actually getting to NYC for the marathon.  Period.  No, I am not talking about my car dying, or traffic, or getting lost.  In the week leading up to the marathon it seemed like everything that could go wrong did.

TUESDAY

  • As B and I attempted to go up and get ready for bed, he somehow managed to fall down 3 wooden steps and hit his head.
  • I panicked, called 911, and the first responders showed up.  
  • Long story short we ended up in the ER for most of the night.  Luckily he checked out ok in the end, but it wasn't without a ton of worry on the part of my husband and me. 
 
WEDNESDAY
  • Got a call from my mom letting me know that my Aunt had passed away.  She was old and had been sick with cancer for sometime, but it did not make things easier to take.  She always sent me a card on my birthday EVERY single year of my life with $5.  So incredibly sad.  
 
THURSDAY
  • Got a mid-day call from daycare telling me that B was throwing up, but with no fever or other symptoms.  Immediately I thought...concussion.  
  • Left work immediately and took him to the doctor.  He checked out ok, neurologically, though.  They told me that he might be coming down with something.
  • Got an email from daycare saying that a child was diagnosed with Coxsackie...again.  Uh oh.
 
FRIDAY
  • Had to keep B out of daycare (24 hours after throwing up) and fully expected to be dealing with HFM again, but luckily he never threw up again and actually behaved quite normally all day.  PHEW! 
  • I didn't get much work (or packing) done though since I had to watch him.

So that brings us to the actual marathon weekend.  I'm going to recount as much as I can so read at your own risk!


SATURDAY
  • Saturday morning, my Sister and BIL met us at the hotel and took the baby for an outing while my husband and I jogged to the marathon expo and got my number.  It was about a 4  mile run, round-trip, and it was raining pretty hard the whole time.  The expo at the Javits Center was insanity.  It was so huge, but very well organized.  I was able to get in, get my number, get my shirt, and then walk around to the different vendors before heading back to meet up with my Sister and BIL to grab some lunch.  I had to be careful not to eat anything that might upset my stomach so I stuck with an egg-white omelet with herbs (ok...I snuck a few fries), which was a safe and tasty bet. 
  • Saturday afternoon, we got back to the hotel and put the baby down for a nap.  Since there was really nothing that we could do while he was napping, we took a nap, too.  First nap I have had in a while and it was quite nice!  After the nap, I worked on decorating my race shirt with my name and laying out all of my stuff for the next morning. 
  • Saturday night, my husband ordered me an awesome half of a roasted chicken with sauteed veggies and roasted potatoes for dinner.  It was a perfect race night meal.  After eating (and getting the baby to sleep), I ordered a 4:30 AM coffee delivery, set my alarm for 4:25 AM and called it a night.  Thankfully I got an "extra" hour of sleep with the time change and B only woke up once.
 
SUNDAY MORNING, PRE-MARATHON
  • I woke up bright and early and started my pre-race routine.  The coffee was delivered right on schedule, which really helped to get me going.
  • I wore: a long sleeve Lulu shirt, w/ a Lulu bra & tank underneath, my black Lulu shorts (can you tell I'm obsessed with Lulu?!), Features socks, Zensah compression sleeves, my Nike Lunar Glides, cheapo black gloves, headband, RayBans, my Garmin, my homemade pace band for a 3:24 marathon (haha), a "throw away" fleece, and a "throw away" pair of sweats.
  • In a bag I brought: extra "throw away" sneaks to wear in case it was muddy, chapstick, water bottle w/ Coco Hydro in it, running "fanny pack", 2 packs of Annie's fruit snacks, a banana, baggie of cereal, applesauce, BodyGlide, 3 trash bags, hand warmers (x2 packs), extra toilet paper, an extra water, $60, credit card, ID, and my husband's phone (since I have the iPhone 6 plus and it is HUGE).
  • I headed over to the NYC Public Library to catch the 6 AM bus to Staten Island.  
  • Security was pretty tight, but fairly well organized.  They had police and volunteers checking bibs before you could get into the bus corral, again in line for the bus, and then again before you could get on the bus.
  • I felt like I was the only person from the US on the bus that I got on.  No one around me was speaking English!   
  • The bus ride over took almost an hour and about 40 minutes into it I realized I had to pee.  There was lots of traffic, even at that early hour.    
  • When the bus got to the "Athlete's Village" everyone filed off the bus and walked almost a mile to the village.  Security was even tighter.  We had to have our bibs checked and re-checked, had to go through metal detectors, and had to have our bags searched (and I think they also went through the detectors, as well).  
  • Of course, once I was in, I made a beeline for one of the hundreds of port-o-potties they had there.  
  • So I got to the village around 7 AM and my wave didn't start until 10:05 AM.  It was about 40 degrees, cloudy, and extremely windy.  Luckily I had brought trash bags and hand warmers with me.  I literally huddled for several hours in my trash bag along with thousands of others.  There was really no where to go to have the wind broken.  I sat next to a guy from Brazil for quite a while.  It was his first trip to the northern part of the US and, needless to say, he was freezing!
  • Waiting was so hard.  I was literally in denial that I was about to run a marathon.  My teeth were chattering and I just could not get warm.  It was a pretty miserable wait.
  • At around 9:30 AM they called wave 2 to get in line.  I made one last stop at the porto and then filed into the corral.  One of the most miserable things about the whole experience was taking off those "throw away" clothes!  
  • I pushed up to the very front of the corral and heard a few guys say that they were also in the wrong wave, meaning that they should have been in wave 1, so I felt like I wanted to stick with them.
  • They unhooked the corral gates and everyone pushed up to the starting line.  I was mid-wave 2, but tried to get as close as I could to the starting line once they took down the gates.
 
