Sunday, March 13, 2011

ugh! major pain...

I mentioned that last week my running was pretty much non existent due to my back pain.'s still there. ugh! I was going to call the doc this week but hoped  prayed to every God out there that it would go away in time. Here I am, 9 days after hurting my back still unable to pick up my son without it hurting, I can't bend over, sitting up hurts like hell, and rolling over in bed takes about 2 minutes to do. Yea, that whole "going away" thing is not working. Looks like I'll be making a call to the docs next week.

I didn't want to let another week go by without logging any miles. I took it easy this week so that I didn't injure my back anymore then I already had...although, I'm not exactly sure what my injury is. I was pleasantly surprised that my back feels it's best when I am running, phew! I did a few speed workouts on the treadmill and remembered why I don't like doing speed workouts inside. When I push myself running, I'm known to toss my cookies. Mmmm, such an awesome time. As I was pushing myself on the treadmill I started to feel that awesome ohmygodithinkimgoingtopuke feeling in my throat. I started looking around for the closest place to throw up. There was a trash can not far from me...however, it had a top on it, not making it puke friendly. I was lucky enough to finish my workout and kept all fluids down!:-)

This weekend I went out for 2 runs. Saturday was a 4 mile run while pushing T in the stroller. Ruddley and I went out for the run together and took turns with the stroller. Oh boy that's hard! Today I went out on my own for a 6 mile run. Both days it took me a mile or so to get my back to loosen up and agree with my run. Today I stopped around mile 4 to stretch and as soon as I stopped my back tightened up and said "sorry sarah, no more running for you today!". I walked it out for a little bit and then finished up my run.I took things easy this week and didn't push things too hard, I was pleased with the fact that I felt pretty good. Looking forward to seeing what week 3 training brings.

In other news, my Syracuse boys are ranked 3rd in the East Region! I loooooove, looooooove, looooooove March Madness. I wish I had 2 weeks off from work to camp out on the couch and watch all the games. Sigh, I'm a big working girl now and that won't be happening anytime soon.

And finally, the cupcake marathon starts tomorrow! Some seriously awesome prizes available, guessed it....CUPCAKES!! yum.

dear back,
please don't let me down during the cupcake marathon.
love, sarah

have a great week! go 'cuse!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

live life full throttle

working in a hospital i am usually aware when people are trying to bring awareness to a cause of some kind. they are passing out their respective color ribbons, posters are hung on the walls, emails are sent out or flowers being sold in the lobby. i can't keep straight what month honors what illness or disability or what color represents what. the one i always remember is april. it's autism awareness month and we wear blue. actually i wear 2 blue bracelets year round, i never take them off.  another month that i have recently started to pay attention to is march. march is brain injury awareness month. one of my very close high school friend's father passed away after suffering a brain injury during a motorcycle accident in may 2006.

ill never forget that night. i had just gotten out of a rehearsal and i had a missed call from alisha. i was busy humming the songs we had been working on when i called her back. it had been a few weeks since we had talked and i was looking forward to catching up with her.

"hey 'lish...."
"sarah! my dad, he's dead"
"sarah! what am i going to do, who is going to walk me down the aisle"

she was sobbing and i couldn't believe what she had to say. the next bunch of days were a blur. it was at the end of the semester at college and i couldn't leave to go be with her. i called her everyday. alish was a week or 2 away from graduating from nursing school and 3 months away from getting married. despite everything she graduated from the university of maine with a degree in nursing and danced the night away at her wedding reception, dedicating my humps to her dad. claude was a crazy man and he loved that song.

alisha and her mom dancing to my humps at her wedding
 2 years later i got married and alisha was one of my bridesmaids. i got married at the same church my parents were married in. at the beginning of the rehearsal alisha asked me what the big bird hanging from the ceiling of the church was. i had no idea and so we asked the minister. he said "oh, that's claude. the kids in the sunday school made it". he offered to take it down for the wedding but there was no way i was going to let him do that. i really felt like claude was watching over us. seriously? who names a bird claude? it was meant to be. so he stayed.

at my wedding, with claude the bird watching overhead.
 every spring i remember claude. i think of him when i see all the motorcycles out on the road. i think about what an amazing dad he was to one of my best friends. i know he would be so proud of her day.  live life full throttle. it was claudes motto on life and since may 2006, i've adapted that philosophy.

alisha wrote a guest post for her college roommate and i wanted to share that with you today....

