Thursday, July 14, 2011

Lots going on in my noggin'

This morning I am sitting in a quiet house thinking, thinking about a lot of stuff, so I decided to write.

The house I am sitting in is not my own house. I am homeless for the time being. As most of you know we are moving to Massachusetts. July 10th, the movers came and emptied our entire home in one day. The power was out, we packed and moved the basement by flashlight. It was quite the experience. It was crazy, but it's done. We are moving on to the next phase of life.

Keith and Parker left the next day for Massachusetts and are already there. Tricia and I are still in Illinois at Darlene's house, but we are not here much longer. I leave tomorrow for my 1/2 marathon for the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of America. Tricia leaves Sunday for Camp Electric. I get back, she gets back, and then on the 22nd we leave for Massachusetts. My head spins just thinking of my life since last August when we found out we would be moving.

At the end of our trip to Massachusetts, in August, is when I got violently ill. That led to the next couple of months of being in and out of the hospital and finding out I had Crohn's. When something happens to me in life I use it as a chance to help others. I am living by the saying, "I may have Crohn's, but I refuse to let Crohn's have me." Not long after my diagnosis I found the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of America and joined forces with them to talk about my Crohn's to people thinking of joining Team Challenge.

Team Challenge is a 1/2 marathon training program, where you train and fundraise to raise awareness and funds to help find a cure for these diseases. Eventually I knew that I could join the team and not only inspire them to run, but I could also run along side them. With the help of many gernerous people and businesses I was able to raise over $3000 for the cause and am now heading out to Napa, California to run a half marathon. I have very mixed emotions about this run.

Through my whole Crohn's journey I have allowed myself to gain back 50 pounds of the 106 I had lost before getting sick. The reason I say "I have allowed myself to gain back" the weight is because Crohn's has now become an excuse. At the beginning of my Crohn's journey it was a legit gain due to medication I was on. Also, I was not allowed to eat anything with Fiber over 2 grams. I was basically living on potatoes, white rice, white pasta, white bread, pretty much anything that wasn't good for you.

I started gaining the weight and getting back into old habits. I was told not to eat popcorn, but that chips were ok. Popcorn was always my fall back snack on Weight Watchers, Chips were a trigger food that caused me to overeat. Old habits were creeping back in and quickly.

I leave tomorrow for the Napa to Sonoma 1/2 marathon and I am the heaviest I have been since my diagnosis. I have not gained back all my weight, but I have gained back a lot and it has affected my working out and my motivation. I am not as trained as I would like to be. The move really put a damper on that, but I know that walking/jogging it I will finish.

There is an option to start the race 30 minutes early if your pace is like 16 minutes a mile of higher. I am between 16-18 minutes per mile right now. I did not want to start early, but if I have that option then I might as well take advantage of it. That was a very hard decision for me as I felt like I had failed somehow. I really wanted the excitement of the mass start with everyone else. I really was down about my pace, but then I realized I have had a lot going against me the last 11 months and I realized just how awesome it is that I'm doing a 1/2 marathon despite it all and that it's ok if I have to start early. There is nothing wrong with that and now I REALLY am ok with the early start.

We had our final team meeting this past Tuesday night and it was great to finally meet my team members as I was not able to do team training with them. There are several people starting early and that made me even more at peace with my decision. It made me realize that everyone is doing what they need to do to get this race done and there is no shame in starting early.

I look forward to this race and will let you know how it goes.

After I get to Massachusetts I will be getting back into training full force. I have an Olympic Triathlon on August 21 in Connecticut. I'm a little nervous about biking around my new house. I have this major fear of getting lost. HAHA. I think I need a GPS for my bike. I'm excited about the tri in August, but a little nervous as well because the swim is in the ocean. I only did my first OWS in a lake last summer and now I'm jumping into the ocean. Should be interesting. I'm excited, but nervous as well. I have never liked swimming in salt water as a kid, so maybe it will be ok now that I'm a grown up. :)

THere has been a lot going on in my brain regarding the move to Massachusetts. My husband, Keith, loves his new job and the people he works with. He was getting so stressed at his old job. It was affecting his health, our family, and he just wasn't happy. Since leaving his old job I can see such a change in him and he has lost 10 pounds since not being so stressed.

I am very excited to move yet nervous at the same time. I have been in Illinois for 25 years. I have had some of the same friends for 25 years, especially my best friend, Darlene. We have been there through thick and thin and I'm not sure how to process us being a part. I know, I know, I have heard a million times, "Well, you have facebook and Skype." I know I do and I'm very grateful for that, but it's not the same as the real person.

She is coming to see us in August and will be at my Oly to cheer me on, so saying goodbye on the 22nd won't be so hard, but come August it will be real for me.

I haven't enjoyed saying goodbye to my Weight Watchers family, my church family, neighbors, gym friends, and my dear girl friends, but I've had to and it sucks. Someone at my Weight Watchers going away dinner said, "Melissa, Massachusetts needs you now." That's how I have to look at it. I will have new doors to open. I will have new people to inspire. I will have new people to help. I will have many new opportunities that I wouldn't have if I stay in Illinois. For these things I am excited, but for saying goodbye I am not.

Excitement plus sadness is what I am dealing with right now. When I feel happy and excited about the move, then I feel bad like I am hurting the people I have to say goodbye too. I know that's not true, but that's how I feel. The excitement about new adventures ahead is what keeps me from getting to sad, so it is a crazy cycle that my emotions are going through.

Emotions are a crazy thing and something that I am dealing with in a very real way lately. Not only am I dealing with trying to navigate my own emotions, but trying to help my kids figure out how they are feeling. We will all be ok. I think we just need to get to Massachusetts and get our lives settled. I think part of all this uneasiness is just feeling like we are in limbo. Right now I am homeless and until I get home I will have to work through how I am feeling.

Right now I feel better having written about what was floating around in my head. I haven't been blogging as much and I am going to get blogging again. It really does help me deal with this crazy thing we call life.

Here are some pics from the move:

1 comment:

rebecca hallin said...

I know how you must feel with your move and all! I did that back in 2009 from Colorado where I was for 18 years to Washington where I had never lived. I miss all my tri and running friends and since being here my running pretty much stopped and weight went up about 30 lbs. Also this last May my mother passed away and that was hard but I was able to be with her before her passing. I did a 5K last night in Seattle it was hard being heavier but I did not quit. Hamg in there and rememeber God does not give us more than we can handle! friends in fitness REbecca