 SUNDAY MORNING, MARATHON 
  • The gun went off and it was several minutes before I started actually running.  I sauntered over the starting line since most people around me were barely moving.  This was exactly my panic-scenario...not being able to run because the people ahead of me were too slow.  
  • Going across the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge was beautiful, but so windy.  I was also very focused on passing people to get to a place where I could just run straight ahead.  Even though I told myself I was NOT going to weave through people during the first 3 miles, I did.  People were stopping randomly on the bridge to take selfies or pics of others.  I get that people wanted to commemorate their experience with pictures, but at least they could have stepped to the side to do so!  I clocked my first mile at 8:28, which was much slower than my targeted pace of 7:46 so I really stepped it up for mile 2 and hit 7:06.  BIG MISTAKE!
  • My 5k split was 23:47, which was an average 7:39 pace and still way too fast.  For some reason I got this idea in my head that I could bank miles.  Ha.  No.  In case you were wondering, it doesn't work like that in a marathon.  Maybe a 5k, but not the marathon.  Silly me.
  • Running through Brooklyn was exciting because my sister was parked on the course around mile 7.  As soon as I got into Brooklyn I started looking for her.  She said she had a sign so I figured that I would be able to easily find her.  Nope!  There were way more spectators that I ever could have imagined.  It was incredible.  People were blasting music and several punk bands played.  It was so cool!  I had my name on my shirt and it was incredible how many people were cheering for me as a result.  I felt super special!  :)
  • My 10k split was 47:29, which was a 7:38 pace.  Way too fast.  I felt good though until mile 6.5 when I started to get familiar shooting pains up my right calf.  Sh*t, I thought.  Not good.  I guess this is what happens after huddling in a trash bag for 3 hours and then then trying to pass hundreds of people while going up-hill from a dead stop.  Oops.
  • When I got to 7 miles I started to slow down to look for my sister.  I could not find her.  I looked from miles 7-9 and did not see her.  I was kind of upset, especially since my calf was seriously hurting me and I was starting to favor my left leg.  Seeing her would have really made me perk up, but no dice, unfortunately.
  • I didn't realize that so much of Brooklyn would be up hill.  This bothered my calf a ton.  I stopped enjoying the surroundings and started thinking to myself. "If I quietly slink off the course and take a cab back to Manhattan, will anyone notice?"  Then I remembered that lots of my friends and family were tracking me in real-time.  So yeah, that might have confused them.  I kept on going.  At mile 10 I ate one of my packs of fruit snacks and that gave me a little pick-me-up.
  • I got to the 1/2 Marathon point at 1:41, which made my average pace 7:44.  I was definitely slowing down, but I was still on track to make my goal.  I was very worried though because both of my legs were starting to feel heavy.  Cardiovascularly speaking, I could have gone faster, but my legs were just not having it. 
  • Around mile 15/16 my Garmin decided to stop working.  This was right after I had gone across the Queensboro Bridge, which in my humble opinion, was the most difficult part of the race for me and where the wheels started to fall off.  It was so windy on that damn bridge.  The wind blew dirt, dust, leaves, and trash at us.  The hill (which is the upside of the bridge) seemed to go on forever.  I passed so many walkers and dejected runners, but I know that I slowed down, too.  I had no idea how much I had slowed down though because my GPS malfunctioned.  This really hit me hard in the moral department.
  • Running through the streets of Manhattan was cool, but the wind made it super challenging.  There were points where I felt like I wasn't even moving though.  The miles felt like they were getting farther and farther apart.  
  • By the time I got to 30k, my time was 2:26.  I had slowed to a pace of 7:49.  I had no idea how fast I was going because I was so far off my pace band at this point.  I made the decision then to just finish the best that I could.  My legs were feeling really bad and it was a struggle to move one foot in front of the other.
  • Running on 5th Avenue was pretty awesome.  There were so many cheering fans.  Even though I started to go into survival mode and stopped paying attention to the little things, I did see this, which made me chuckle:
  • Those last 5-6 miles, second to the Queensboro Bridge, were the most abysmal.  By the time I got to 40k, I was really slowing down.  I hit 3:19, which is an 8 minute pace.  My pace between 30k to 40k was about 8:30 per mile.  You could say that I hit the proverbial wall at this point.  I was pretty devastated, but continued soldiering on because I couldn't give up now.  So many people around me had also hit the wall, but harder than myself because the amount of walkers that I passed was astounding.   
  • Running though the park and seeing the mile 25 marker gave me a renewed spirit.  In my anger and sadness about slowing down so much, I had forgotten about my goal of qualifying for the Boston Marathon.  I tried doing the math in my head (which, I'll be honest was not exact and quite difficult) and figured out that I might still have a chance.  I picked up the pace as much as my lead heavy legs would let me.
  • The course was marked with the last 800 meters, then 400 meters, and so I tried to play mental games with myself to say that I could sprint that out with no problem.  I passed people left and right and had several near misses with people that would randomly stop or zig-zag in front of me.  
  • Then I saw the finish, in all its glory, and I "sprinted" across.  I don't remember what the clock said because it was running from the first wave and was ahead of me by quite a bit.  I was just so happy to be done.   
 
 SUNDAY AFTERNOON, POST-MARATHON 
  • Walking through the finishers chute was a challenge.  I received my medal.  I got my finishers bag.  I got a Mylar blanket.  I shuffled, slowly, with all of the other marathon finishers through the park.  
  • It was at this point that I remembered that I had tracked myself on my husband's phone so I decided to take a look.  There is was (along with over 40 congratulatory text messages from family and friends).  My finishing time was 3:30, about an 8 minute average pace.  So far over my goal, but a solid Boston qualifier. 
  • I started crying because so many emotions hit me at once.  Happiness to have qualified for Boston (a life-long goal).  Sadness and anger to have come so short of my goal and what my coach thought I could do.  Pain because my legs had seized up and walking was so difficult.  Confusion as people tried to point me in the direction of the exit.
  • Getting out to the family reunion area seemed to take forever.  I just wanted to sit down with a cup of hot coffee and put my feet up.  I also cooled down very fast and started to get shivery.  I walked several blocks until they gave us a pretty sweet fleece poncho to keep us warm.
 The long walk...
  • I finally met up with my husband and the baby about an hour after my finish.  I had looked for them briefly during my last few beleaguered miles, but couldn't pick them out of the huge crowds of people that lined the streets.  I was SOOOOO happy to see them.  
  • We had to walk many, many, blocks back to our hotel because the roads were closed, no cabs were getting through, and there was no way I could walk down into the subway.
So there you have it.  I didn't quite hit all of my goals, but I hit some of them.  The race was harder than I thought and the conditions were difficult with the wind and all.  I heard somewhere that it was the slowest NYC Marathon since 1985.  That made me feel a little better.  I DID qualify for Boston and hope to run it is 2016 if I get accepted!

Thanks for all the congrats on my last post.  You all are great supporters!!  :)

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#Microblog Mondays - I did it!

Monday, November 10, 2014

#Microblog Mondays?  Read more about it here!

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It was incredibly challenging due to the really high winds, but I finished the NYC marathon!  I have been slowly creating a post about it over the past week, but I have been so incredibly busy at work and at home that I haven't had time to finish it.  I'm glad it is over with because my body is tired and is welcoming the rest, but I feel like I have a huge hole in my life right now where I spent so much of the last 6 months!  No goals or new challenges right now, which I tend to thrive on.  In trying to come up with something over the weekend, I came up with one that may be impossible, but who knows...a sub-19 5k.  Stay tuned!   

I made the New York Times!!

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#Microblog Mondays - Can I do this?

Monday, October 27, 2014

#Microblog Mondays?  Read more about it here!

