Friday, December 11, 2015
Monday, December 7, 2015
Nick and I ran the Alexandria Turkey trot again this year. It's a tradition that we started before D and hope to continue. I figure (clueless first time mom here, nobody tell me if toddlers are more challenging please) this year would be the hardest since D is young and his sleep schedules are so tenuous. Luckily, the race starts at 9, so it meant we had a reasonable wake up time. We got there with plenty of time to spare, the weather was pleasant, and everyone was in good spirits.
This is a big stroller- and dog-friendly race, so they arranged for a separate starting line for strollers and dogs. We started at the same time, but on a parallel path. We joined the main group after a couple hundred yards. It was super congested, but Nick was driving the stroller like a pro as we tried to hit a decent pace. From past years, we knew that the race started off crowded and stayed that way for several miles, so hitting any goal paces is hard right at the start. Nick was taking no prisoners though, and we passed tons of people.
The rest of the race flew by as we kept speeding along. I was struggling to keep up with Nick. His stroller pace is my PR pace! We were both pretty spent by the last mile, and D let us know he was done also. We finished in just about 38 minutes, 7:37 pace (!!!!), and we were the 11th and 12th in the "stroller" category, so Nick was probably actually in the top 10 strollers! Awesome, especially for such a big (4000+ runners) race. It was a hard but really fun race, and I'm thankful, as usual, for Nick pushing me, figuratively, and pushing the stroller, literally. He's the best.
Tuesday, November 10, 2015
On Halloween, D, Nick and I headed out to run our first race as a family. Up until this point, D's always stayed with one of my parents while we ran, but he was going to hang in the stroller this time. Lucky guy.
Official time was 21:40- 6:46, 6:52, 7:07 (ugh).
We ran another 5K in the rain the following week. This time, Nick's family joined us, which was awesome. D rode with Nick again and I tried to keep up with my high school coach for the whole race.
This time- 21:22 and I beat my coach!
These are the last races we'll be able to run this year due to travel. I'm so, so proud of myself for all the improvements I've made this season, even if they were mostly just because of time elapsed since giving birth, losing baby weight, and getting some miles in, versus real quality training. Could I be faster? This year has me excited to see what else I've got in me. 2016 was supposed to be the year of my return to marathons, but maybe I'll give 5ks another shot? To be determined.
Although the days with you are get easier, the nights are not. You are challenging to get settled. I hope it's not because you're in pain or discomfort, but it's so hard to tell. Life would be 110% happy and joyful if you would sleep better. Right now we're at about 95%.
Keep growing, keep learning, keep making us laugh. You are the best thing we've ever done.
Monday, October 19, 2015
Subtitle: in which my blog title becomes relevant again.
Nick ran a 10 miler the other week. He crushed it, running sub-8 minute miles on a beautiful, sunny, cool morning. I volunteered, helping with some race setup and finish line logistics, but mostly I just thought about how much I wanted to be racing. The Year of 5Ks (tm) has been wildly successful, and exactly what I needed when taking care of a wee baby, but I miss running long. I want to take my current short distance speed, add endurance, and get my damn BQ in 2016. Damnit.
I have a very tentative plan to accomplish this: train hard for a fast half (tentatively the Alexandria half) in the late spring, assess my capabilities, then train for a late fall marathon (VERY tentatively Rehoboth marathon). This is all dependent on D of course. He still can't really be away from me for more than an hour without freaking out. However, he is getting more chill in the jogging stroller, so it's possible for me to run 3-5 miles most days. This means I can do everything but the long run with him in tow. Hopefully by spring, he can spend 1-2 hours away from me on the weekends.
In 2013, BQ seemed like a crazy unachievable dream. It still seems far off, but I am determined. This year of racing faster has also taught me about caring for my body. I have enjoyed running and "training" because I'm fueling myself better. That fuel might often consist of like 6 granola bars a day, because who has time for forks when baby is PULLING HIMSELF UP who gave you permission to do that!?!?, but I'm not asking my muscles to run on empty. I'm eating a ton because keeping my supply up for D has always been a priority, and as a side benefit, I've been running well. I'm also taking more days off from running and I weigh a bit more than I did the last time I was training. I'm in a way better place. I need to remember how good it feels to eat enough so i can get some fast times next year.
Wednesday, September 30, 2015
Usually I start writing these posts as soon as I finish the previous one, but this month that didn't happen. We've been busy!
You really began to move this month. You began scooting by pulling yourself with one arm, then doing The Worm to move forward, then sort of an all-fours movement, but still not textbook crawling. Whatever, you are moving around no problem! It is great and awful. I used to put you on your playmat and make breakfast, checking in on you every couple minutes. Now, if more than 30 seconds has passed since I looked at you, you're somewhere else entirely. Most likely trying to eat an electrical cord. Baby proofing. Yeah. You've also started to pull yourself up, with a little help. You'll crawl over and try and climb up my body, usually while whining. It is adorable and makes me feel very loved.
You met more family members this month! We traveled to New Jersey to see Nick's family and you met your aunt, uncle, and 2 more cousins. It wasn't the most relaxing visit, but everyone loved seeing you, you just didn't love all the attention.
Eating is going so much better! You have really taken to it. You aren't necessarily eating a large quantity, but you sure are moving some food around. You love potatoes, broccoli, green beans, and bread. You're also addicted to baby puffs and would eat them for an hour if we let you.
This was a month of activities! You had swim lessons, which you mostly dislike, music class, which you also dislike, and storytime, which, surprise, you barely tolerate. I really needed to leave the house, but all these things are a little much for you. We'll keep trying music and storytime, and maybe return to swim lessons in a few months.
