And then she ran...

Today was the day, the day I ran. It was my first 5k, something I have been working towards for a few months. I never thought I'd be a runner but today I guess I officially am.

The weather was perfect. Cool and overcast, but no rain. Breezes just when you needed them. I don't think it could have been better. We'd gotten there a little early. As I'm new to races I didn't know exactly how it all works and the control freak in me needed to have all my ducks in a row. Turns out we could have arrived twenty or thirty minutes later but hey, now I know.

The race itself went really well too. I was able to drop into my normal pace (maybe a few seconds faster) and I ran. I ran and ran and ran. Further than I normally would before taking a walking break (yep I still have to walk sometimes, even after months of training). I suspect this is in part due to adrenaline. So I ran, until THE HILL. It was bigger than I suspected, and I don't even like little hills, not a bit. So I walked up the hill and started running as soon as there was some relief from the ascent. Stupid hill. I finished three seconds slower than I wanted to. THREE seconds! Arrrggg! But I still did it, and I felt good the whole time, and I felt fine after. So that is a huge accomplishment. Last year I was still hobbling around in that stupid orthopedic boot, this year I ran. :)

Here's a pic of me just before the race. Scott was a good hubby and went down with me and waited for me at the finish line.

The shirt I'm wearing is not the actual race shirt (Which is not even remotely cute or adorable! Who designs those things??). Instead I decided to wear a shirt from To Write Love on Her Arms (TWLOHA).

This is from their website:
To Write Love on Her Arms is a non-profit movement dedicated to presenting hope and finding help for people struggling with depression, addiction, self-injury and suicide. TWLOHA exists to encourage, inform, inspire and also to invest directly into treatment and recovery.

That's just the start of their vision. I'd encourage anyone and everyone to go read the entire story. It's what hope and healing are all about.

I chose to wear the shirt in honor of my friend Stephanie who took her own life earlier this year. A group of her friends did another walk/run today in her honor and I wasn't able to join them as I'd already registered for this race. I thought this was a good way to feel connected to them and Steph. It's funny, even as I concentrated on running today, maintaining my pace and not turning my ankle, my thoughts went to her a few times and I found myself quite emotional. Twice I had to talk myself out of tears.

I don't know how many more races I will do, but I think from this point forward they will always include some reference to TWLOHA. Just my reminder that there is other suffering and pain out there. No matter how long or hard I run, there are people out there who are more exhausted, in more pain, needing support and sometimes a little help to the finish line.

I'd like to think that Steph was with me today, making it easier for me and keeping the skies clear.

All in all, it was a great experience and I think I'll do another one, or two...

Family of Two

Stacey, I hope you don't mind that I stole your blog title, it just fits so well and really spoke to me!

I just finished reading a post from a fellow blogger, (hi Stacey!) who always offers me a great perspective on infertility and the emotions, issues, and realities that surround it. In her most recent post she mentions her family of two. This really stuck with me, as I also have a family of two. For nearly ten years of marriage Scott and I have been two. Despite hoping, praying, and taking medically assisted steps, we're still two. Hoping for three.

This past year I've made a few small steps in acknowledging that my family is indeed just that. If you're on our Christmas card list you might have noticed that we had a cute little picture of the two of us on it. I decided it was time to stop waiting to do that. Waiting until I could put up cute little pics of our adorable wide eyed children. I have been waiting TEN years to put a photo on our Christmas card! Just last month I made plans to have our family photos taken while we're on vacation. I've hesitated on this for years, thinking people would think it odd, or that it wasn't something you really do when it's just two. The truth is, I wish I'd done it years ago. Our wedding photographer lost all of our negatives so I was never able to order more than the original album we got after our wedding. Ten years later I have hardly any nice photos of the two of us. What was I thinking? How many times have I thought about all those beautiful family photos everyone else has, dreamed about our own, cute little pics of us holding hands, or just our silhouettes with a sunset, just something pretty! We deserved to be documented. Just because we haven't added a little bundle doesn't mean we shouldn't have those photos. Families come in all shapes and sizes and they are all important. Why it took me this long to realize this is beyond me. Growing up the only child of a single parent, I knew then that just us two made a family.

It's hard to explain, and I'm not sure I even know where to begin, but even now having just typed out the words 'Family of Two' I still feel odd. I know it to be true, but to someone on the outside they may not see that. Will people think we're weird for having family photos taken? Do people think it's odd when I type out a yearly Christmas letter to tuck into our cards? Obviously those aren't the things that make a family a family and I don't need approval from the outside world, but knowing that, I still want people to understand. Does that make sense? I want people to know that we're a family.

So I'm adopting Stacey's term from here on out. We're not hoping to start a family, we're hoping to add to ours.


I need sleep. It's been a busy few days and the weekend was anything but restful. On a happy note the back yard is looking super amazing and we're almost ready for summer! If only the sunshine would come out to see us. Spring was here for a few days and then headed south for warmer weather. Sigh.

I feel like we've been running non stop for the past few weeks. Girls weekend was a nice little break and we had a fantabulous time in the great city of Bend. If for some reason we couldn't live in Portland anymore, I'd move to Bend in a heartbeat! Other than girls weekend though it's been non stop something or other. It's going to be like that for the next three weeks too. But then we will be rewarded with a trip to guaranteed sunshine in MEXICO! YIPEE!

Scott's parents are taking all of us there to stay in their beautiful timeshare in Mazatlan. We've been a few times before and simply adore the place. In fact Scott's sister likes it so much she decided to get married while we're there. So it's going to be a great vacation and a celebration. Best of both worlds. Now if we can just keep the motor running for three weeks!

Did I mention that I'm training for a 5k that I run in a few weeks too? Yep, I have a lot to do....but first sleep, on freshly washed, warm out the dryer sheets.