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T minus 6 days and counting until the NYC Marathon (gulp).  To say that I am anxious about this coming weekend would be a huge understatement.  I am a basket case.  Second guessing all of my many months of hard work and dedication to this...  

Going to bed early EVERY Friday.  
Getting up early to run miles upon miles EVERY Saturday.  
Running before work.  
Running after work.  
Running while at work. 
Running while I should be working.
Eating healthy.  
Carbo-loading.
Sacrificing time with my baby and husband.
Sacrificing get-togethers with friends.  
Running through injury, illness and sleep-deprivation.  
Running in the rain, the heat, the cold, the wind, the daylight and the darkness. 
Running with blocked ducts, sore nipples and/or leaky boobs.
Obsessing over running (Did I run far enough, hard enough, long enough, smart enough?).
Washing the same pairs of $25 double lined socks thrice weekly because I love to wear them so much.
Wearing the same Lulu Run Swiftly t-shirt and black Lulu clearance shorts.
Dealing with my own headcase the past 2 weeks due to this "taper".

My lowest of low goals is to beat my best time of 3:52 back in 2007.
My goal is to qualify for the famed Boston Marathon is 3:35.
My goal based on what I think I can do is 3:30.
My reach goal based on my training and what it predicts is 3:25.
My former coach thinks that I can do it in 3:15-3:20.  This is my super-reach goal.

My positive mantra: "I can do this.  I will do this.  The pain is temporary.  The satisfaction is forever."

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#Microblog Mondays - Some random thoughts

Monday, October 20, 2014

#Microblog Mondays?  Read more about it here!

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Random thought #1 - Sooooo busy
Apologies for not keeping up with this (or my blog...at all, for that matter) for the past 2 weeks.  My life has been an insane whirlwind of late.

Random thought #2 - Marathon tapering sucks
I thought I would be loving this drop in mileage from a high of 50+ miles a week to less and less before the marathon in 13 days, but it is totally killing my self-confidence.  I am questioning my abilities and feel like there is no way I can meet my goal of 3:20.

Random thought #3 - My baby had a bloody nose in his sleep last night
When I went in to nurse him this morning, I saw that his white sheets had blood all over them and his nose was all blood-crusted.  Poor baby!  He is just like his Daddy, with the bloody noses.  time to bring out the humidifier again.

Random thought #4 - People in my office eat an ungodly amount of candy
No, really.  It is disgusting.  There are 3 candy dishes in very close proximity to my desk at work.  They are refilled at least twice a week.  I can honestly say that I never have any, but I do have a bowl on my desk so I guess I am contributing to the obesity epidemic.

Random thought #5 - Public transportation is disgusting
Ebola, Enterovirus D-68, Norovirus, flu, colds...I dread taking it every day, which is why I drove last week and spent almost $70 over 3 days (not including gas), compared to my normal $15 a day (not including gas).  People are just so gross and have no sense of common decency.  Coughing without covering their mouths, touching their mouth/nose/eyes then the rails, and loudly blowing their noses.  SO.  GROSS.

Random thought #6 - Paleo chili is AMAZING!
I made a paleo turkey chili last night and it was awesome.  Sauteed some onion, garlic, red pepper, jalapeno pepper with some ground turkey.  Added chili powder, cumin, coriander, cayenne, salt and pepper.  Added that with some diced tomatoes and crushed tomatoes into the crock-pot.  Three hours on high and boom!

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"Thank you"

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Since B started saying his first words, my husband and I have been very careful to make sure that the words that come out of his mouth are as polite as possible.  Yes, we occasionally slip up and use a swear word in front of him, but we are getting much better at censoring ourselves.

We have already been encouraging him to say please when he wants something.  Some of his first few sentences were "Up...PLEASE!" and "Help...PLEASE!"  I would be lying if I told you that the delivery of his "pleases" was polite because they are usually delivered in an agitated, angry, and impatient kind of way.  All in all, I think it is a good start.

B loves reading.  We read several books every night and there are nights when he refuses to go to sleep without a book in his bed with him.  After closing the door and shutting off the lights, I can hear him "reading" the chosen book of the night to his doggy, monkey, choo-choo, big doggy, and little doggy.  It is adorable. 

One of his favorite books is "Bear Says Thank You".  It is a very simple book, but it is supposed to help instill the foundation of manners in children.  I can honestly say that this $3.99 purchase has helped to do just that.

We have been trying to get him to say "thank you" after he receives something that he wants, like a toy, book, snack, drink, etc.  Sometimes he will say it right after he gets something and sometimes we have to remind him several times.  I think it is very important for children to be polite to others and to always express gratitude for getting something that they want.  It is how I was raised and how I continue to operate.  

Last night during our usual middle-of-the-night nursing session, I had one of the sweetest experiences with my little one, to-date.  He had just finished up on the second side and I was getting ready to pop the pacifier back into his mouth.  He looked at me with wide open eyes and said (in his baby voice) "thank you".  I was kind of thrown off by this because he has never thanked me for nursing him before.  I just assumed he figured that, at this point, it was just part of daily life for the both of us. 

I looked at him and said, "What, baby?" with a smile on my face.

"Thank you" he said again, clear as day.  Then he took the pacifier from me, popped it back in his mouth, and pointed to his crib.

Heart.  Melted. 

How incredibly beautiful.  I have been having a rough time this week, being sick with a cold and missing several days of work.  Getting up in the middle-of-the-night to nurse hasn't really been something that I had been looking forward to these last couple of nights.  This made it all worth it.  Any sacrifice that I have ever made to breastfeed (clogged ducts, mastitis, engorgement, sore nipples, bites, nursing-in-public semi-fiascoes, pumping, and pumping, and pumping)...forgotten.  This event, alone, has made everything worth it.


 XOXOXO

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#Microblog Mondays - Happy haircut!

Monday, September 29, 2014

#Microblog Mondays?  Read more about it here!

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I took the plunge this weekend and chopped off my quite a bit of my security blanket.  I mean hair.  Like 4 inches.  I haven't gotten a cut like this in quite a while, but I was definitely due for a change. 

I'm not sure if any other mommies can relate, but my hair seems to be one of the things that has gotten the most neglected since having B.  I normally throw it up in a ponytail or bun...literally...EVERY...SINGLE...DAY.  My hairdresser even commented that I have a permanent ridge in my hair from doing that.  Oops. 

Last night I did a french braid before bed and slept in it.  (Even though you can't really tell from this picture) it looks great compared to what it was.  It feels nice to NOT be wearing a bun to work today!!  Happy Monday!

Apologies for the poor picture quality!

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#Microblog Mondays - Magical boobies

Monday, September 22, 2014

#Microblog Mondays?  Read more about it here!

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12:14 AM.