This month we really settled into a nice routine as far as naps and awake time. As long as we stick to that, we can do most things, but once you begin you get tired, bedtime had better happen. It's hard being adorable for an extended period of time. I totally understand.
I wish I could bottle you up, Little Man. You are so active, inquisitive, and fun. Your soft little body relaxing into mine is a rare feeling these days, you are always on the go. It is so easy to get lost in the day to day survival and miss out on the wonder that is you- you growing and learning and becoming your own little person a little more each day. I try to take a step back more often and record the perfect soft squish of your cheeks, the dimples on your knuckles, the warmth of your belly and the little "ooo" sound you make when something intrigues you in my memory. These days are slipping by and I want to hold you like this forever. You are so loved.
(Where are the pictures? In a land where my phone and the computer don't both malfunction in the same week. I'll be back with more)
Tuesday, September 15, 2015
We ran the next 5K event in the Grand Prix a couple weekends ago. It was one of the area's "big" races with about 350 participants. It takes place in a really pretty, farm-y area near our house. The 5K course is an out-and-back. This sounded like no big deal when I looked at the course map, but UGH it's disheartening to just run a long straight stretch.
Nick ran with me again, yay! We started out FAST. 7:05. I saw that tick by and was instantly worried. I was ahead of my high school cross country coach, who is historically faster than me. I think that may have contributed to the pace dropoff in the second part of the race. Or I was just grumpy that we'd run 1.5 miles out and now needed to run back. Grump.
Next 2 splits were both 7:25, plus 6:35 for the nubbin. I really could not dig deep and find anything in the last mile, I was doneskies. Lackluster run time was 22.50, which was good for 1st place in age group for me. I think I was third woman? When I asked my high school cross country coach why there weren't many fast women around, he said he wasn't sure. Um, the proper response is "Laurel, you're plenty fast! Go you!" Way to stroke my ego.
Monday, September 14, 2015
Speaking of teething... yikes. That's been a real challenge. Midway through the month, we started noticing some firmness behind your lower gums. Teeth! Long-awaited teeth! By the end of the month you had one tooth all the way through and another one most of the way through. So cute, but so painful. Your nighttime sleep has been particularly bad because of the teeth.
You are the reason they make tag toys for babies. On any toy, you will play with it in the normal way, but once you find the tags it's game over. You will gently chew/suck on them. You do the same with my phone if you get the chance, you are obsessed.
Wednesday, August 19, 2015
Thursday, August 13, 2015
But then, the magic "it gets better" points came and went. His digestion did improve around 5 months, but the nighttime grouchiness continued. It morphed into daytime grouchiness. Some days he cried constantly. He was put on antacid medication by one pediatrician, then another said it does no good and "reflux" will resolve soon anyway.
In the midst of all this, I started googling "baby cries all the time" "baby never sleeps" "X weeks old and still colicky." I was directed to various sites and articles that seemed to fit D. They described a "high needs" baby. It fit him perfectly! Can't be put down, feeds all the time, doesn't sleep well. It was a relief to find out he's "normal" in his own way, but also frustrating because I didn't want to have a baby that was special, even if it meant he was totally developmentally normal, just tempermental. I didn't want to label my tiny little guy, but I wanted desperately to know I wasn't alone.
Thank goodness for Facebook. There are many groups for moms who have babies like D! And as I read their posts, they sounded so familiar. "My baby hates the car." "I can't take a shower without him screaming the whole time." "Why are his naps only 30 minutes long?" There is comfort in knowing there are others out there in your same difficult situation. The moms who'd been at it longer had pointers.
But it's still so hard, because the Internet is virtual, and D is real. My nights are still so, so hard. Every time I hang out with other moms with babies, I'm reminded how different he is. When I'm asked to leave storytime at the library (yes, that actually happened), I'm reminded how different he is. Every time I turn down an invitation because it might possibly interfere with his finely tuned nap schedule, I'm reminded. When he cries when anyone other than me or Nick holds him, I'm reminded. When I'm stuck standing outside the restaurant or party with a screaming baby, I'm reminded.
I know that this too shall pass, but right now things are still rough. I know "the days are long but the years are short," but these days are not getting any shorter. When I see a mom with a toddler, I am so hopeful for the future. We just have to make it there.
Monday, August 10, 2015
Friday, July 31, 2015
- Dancing in public is a thing I do now
-nursing in public? No big deal.
Speaking of no shame, I care a lot about breastfeeding and its normalization. I basically just feed D wherever and whenever. He doesn't eat on any sort of schedule, so while I don't plan on whipping out the boob in every store we go to, sometimes it just happens that way. I'm oddly not self conscious about it. Baby eats when he needs it.
I used to lay in bed and toss and turn for hours. Not anymore! My nights are a blur of being in and out of bed, nursing and bouncing on the ball. I barely wake up all the way before I get back to sleep. In some ways, being overtired is preferable to insomnia, but then the other night I got off the ball and couldn't figure out where I was. Seriously. Lost in my own bedroom. That was weird. I'm so tired.
Wednesday, July 29, 2015
Monday, July 20, 2015
Wednesday, July 15, 2015
It's been quiet around here. I have ideas, but they all seem really mundane. I mean, I stare at the same (amazing, adorable) face all day, every day, I feel like I'm boring to the outside world. But I'm not boring to myself! My life is super interesting. To me. And hopefully Nick.
Tuesday, July 7, 2015
You love standing up! It is absolutely your favorite thing to do. We can often calm you down but holding you up and letting you put pressure on your feet. You are so strong, Little Man.
This was also Nick's first Father's Day. I got you guys Big Dipper and Little Dipper shirts. Yours doesn't quite fit yet, so a stock photo will do. I'm pretty psyched for you two to coordinate.