To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.
-Steve Prefontaine
Make it simple, but significant.
- Don Draper

Monday, January 27, 2014

The Big Reveal

In November my darling husband texted me an address to look at. As requested, I did. "Clearly old people live there!" was my initial response. But the more I looked at it online the more I wanted to see it. That Saturday I was with my mom, step-dad, MF and a realtor checking out this home. It was cute! Very retro, and cute in a 1950's housewife way. The day before Thanksgiving we made an offer. They countered, we countered, they raising the price to more than they originally asked?!? That, coupled with some shady feelings and their asshole listing agent, caused me to say, "No, screw that. We will find something else!" And that was that. In the matter of a week we found a house, offered and cancelled the offer.

So to the apps we went! We downloaded tons of real estate apps and searched for THE house. Outside of the city limits, more than an acre, room for MF to have a sop for his man activities. We were pretty picky and drove around looking to rule homes out and decide what we wanted to check out in more depth. Welcome that big snow of 2013! 

Without telling my mom we looked at house #2. When MF showed me photos I laughed and pretty much said, "In your dreams!" But we checked it out anyway. Love at first sight! It had a different feel than the first one and had a more "Welcome home!" feeling. But I was going to do my best to suppress my THIS IS IT feeling and give the others a chance. 

Homes 3, 4 and 5 were all in the same neighborhood. While we should have been staying home, we instead met with our trusty realtor and braved the snow and icy conditions to check them out. Number 4 was awkward. The owners were home watching football. The house was nice, but too close to neighbors for me. Number 3 was huge! Five bathrooms and three living rooms?!? We wouldn't be able to hear each other on opposite sides of the house. It did have some cute deer hanging out under a tree though! Leaving #3 was an adventure! We had to get up a huge hill covered in snow. As we got partly up a truck pulled out in front of us, slowing us down. We ended up stuck spinning in snow. MF says, "if we slide back a bit, it's ok. Don't worry." Next thing I know we are rapidly going backwards and he clearly isn't doing it on purpose. I start saying his name over and over, in a calm manner. He hits the wheel, we do donuts down the freaking hill!!!! I almost started crying, but my car was fine. We looked for chains but didn't have any. Eventually we got up the hill and I just died laughing! An adventure! Chanelle, when I said I was at my cousin's house that was true....we looked at the house by them!

Last house was number 5. It was beautiful. A huge living room with a fireplace you could walk completely around. The deck was awesome. It was so nice, but only one real bedroom. I wanted three. So we went home and decided to go check out house number 2. Hmm, Tew Legit liked house #2! This time I took photos and even got IN the tub to make sure it would work. I was in love. This was going to be our house.

We made an offer. After a couple counter offers we all agreed! From there it's been near daily trips to go look at it and count down. The inspector came out and we learned it needed a new roof. So the owners had a new roof put on and some dry rot fixed. I've signed my name and initials so many times since mid December. Keeping it a secret has been so hard. My own mom didn't know which house we picked (or that we even looked) until Christmas when we took her and Grandpa to see it! 

Apparently you just need to bomb your house for fleas, realize you need to fix a wall and see how much work your current home needs to inspire you to just grow up and buy a house! We were supposed to be moving in today, but the underwriter is being difficult so we are on call to move in any day now!

*All those boxes I've been taking home? I wasn't lying when I said I had a big project and was cleaning, sorting and merging. I just omitted that ultimately those boxes are moving locations. Oh, and Lady has been there a lot. She gets excited every time we pull up. She loves her new home!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

To Cane or Not To Cane, To Run or Not to Run

Nobody messes with Barnabas and his cane!
Meniere's Disease has been taking its toll on me. Behind the scenes I have A LOT going on. Stress, positive or negative, we have learned, triggers some of my Meniere's attacks. Attacks then stress me out.  Attacks aren't letting me run.  Not running stresses me out a lot. So I've been trying to find ways to cope and deal with it all.