I hear the familiar cry of my 17 month old from the room next door. 

We have never been the CIO type and would much rather deal with the effects of night upon night of sleep deprivation, instead. 

We are unsuccessfully trying to night wean so I poke my husband and tell him that he's on duty. 

I hear the door slowly open and, during that moment, B is quiet. 

As soon as Daddy pokes his head in and B realizes that it is Daddy with a cup of water and not Mommy with her magical boobies...

I wait for the crescendo...

"Mommy...Mommy...Mommy...GLEE*!  GLEE!  GLEE!  WAAAAAAH!" he screams louder and louder.
*Glee=breastmilk/nursing in B (language).  Such a long story.

Daddy tries his best at rocking, soothing, and providing a drink of water, but with no luck. 

Tired and defeated, my husband puts B back into his bed (who at this point is angry and agitated) and passes me the baton.

I enter the room and immediately the crying ceases.  The pass* gets thrown on the floor.  The arms raise for me to pick him up.  "GLEE!"  he promptly states.
*Pass=pacifier in B (language)

We sit in the rocker and I cradle him in my arms.  He quickly relaxes and starts his usual nursing behaviors (trying to pull out my nursing pad, rubbing/squeezing my arms, scratching my chest, etc.).

When done on the right side he pops off and says, "GLEE?" even though he knows that it is time for a diaper change first.

Diaper change completed.  Back to the chair for part deux of our midnight nursing sesh.

All done.  Back into bed.  Kiss from Mommy, check.  Doggy, check.  Monkey, check.  Blankie, check.

Magical boobies... your never-ending nightly job is complete.    

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Wonky post-baby cycles

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Second (actual) post-baby cycle started today...48 days after the first one.  I feel like I am post-miscarriage again and have no idea when to expect anything with regards to my reproductive system.  Yes, I know that I am not really tracking my cycles because I am not trying to get pregnant or anything.  I am not temping and I am barely even tracking CM.  Some people just like to know what is going on with their body and like seeing it out an paper.  I am one of those people.

I am thinking that if I ovulated this past cycle, it was probably around day 34, even though I didn't take an ovulation test.  I think that my body might have been gearing up to ovulate around day 20/21 (neg OPK around that time), but I just couldn't get there for some reason (well, probably because I am still breastfeeding/pumping 3 times a day).  I would love to start temping again, but the baby still wakes up at least once a night so it would be tough, at best.   


I had a feeling that my period was going to show as I laid in bed at 3 in the morning and COULD NOT go back to sleep.  For some reason, I seem to get insomnia right before I get my period.  It must have to do with the hormonal changes or something.  I also had terrible cramps this morning.  I feel like I am back in high school again.  I have no idea when I am going to get my period and when it starts there is no warning.  BANG.   

Anyways, I'd love to know if any other mommies experience(d) totally wacky and unpredictable cycles while breastfeeding or after giving birth, in general. 

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Marathon training check-in (at a glance)

Monday, September 8, 2014

I have about 7 weeks to go until the NYC marathon so I thought that it might make sense to write a little bit about where I am with my training.  This is my 3rd marathon, so I knew what to expect with regards to the time commitment.  I did not have a 16 1/2 month old during training for the first two, so this definitely is an added "twist" which has been a lot more to manage than I thought!

Personal Marathon Goal: 3:30

BQ Goal: 3:35

Average Weekly Mileage: ~40 miles per week

Highest Weekly Mileage: 49.1 miles

Longest Single Run: 20.03 miles (7:57 min per mile average pace)

Average Pace: ~8:07 min per mile

Interval Pace: Between 6:30 and 6:48 min per mile

Usual Schedule: 
Mon- 7/8 miles easy
Tues- Speed/track workout (~6-7 miles total)
Wed- OFF
Thurs- 5/6 mile tempo (includes 3 miles of faster running)
Fri- 60 min easy
Sat- Long run
Sun- Recovery 45/60 min easy

Diet: I try for paleo, but I'd say I am more gluten free right now because I need more carbs than I feel like I can get from just fruits, squash, sweet potatoes.  I am constantly hungry and I CRAVE carbs (I am also still BF 2-3 times a day).  Seriously.  I eat so much right now.  I am OBSESSED with Multigrain Puffins.  I seriously eat almost 2 boxes a week.  

Run Nutrition: That's All Fruit Bars (mid-long run).  CocoHydro Sport drink for runs of 13 miles or more.  Rise Protein Bars after most runs of 6 miles or more (or hard workouts).

Sleep: About 6.5-7 a night on average.

Injuries: Mostly nagging stuff.  My right hip is tight.  My right shin gets sore unless I wear a compression sleeve (which I would strongly recommend!).  I generally always feel a little sore in my hamstrings/glutes.

Shoes:  Nike Lunar Glide 5 for easy days, Nike Lunar Glide 6 for long runs/tempo, Mizuno Wave Sayonora for speed/races.

Other Favorite Running Gear: Feetures Elite Ultralight Socks

Most Fun Run So Far:  Running 12 miles in NYC from Brooklyn to Manhattan and back with my sister (she rocked it).

Complaints:  I feel like I am getting slower from all of the long and plodding miles and I miss running in 5k races.  I feel like my muscles and ligaments are getting shorter.  I am kind of bored with the long runs.

Positives:  I get lots of compliments on my muscular legs.  :)  Overall I feel good.  I am so excited to be done with this training and to run the race of my life!

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#MicroblogMondays

She probably has no idea who I am, but I feel like I know her well.  She is one of the main reasons that I started blogging in the first place, drum roll, please...

Melissa Ford @ The Stirrup Queens. :)

She came up with the great idea of "#MicroblogMondays" as a way to help bring people back to their blogs (from other social media mechanisms like FaceBook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.).  Check out her post detailing what to do here.  I have decided to give it a try to see if it can set my brain and fingers in motion and help me to put some words on my neglected blog.

One thing, before I start this actual post, I just want to again, thank Mel for all of the great work that she does.  She is always inspiring and her words are so comforting to read.  She really helped to pull me through a very tough time in my life.  She connected me with other women that were going through similar issues and is the glue that keeps the ALI community together.  For all of this (and a lot more), I will be forever grateful.

Mel- if you are reading this... THANK YOU!!  

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This may not seem like a big deal, but I can honestly say that it was one of the most proud mommy moments that I have yet to experience.  Last night, my baby of 16 1/2 months peed on the potty for the first time.  Yes, I know it was a combination of good timing and good luck, but he did it just the same.  We aren't even really doing serious potty training yet, just some low pressure "trying" once a day.  So this, to me, was amazing!  