It started out as a beautiful spring day. My mom picked me up at my apartment early that morning and we headed north for a bridal shower. The sun was shining and although my mom was happy to be spending time with me I knew she was also thinking about how much she would have liked to be with my dad. He was headed out for the day on his motorcycle with their closest friends. My mom usually joins them and rides on the back of his bike, something they enjoyed doing as often as possible. When the bridal shower was over my mom dropped me off and headed home. It had been not even an hour since my mom left when I received a phone call from a close friend of our family, Sherri. It was a phone call I will NEVER forget. I could tell from the minute she said “hello” that something was wrong. “You need to get to the hospital,” I heard, “it’s your dad.” At that moment I felt my body go numb. Tears were pouring from my eyes, and I couldn’t stop my body from shaking. I was sitting there alone in my apartment (my husband, which was my fiancĂ© at that time, was out golfing with his friends). Alone, at a time when I needed someone more than ever. I don’t know how I managed to make it there, but I grabbed my keys and ran out the front door. Tears still pouring from my eyes, I drove to the hospital. I ran into the Emergency Department, still dressed in my skirt from the bridal shower. I was the first one to the hospital, living only five minutes down the road. The lady in registration brought me to the “family room.” That was the moment when I knew it wasn’t good, because usually when you are visiting someone in the ED they allow you in to see him or her. Instead she brought me to a room where I was again, alone. It seemed like an eternity, although only ten minutes had gone by before my mom, my husband, and my close friend Emma arrived. I was so thankful at that moment to have them there. One of the doctors came into the room where we were sitting to tell us that my dad had sustained a traumatic brain injury and that the prognosis was not good. My dad had crashed his bike (thank God my mom was not with him), hitting his head with such force that it was causing his brain to swell. At that moment a million thoughts came rushing to my head. It was ironic because I was in my last semester of nursing school and in my class we were learning about brain injuries. Everything the doctor was telling us, I understood, probably more than I wanted at that time. I knew that we were either facing a long road of recovery, or death. We were brought into a procedure room where they had just implanted a monitor in my dad’s skull that would measure his intracranial pressure. We were allowed to see him for a brief moment before they took him into the Intensive care unit (ICU). He was unconscious, hooked up to a ventilator and laying there motionless. I stood there looking over him and told him that I loved him before we were brought to the ICU waiting room. It was a while before they let us in to see him again. He was hooked up to monitors, IV’s, tubes everywhere. I sat down in a chair beside his bed and laid my head on his chest. I could still hear his heart beating, but I knew that the only thing keeping him alive at that moment were the machines. We spent the most horrifying 26 hours in the ICU hanging on to any ounce of hope we could find. The doctors told us that my dad had so much swelling in his brain that it caused “brain death,” meaning that the brain ceases to function, he was unable to breathe on his own and the only thing keeping his heart pumping was the ventilator that was breathing for him. Without the ventilator he would die. My mom and I knew we had to say goodbye, as hard as it was. They asked us if he was an organ donor, and we said “yes.” We watched as they turned off the ventilator and pronounced the time of death. The man I knew to be my father was gone. My life would be forever changed from that moment on.

It will be five years this May since his death and not a day goes by where I don’t think about him. Things are definitely different without him in our lives. He was the joy that held our family so close together. He brought smiles to everyone he had contact with. Everyone knew and loved my dad. I am so thankful for the time that I got to spend with him and will forever cherish those memories.

Since the death of my dad, I have graduated from nursing school and have become a rehabilitation nurse. I work daily with patients who have sustained brain injuries, those who have been lucky enough to survive. I am reminded daily of what it could have been. Not all brain injuries result in death. In fact, of the 1.7 million brain injuries that occur each year 52,000 die, 275,000 are hospitalized and 1.365 million are treated and released. Those patients that are hospitalized usually end up needing rehab, where they re-learn basic skills, such as walking or talking. The goal of rehab is to improve their abilities so they can function at home and in the community as independently as possible. Even though I have lost someone so important to me, I thank God everyday that I get to help others who are going through such life changing events. I see the joy that family members have when their loved one walks or talks for the first time. The joy the patient has when they are able to eat their first meal and not have to be fed through a tube, when they can go to the bathroom and not be incontinent, when they take their first steps, and when they can finally return home. I am blessed!

R.I.P Daddy 5/1/06, forever in my heart!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

pineland training week 1

i have 2 words to describe my first week of pineland training... EPIC FAIL!

monday we happened to get dumped with stupid snow but after work i went out for a run around town before going to pick ty up from daycare. i think i spent more of the run dodging patches of ice, piles of slush and crap that the cars were flinging at me as they drove by. since the town thinks its perfectly fine to not plow any sidewalks i had to jump into gianormous snow banks several times to avoid being hit. not really how i wanted day 1 to go.

wednesday i decided i would play it safe and did my run on the treadmill. gahhh i hate the treadmill. when i first got into running i loooove it and was scared to hit the road...what the eff was i thinking? i slogged my way through and checked off another run in the book.

thursday morning as i was getting ready for work i bent over to put my sock on and i felt a nasty shooting pain in my back and it shot down all the way to my ankle. i knew exactly what i had done because LAST FREAKING MONTH i did the same thing...except last time i was picking up a 20 pound baby in a ridiculously heavy carseat. eff eff eff...i couldn't move. i was on all fours for a while before i was finally able to pull myself up on to the bed. i laid on the bed for a while trying to stretch it out. seriously?? after about 15 minutes i was finally able to stand up. i kinda looked like the leaning tower of pisa though because i couldn't stand up straight. i hobbled my way through the day. it hurt 100 times more when i was sitting down then when i was standing up. needless to say i skipped thursdays run.

friday was a rest day and i went to see my doctor who is a DO so he tried adjusting things as best he could. however the part of my back he really needed to adjust wouldn't relax enough for him to do it. i was hoping to make up thursdays run on friday but still wasn't able to run.

friday night i drove to CT with my dad and was pretty stiff from riding in the car. i was hoping to get a short run in today but shap, shooting and sometimes throbbing pains down my leg kept me from yet another run!! this is not a good way to start my training.

tomorrow im signed up to run the irish road rover 5k... it will be a game time decision, not sure im going to run it.

on another and a lot more exciting note, i registered for the BAA 5K!!! whooo hoooo! im so pumped to be running it and crossing the boston marathon finish line. the 5k is about as close as i will ever get to taking part in the marathon. i know, i know im sure some of you are saying "dont ever say that". but lets be real, boston is not in my cards, especially with the new qualifying times. maybe someday ill raise a crap load of money and run for charity. im pumped to meet some of my blogging friends like erin, ally and morgan. im looking forward to seeing sam and jill again and the sunday red sox game....yeah, ill be there! i couldn't ask for a better weekend.
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