For quite a while I've been saying how I feel like I need a cane. When I'm home I can grab things to stay steady and my animals don't care.  At stores Man Friend stays at my side because it is often I completely lose balance and grab him so I don't fall. I don't always have him around obviously, and I get pretty nervous. I wear my medical ID bracelet just in case, but seriously who wants to fall in public or get looked at like you are drunk during the day?  I was killing time Friday in a store waiting for a meeting. I wandered toward the pharmacy and noticed canes for sale. I grabbed one, put it to a good height and decided to test it out. What did I notice? Every single person that walked by slowed and looked me up and down. I don't know how to describe how it felt. Yesterday Man Friend and I were at a different store and I found a "cute" cane. I felt better walking, steadier than I had been moments before. I didn't feel stared at, although I did see people looking. We stood in the store for a long time talking about it. I realized I feel better with one, but I just don't feel ready to be mocked. I've been mocked in public before when I asked MF to repeat himself because I couldn't hear. This whole invisible illness stuff sucks! Work is where I know I would be blatantly made fun of and talked to about it. I'm one step away from working in a junior high. Respect and privacy does not exist there. I have to go every day, four hours a day. I don't feel like being the joke for those four hours even though I would possibly be able to walk without feeling as nervous. I didn't buy the cane. I don't feel like having to explain MY life to nosy gossips.

It is now Sunday and I wanted to get in a five my run to prepare for Ragnar. Since I wrote last I have gotten my Ragnar legs. I CAN run long, obviously, but for the sake of the team and because I've been getting knocked down so often, I have one of the easier assignments. My goal is to try to regain some of my speed so I can help as best as I can this April. I've been having vertigo all day and woke up with crazy bad ear pain, which is always a precursor to an attack. I'm not certain running will happen today.

I'm on the couch Spirit of the Marathon. Seeing Frank Shorter at the start made me smile. Let's insert him here, and that's Steve Prefontaine's sister with us! The excitement of these runners puts me back to how I was a couple of years ago when I was at my peak performance and not having such terrible Meniere's issues.  I really miss it. It makes me want to run. To race! Heck I even said I'd almost like to do a third marathon (not Disney) where I can see how I do without an injury (I got hurt 17.5 miles into the Portland Marathon) or character photo stops to distract me. I hope that's a fleeting thought because really I don't feel a 26.2 desire anymore. Really I just desire to be able to run without fear of complete vertigo and nausea at any given moment. I think it might be a time for a. Is it to Coos Bay to have another little pep talk with Pre!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Dirty Texts

I have a confession.....  today I had an inappropriate, dirty text exchange with my dear friend's husband....

*She is the one in the top photo....

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Once Upon A Time...

Marathon #1
I was a runner.

In 2013 I did 14 races. I suppose to some that sounds like a lot - 3 of those alone were in January and part of the Walt Disney World Marathon weekend, and 2 were the Dumbo Double Dare - but I felt like I was hardly racing at all.  It's been nearly a year now since I was in marathon shape and about to do my second marathon as part of the Goofy Race and a Half Challenge.  I declared at the start of the year that I was essentially taking 2013 off from serious training. 2013 is done, and I really miss running! I'm ready to be back at it!

Meniere's - why I haven't been running.
So far this year I've run .... wait for it ... sit down so you don't fall ... TWO miles. That's it. My mind and body WANT to run, my inner ear has other plans. The year is young, but still I've spent basically all of it dealing with my pain in the ass Meniere's Disease. I'm constantly attached to walls at work when trying to walk from my desk to any other place. Yesterday I was so excited to run and ended up sleeping all afternoon, not because I wanted to. I'm over it - but sadly I can't change it so I have to just deal. So....

I've decided to get back closer to my old ways and work my way back to my regular monthly races! I think January might be race free since I have a ton going on, but I've already lined up a February race. March should be easy to find one - Shamrock is always lurking waiting for me to register so I can then bitch about how much I hate it. April brings my first ever Ragnar! Pretty much all of my running right now is just to get me back to where I was and ready for the relay. I am REALLY excited about it!! Portland Rock'n'Roll is registered for so I can go for a 3peat, and from there I'll just take it as I go and see what I feel like racing and what I don't. Who knows where this year will take me?!?! Eugene Half Marathon again perhaps? Kick that final 5K curse that gets me every time I run it? I have a new Garmin that is smaller than my old one, so I am ready to break her in and show her all my old training grounds and introduce her to all the weather!

I just realized I have to officially change my last name sometime before April -- I registered for Ragnar with my married name! First time ever typing that in, it was kind of strange to type -- but  heck of a lot easier to say!

Oh yeah, today I decided I want to start looking at races in Alaska. Running up there seems practical, right?!?! I found one I like, now I have to present it to Man Friend and consult with our Best Man to see if they will be around to entertain us if/when we decide to round up the sled dogs and head waaaaayyy north!

I think that's it for my "running" post. As I stare up at my poster of Steve Prefontaine on my wall ... I think tonight I'll run!