Here is how it went down:

We sat him on his race car potty before his bath, like usual.  I told him to "push the pee pee out", which I can remember my mom telling my younger sibs to do when she was potty training them.  He kept saying "pee pee", which was so freaking cute.  Then he stood up and bam.  Pee in the potty.  

I squealed with elation and yelled down to my husband.  B was excited too, and pointed into the potty saying, "pee pee".  Then we called all of my relatives.  No...seriously, we did.  We had a call with one grandma and a FaceTime with another.  Then a couple of texts and a PhotoStream update.  Big news, people.   

One.  Proud.  Mommy.  Moment.  :)  



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Celebrating someone else's pregnancy

Monday, August 25, 2014

Even now, after having a healthy baby and not wanting another one right now, I have trouble feeling genuinely happy for someone else when I find out that they are pregnant.  What the heck is wrong with me?

Friday evening as my husband and I were prepping dinner, he told me that he had some news.  Being the person that I am, I just knew it had to do with someone being pregnant.  So I guessed to him that someone was pregnant and he nodded.  Then I started naming possible pregnant people.  I think it was my 3rd guess that was correct.  I'm pretty good at that game.

"Isn't that exciting news?" he said.

I should mention that they already have an almost 3 year old.

"Oh yeah.  Exciting" I said, trying to actually sound remotely excited.  "When is she due?"

"Oh it is still really early and definitely not public because she is only 9 weeks so don't mention it to anyone" he said.

"I guess she's never had any trouble" I said sarcastically and walked out of the kitchen, leaving my husband alone with his "exciting" news.

My reaction to the news kind of surprised myself.  I haven't heard about anyone getting pregnant lately so I haven't had to react.  Most of my friends are done having kids or are getting ready to give birth at any time.  There are a few people who are waiting in the wings (namely my Sister and SIL), but I am not even sure that either of them are actively trying at this point.  

Why is it that I can't be happy for someone when I find out that they are pregnant?  I am immediately filled with jealousy, anger, and resentment.  Shouldn't I be over these feelings at this point?  I have my baby.  he is healthy.  I love him.  I am finally starting to feel more relaxed and happy with things in my life so why is this one area still sore?

I am wondering if I am forever going to feel this way.  Will I never feel happy when someone announces that they are pregnant unless I know the full back story?  If this was their first try or an oops, will I forever be jealous of them even though it is not their fault?  I obviously wouldn't wish the things that happened to me to happen to anyone else so I am not sure why I feel this way.  It is as if my experience with miscarriage took away the joy and happiness surrounding the miracle of pregnancy/childbirth.

Example:  A friend of a friend had a miscarriage right around the beginning of her 2nd trimester.  She then had a lot of trouble getting pregnant again.  When she finally fell pregnant last year I was genuinely happy for her.  She went through so much to have her baby so I had no feelings of resentment towards her and I got teary when I heard that she gave birth to a healthy child.

Has anyone else who has experienced loss/infertility, but have gone on to have a healthy child (or children), felt or currently feel like I do?  If you have felt like this and no longer do, what helped you?  I really want to put all of the past in the past and move forward.  I want to congratulate someone when I hear that they are pregnant...and actually mean it.

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Sharing your story (and mine) - a request to my readers, please read

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Yesterday I was having one of those days where I was really feeling like throwing in the towel on the whole blog thing.  Why do I continue writing?  It takes up precious time and I oftentimes struggle with what to actually wrote.  I am not sure that many people are still reading other than the person who Googles and randomly stumbles upon one of my posts related to: "does CrossFit cause divorce?", "diastasis recti", or "do long cycles cause miscarriage?".  If I pulled my blog out of the blogisphere today, would anyone know or even care?

Since I started blogging, back in the spring of 2012, my content and tone have changed quite a bit.  I have gone from a very bitter and jaded "baby-less" person that blogged about miscarriage, temping, and pee-sticks to a mommy that blogs about her post-baby body self-esteem, running, and CrossFit issues.  The pre-baby and post-baby blogs are almost completely different audience types and, with the exception of people who have been following me for a while and have gone through similar circumstances, I am not sure how many new and regular readers I have.  What is the point of continuing?  For my own personal health and well-being?  If that was the case, couldn't I just write everything down in a private journal?  I seriously ask myself this all of the time.

Yesterday, I remembered to check my blog email box for the first time in several months.  Besides mounds of spam from people trying to get me to give them a shout out or let them "guest post", I had a few emails from a few different women who were writing to seek my advice regarding situations that they were in right now that I had once been in.  I was reminded of why I continue to keep my blog and the associated email box going.  For as many people that no longer follow me and read my posts, there continue to be a few people who come across my blog that find it helpful and comforting.  They have found themselves in an unfortunate position and the cosmic powers of Google have brought them to my tiny little space where they have been able to read about what I have gone through, relate either somewhat or completely, and apply things that I learned or tried to help them with their situations.  I seriously love that I am able to help even just one person a year because that is one less person who feels like they are dealing with a similar issue, alone.

One thing that a lot of these women that write to me have in common (and definitely how I once felt) is that they are alone in their situations and in their feelings about their situation.  They feel like the time is going so slowly and that they will never "be on the other side".  I am sure that there will always be extenuating circumstances that will make it medically impossible (for one reason or another) for someone who has miscarried many times, to have a child.  That said, out of all of the women who have ever taken the time to write to me personally, I cannot think of one that has followed up with me, that has not be able to eventually have a baby...somehow.  This makes me so happy.

I know that I currently don't have anyone's "permission" to anonymously post their story (and would NEVER do so unless I was given permission), but I would really love to share some stories of other ladies, who have been in similar shoes to my own, on my blog.  Maybe once a month or every other month or something like that.  I think that reading stories of others that have "been through it" helps those that are "still going through it" actually get through it.  Having some hope is half the battle and if I can provide hope to others by sharing positive stories, I am doing a world of good.

*****IMPORTANT, PLEASE READ!!*****
So, to my readers, if you have written to me before and still follow me, have never written but follow, or have stumbled upon my blog for the first time and have gone through a similar situation as me, please write to me (and either tell me your story or give me permission to anonymously use your story that we have already emailed about) and I will share in a dedicated post.  Your story is important and may help someone else who is struggling right now.  This isn't limited to just miscarriage, either, although that is the subject that I seem to get the most response and readers for.  I know I write about other topics such as body image (such as diastasis recti), nursing, and marriage issues, too, so feel free to write to me about that.   Share your struggles and things that you have tried that have helped you get through and continue on.  Please think about it.  I may be putting together a dedicated page on my blog to share the stories of others depending on the response that I get.  You could really help someone, too.  
*****

For now, I am going to continue writing and responding to emails.  I am just not ready to give it up yet, I guess.  I enjoy writing and connecting with others.  Since my day job isn't really "helping" anyone, it is nice to know that I am possibly helping others in this way, even if it is just a very small amount.  

xoxo

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Breaking up with Baby Connect

Monday, August 18, 2014

Old habits die hard...case and point...using Baby Connect to document my son's sleep, diapers, nursing, and my pumping nearly 16 months after his birth.  This past weekend, I quit using it cold turkey because it has just gotten too hard to guarantee that my husband and MIL are going to using it with any regularity.  I was tired of logging in and seeing that B was still "asleep" 12 hours and 52 minutes later since no one bother to "mark him as awake".

It was weird to be done with it, to put it simply.  I think I have been holding on to it in hopes that I could slow down the crazy fast progression of time and keep my baby little.  I know it sounds really silly, but since I have been tracking his nursing/sleeping/diapering habits since shortly after his birth, it is sad to me to not be doing it anymore.

To any prospective new moms out there, Baby Connect is a fabulous tool to track your baby's eating, drinking, sleeping, diapers, medical information, etc.  It is especially good for those analyst moms out there, like me, that like to see trends, irregularities, and inconsistencies in the form of charts and graphs.  Seeing sleep regression or a nursing strike on paper?  Helps you understand why you fell asleep on your desk yesterday or why you have yet another, clogged duct today.

 More than just tracking the basics, as mentioned above, I have basically used Baby Connect in lieu of a "baby book".  I have several baby books on the shelf that have collected a ton of dust because I have (guiltily enough) never so much as opened them.  I know that the first time that B smiled (for real) was on May 23, 2013 @ the ripe old age of 1 month and 5 days.  He got his first tooth on August 15, 2013 at 3 months and 27 days.  He said "Dada" on November 6, 2013 at the age of 6 months and 18 days.  I'll stop boring you with any more details about B's firsts.  :)

Another great feature of Baby Connect was the "Medical" section where you could document doctor's visits, illnesses, temperatures, and medicine dosage/distribution.  It was seriously invaluable to know what time I last gave B infant's Tylenol and what dosage that I gave him.  It was also great to take with me to the doctor's office so that when they asked me what his temperature was, I could easily whip out my phone and show them.  This is one aspect of Baby Connect that I am going to continue using.  I like seeing the percentiles and growth on a chart.  Yes, this is the analyst particles in my blood.

Wow, reading this back, it totally sounds like I am a Baby Connect sales rep.  Hahaha.  I can honestly tell you that I am not, although if someone high up at Baby Connect is reading this, I would love to work for you, so please email me!  :)

So, as I wipe away a few tears and try to embrace the fact that my baby is now a toddler, I will leave you with some of the charts that Baby Connect has compiled for me from the past few months.  This mommy thing is so hard; and I don't mean that because of the lack of sleep, lack of personal time/space, etc.  It is hard because, as much as you want your child to grow and thrive, it is so tough to let go of your baby.  Looking back at pictures of his baby self and remembering how "tiny" he was and how great he smelled.  Sigh.  I guess this is why people have more than one child.  ;)

I leave you with some summary graphs and charts from Baby Connect...enjoy!

Wow, that is a lot of pumped milk!







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My (not so) proud parenting moment

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

You read about them all the time...mom accidentally leaves baby in the car, dad loses track of toddler in the grocery store, baby eats something they shouldn't which involves either a trip to the ER or a call to poison control, etc.  I'm sure some parents are perfect (...riiiiiiight) and have never had a really stupid and potentially dangerous oops moment with their precious cargo that they really wish they could do over.  I had one of those moments on Sunday.  Don't worry, it doesn't have anything to do with hot cars or accidentally ingested toxic substances.

I was in the bathroom getting ready to go to the grocery store with B.  The bathroom is one of those places that I don't really like him to be, but if I am in there, I would rather have him be in my sight than out of my site and doing potentially dangerous things.  Anyways, he was in the bathroom, doing one of his favorite things...watching ABC Mouse alphabet songs.  Seriously, this kid knows half of those songs by heart.  If you haven't downloaded the app to your iPhone or other "i" device, you should.  It may help get you out of a jam and keep your baby occupied while you stay sane on one many occasions.  Basically, there is an extremely catchy 2ish minute song for each letter of the alphabet.  At the end of listening to a song, you get 1-3 tickets towards "purchasing" another song.  You start with A, B, and C, and then go from there.  We have all of the letters on the iPad and an extra 300 or so tickets...so yeah...he loves those songs.

Back to the bad parenting moment.  Little B was sitting on the bathroom rug, listening to the N song (or "nee, nee," as he likes to call it).  I was trying to put my rats nest of hair into a my usual boring bun.  Well, the song ended, he collected his tickets, and then he wanted me to pick him another song, since he hasn't quite mastered the fact that you can only touch one part of the iPad screen at a time in order to select something.  He stood up, picked up the iPad and started carrying it over to me, when he lost his grip and dropped the heavy generation 2 iPad on his left big toe and my right pinky toe.

OUCH!  We both whelped in pain, but I thought he got me much worse than he got himself.  He started crying pretty hard, though.  I scooped him up, kissed him, and did what I usually do, try to downplay the injury and tell him that he is ok.  He seemed pretty upset so we left the bathroom and I tried to find a distraction in a different room.  I got one of his toys and started playing with him, but he was having none of my distraction.  He was really upset so we went back into the bathroom and I set him on the bench to take a look.  Good thing I did.

There was blood...EVERYWHERE.  It was all over my white (of course I was wearing white) shorts, navy white/blue striped tank top, and it was running down my leg.  It was on the rug, on the floor, and even on the wall.  OMG I was horrified.  First at the fact of how much blood there was and secondly that it had taken me so long to notice that he was bleeding so badly.  I was shaking, but trying to not make it seem like I was upset so that he wouldn't get more upset.

I got a wet washcloth and wiped his poor little big toe, which was extremely difficult because it hurt him, I'm sure.  I squeezed on some antibiotic cream and put a bandage on him.  Poor thing.  Of course we had plans to go to the water park later that day, but wouldn't be able to now with this injury.  Stupid Mommy!!!

The rest of that day, he seemed ok.  He was walking running around with no issue and didn't seem to be in any pain.  Then came the night, which was a different story.  He was up.  All.  Night.  Literally.  The kid was so upset and did not sleep from 12-4 AM.  We were thinking that he was getting sick, but it turns out that it was his toe that was bothering him because he kept trying to pull off his bandage.  We gave him some infant acetaminophen and he finally fell asleep for a few hours.  Everyone in our house spent their Monday in a sleepy, groggy, foggy, haze.

The next day...his toenail fell off.  UGH.  I knew that it was bothering him so I kept slathering on the antibiotic cream and tried to keep a sock on him even though it was almost 90 degrees out.  I called the doctor that morning to see if they thought that we should bring him in.  She explained that we were doing everything right and to monitor it for excessive redness, warmth, or puss, which might indicate an infection.

My poor baby.  There is one thing that almost all mommies have in common, which is that they never want their babies to feel pain.  I would much rather have the pain transferred to me.  I have no idea how bad it hurts him because he can't tell me yet so I can only imagine.  I know that this is small potatoes compared to other illnesses/injuries that children get, but it is still pain that my child is experiencing that I wish I could take away.  I can't imagine the pain that a mother or father would feel knowing that their child was battling cancer or some other type of illness.  I see stories like that on the news, which used to bother me before I had B, but now I get very teary.

The moral of this story is that I need to be more careful when B is watching is ABC Mouse videos and that I need to pay attention when he injures himself to make sure that his injury isn't worse than I thought.  I am still working on getting this whole parenting thing down.  I am definitely not perfect.  No one is (even if they think that they are).  We all make mistakes, but the difference between making a mistake that affects you and making a mistake that affects your child can be huge.  We never want our children to pay for our own stupid mistakes.

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Marathon training and CrossFit training collision

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

I am currently knee-deep in NYC marathon training and, let me tell you, the cards have definitely been stacked against me, once again.  My husband and I have managed to keep, what I have viewed as a fair schedule for the last couple of weeks.  Yes, there have been days when I feel like his workouts have been ill-timed or ridiculously long, but other than that, we have both been able to train for our respective sports while still managing the baby, the house, the pets, our jobs, etc.

Here is an example of my workout schedule for this week:

Monday- 6 miles (easy)
Tuesday- Track workout of 400 (90 sec rest), 400 (2:30 rest), 800 (90 sec rest) x 3, with a 1 mile warm-up and 1 mile cool-down
Wednesday- OFF
Thursday- 6 miles with 3 miles at tempo pace (1/2 marathon to marathon pace)
Friday- 45-60 min (easy)
Saturday- 16 miles
Sunday- 30-45 min (easy) and/or cross-train

I usually do my Mon/Thursday workouts right after work at 5 PM and my husband spends time with the baby (feeds him dinner and bathes him) and then I take over so that he can leave around 6:30 PM for his workout for which he usually doesn't return until almost 9 PM or later.  My Mon/Thursday runs take between 45-55 minutes and I always forgo stretching so that I can get back to see B.

Tuesday is the only night that I have to go run at a specific time because I run with a group of people.  I have to leave at 6:10 PM to get there on time, so this is the ONE day that I have requested that he take off.  If I could change the schedule and make everyone meet on Wednesday, I would, but I am not making the schedule.  Before I leave, I usually help feed B and occasionally bathe him, too.

Wednesdays, I usually take off so my husband is free to go to train whenever he wants, but he usually doesn't go until 6:30 PM.

Fridays, I usually run at lunch unless there is a baby doctor appointment or some other appointment that day.  If I can't run at lunch then I run with the baby in the jogger after work or occasionally pull a Mon/Thurs schedule kind of day.  My husband is (usually) free to train whenever he wants.

Saturday mornings are my long runs (up to 22 miles by Sept/Oct).  I have been getting on the road between 5 AM and 5:30 AM so that I can be back in time for my husband to go and workout at at 8 AM.  He usually goes around 8 AM and doesn't come back until 11 AM, at which point we all start the rest of our day, together.

Sundays are our only day to "sleep in".  Usually B has other plans, but occasionally we get to sleep until 7-7:30 AM.  Occasionally we do a family workout and run together with B in the jogger or do some other type of cross-training workout.

So most of you reading this are probably exhausted after reading this because I feel exhausted after typing it.  It may seem fair to you or you may think, sheesh, that guys really does long workouts (the thought I usually have).  Last night we ran into an issue, which I feel like we have run into before.  My husband is not a fan of my Tuesday night workouts because he says that it screws up the whole week for him.  I thought that we had come to an agreement that Tuesdays were MY day.  The one day that I can go and workout with others and not feel like I have to rush back.  Apparently, there was no agreement.

My MIL is still watching the baby on Mon/Tues until the end of the month.  When she decided she wanted to do this, she told us that she was here to watch the baby and that we should never feel bad about doing so while she was there.  Well, I think she came to the realization that he is a lot more work than she thought and come 4:30 PM, she is ready to hand him over to his rightful owners.  My husband has been sneakily getting his mom to watch the baby on Tuesdays so that he can slink out of the house at 5 PM to go workout.  He doesn't get back until around 7 PM, so I am left with the uncomfortable job of leaving the baby with Meme after she has already watched him all day.  I feel guilty and terrible when I leave.  My husband doesn't mind because, when he leaves, I'm there.

After work last night (after thinking we had an agreement about Tuesdays since we had gotten into a fight about it the previous week), my husband, MIL, SIL, and I were all sitting in the living room watching B when my husband asked his mom if she would mind watching B while he went to workout.  She didn't sound like she had even the slightest bit of interest in that idea.  If she had said, "Yes!  I'd love to," then maybe I would not be typing this right now, but she definitely did not sound excited.  I glared at him and told him that I thought we decided that he was taking the day off, but he shrugged off my comment and kept talking about working out.  I asked him politely not to go, but he kept pressing it.  I told him quietly that I didn't feel comfortable having this conversation in front of his family so he decided to be passive-aggressive and say, "Fine.  I won't go." so as to make me feel as guilty as possible.  He even threw in an, "my workout schedule for the week is ruined."  Of course steam started flowing out of my nose and ears.

To make a long story short, he didn't go, but not because he remembered our conversation from the previous week.  In fact, he said he could not recall said conversation.  I went to my running workout feeling guilty as ever and did not perform well and didn't have a great time because I kept thinking about this situation.

When I got back at around 8:30 PM, the house was dark, the front light was out, and the door was locked.  I got inside and everything was quiet.  I went upstairs to find my husband in bed...sleeping.  B's lunches were not packed, his cups dirty, the dirty pump parts in the sink, the cats milling around, the dog begging to be let outside.  To me, this was the ultimate F.U.  I have to get up at 4:30 AM so that I can get to work early enough to be able to pick B up from daycare, plus 90 percent of the time I am up with him at least once a night.  Yes, I know I choose to do this work-out once a week so I get back late and have a little scrambling to do and have to deal with less sleep.  I get that.  What I don't get is why he wants to (seemingly) make my life more difficult on this particular night.    

So of course B was also up all night last night.  Some type of almost 16 month old sleep regression situation going on.  So on top of being super angry, I had to deal with that.  I guess it is still TBD how we decide to work this situation out since we can't seem to come to a compromise that works for both of us.  Is it me?  Is it him?  Is it both of us?  Should we both give up the notion of being able to train for anything and just go back to working out to prevent us from becoming unhealthy?  I am not sure if our situation is unique, but it would be great to get some advice or feedback on how you all make it work (without divorce!).

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Why my baby isn't ready for the toddler room...yet (a follow-up)

Thursday, July 31, 2014

My husband and I have been communicating regularly with the daycare and we came to the conclusion earlier in the week that we would try him in the toddler room for a few hours to see what happened.  They agreed that his walking, talking, eating/drinking, napping was definitely up to the toddler level, but they wanted to see how he would do interaction-wise.

As it turns out, he did have one issue while in the toddler room, and it was something that I hadn't really thought about before related to independent play and interactive play with other children.  Three months after his birth, my sister started watching him regularly.  He did go to music class once a week and had a few play-dates here and there, but he was largely given 100% attention by an adult during all of his waking hours.  Someone was always playing with him and attending to his every need.  All.  The.  Time.  Even now, the days that he is not currently in daycare, he has either my MIL, my husband, or me to entertain him.  Oh and is he a needy baby.  He loves attention.  

Enter B into the world of the toddler room at daycare.  He was seeking out adults as playmates instead of the other kids and he was seeking them out to entertain him.  Why wouldn't he, I guess?  He is used to adults playing with him all the time and catering to his every need.  Uh oh.  Mommy, Daddy, and company may have created a monster over here!

Anyways, the daycare team thinks that B needs a few more transitional weeks/months to get him used to playing with other kids and learning how to entertain himself a bit more.  It makes sense and I am totally ok with that.  We also found out that a few of the kids who aren't walking are NOT going to be moving over yet, which also made me feel better.  They said that there is no reason why he can't switch rooms in October or November (or even September if we think he is ready).  They said they are always going to strive to do what is best for the child.  I appreciate this type of approach so much, as would any other parent, I'm sure.  I was so relieved to hear this!!

So for now, B is staying in with the "infants" and Mommy and Daddy are going to work on incorporating more time with other kids around his age and trying to encourage him to play alone sometimes...without Mommy and Daddy as constant entertainment.  Hopefully, sometime soon, he'll develop a little more in this area.

Does anyone else have a toddler who likes constant adult entertainment (and no, I don't mean the porn kind, haha!)?  Any advice from BTDT mommies/daddies?

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Daycare debacle

Monday, July 28, 2014

Up until now, the transition from family care to daycare has been rather seamless.  Even though we had a few unexpected scheduling bumps in the beginning, we have settled into a routine at this point.  My MIL takes B on Mon/Tues and he goes to daycare Wed-Fri.  Starting in September, he will be going to daycare full-time.  At first, I was worried about how we would be able to handle the shift to full-time, but the gradual introduction to the world of daycare has actual made me much less worried.

So far, we LOVE the daycare we have chosen.  The teachers are great and very loving and caring with the children.  The facility itself is nice and seems more like a school than a childcare center.  They have a great outdoor space to use when the weather is nice.  Basically it is the most perfect childcare scenario that I could have imagined us in, with the exception of the high cost, but you get what you pay for.  The care of my child is NOT something that I am willing to be cheap on.

Yesterday, I received an email from daycare with some updates.  This is a usual weekly occurrence and something that I look forward to because they always add in pictures of the kids.  This particular email contained a message about the "new school year", which starts in September.  Apparently 3 kids are moving from the infant room to the toddler room, but not B.  As soon as I read this, my heart started racing.  B is 15 months and definitely nearing the end of "infancy".  Why isn't he moving up to the toddler room with the other kids?  I got especially concerned when I saw that one of the kids being moved up is over a full month younger than him and one more of those kids (2 weeks older than him) just started walking.  I could feel myself getting more and more upset as I read through the email.

B can walk (and has actually started running), he can can eat on his own, he drinks out of a cup, he mimics everything, he naps regularly every day, he has (if I had to do a quick guess) at least 30 words in his vocabulary, and understands even more than he can say, such as sit down, pet the dog, take a bite/drink, etc.  He does still take his pacifier at naps and when he is upset/tired.  He is still breastfeeding about 4 times a day.  He also tends to throw his food on the floor when he is done, in addition to using the sign and saying up, but I mean he is 15 months, not 2.

Anyways, in the heat of the moment, I wrote back a quick email to the director, whole I will call "Vanessa":

Hi Vanessa-
I know we spoke briefly about it a few weeks back, but I'm not sure if we ever came to a conclusion on how we were going to handle B's schedule in the fall.  I am fine with keeping him with the infants a little longer, but I think keeping him in that room until next summer might be too long, right?  How might that work?  Would a mid-year shift to the toddler room be possible?  Also, you were going to check to make sure he could transition to 5 days.  Hopefully that is still ok.  If it not, please let us know ASAP so we can make other arrangements.

I didn't want to be that annoying mother, but I also don't want my child to be held back for unspecified reasons when it could hurt his development.  If there is something that he is behind on, skills wise, then I'd like to know so that we can work with him on it.  Also, it concerns me that all of his buddies are leaving him and that he is going to be the oldest child in the room by 4-5 months or so.  He isn't going to get any stimulation and I am sure that there are going to be lots of new babies starting, which will require the closer care of the teachers.  I honestly would not mind that he was going to be staying in the infant room longer, if there were going to be some other kids around his same age.

"Vanessa" emailed me back promptly on Monday morning:

5 days is perfect in the infant room.  Amanda feels B should start the year in the Infant room, but we can certainly revisit that after a few months.  How do you feel about that?

Hmmmm, ok.  I am not sure if I am being super sensitive here, but the lack of specifics makes me question the reasoning.  If they don't have enough space, then ok, I get that, but please explain to me why a 14 month old is getting moved up and a child who just learned to walk is also getting moved up.  What do I need to work on with B so that he will be ready to move up?  There is no way that he can stay in the infant room until the end of the school year in June.  He will be 26 months.

So this is where I am, currently.  I forwarded the email to my husband and have decided to let him take a stab at dealing with the situation.  Too often, I handle these situations, and this time, I am going to let him take the wheel.  My husband is a very good negotiator and can deal with these types of situations more objectively and with less emotion than me.  He mentioned setting up a meeting to talk in person, which I think is probably a good idea.

Does anyone have any advice for us?  Do you think I am being the crazy helicopter parent?  I know that there is a difference between being an advocate for your child and being overbearing and obnoxious.  I definitely don't want to be the latter.  I have also heard of kids getting treated poorly when their parents complain.  I know that is completely unethical, and I am not saying that will happen at our center, but it could happen.  I don't want my poor, innocent child paying for my mistakes.  What would you do?

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