Sunday, November 18, 2007


wow. What can I say? It was so much fun. The boat, eh, I mean I never found myself puking or even wishing I could puke, but I can't say the rocking didn't get to me some. Davis seemed to love the motion and unstable footing. Luckily our room was only 2 feet wide and she just bounced back and forth between the walls.
Motion sickness aside, it was INCREDIBLE. Just like a bunch of old friends getting together. Not one weird or awkward moment. I only wished we had had more time together. I think we all had a little bit of blues after the trip. We are already planning for a new trip in 2009!

My Superman
Well, Daddy did compete, though he dropped out of the first event after swimming one lap in the ocean. He said he felt like he had a 2,000 pound weight on his chest and could not breathe. He was very disappointed and even more felt like he let everyone down. Of course it was NOT the case, but hard to make him not feel horrible. I think having his granddaughters or at least 5 of the 6 of them, there with him cheered him up. He did sign up for next years race and the training continues. My brother in law finished in an incredible 11.5 hours. He took 3.5 hours off his time from the IronMan he finished two years ago. All I can say is Go C! wow.

This years race did have one very tragic moment. It also made everyone very glad that my father did not push himself and try to compete without oxygen. A woman from Dallas and in the extended training group of my BIL's died. Yes, she died. 42 years old, in the best shape of her life. She died. She was pulled from the ocean after grabbing a hold of one of the safety canoes and saying "Help." She went under and they pulled her out. She never regained consciousness. Her three children were standing on the shore waiting to cheer her on to the bike event. Her husband was already in the bike portion and had to be located and taken to the hospital. She was on life support for several days before they said, "She's gone." There will never be answers on what happened. It's truly tragic. She was competing in this race to raise money for a Family Grief Support Center that had helped her and her three very young children after her husband was killed in a car accident 5 years ago. She remarried 2 years ago and now this. All I can think about is those poor children. And again those questions of WHY? Her husband and family and training partners said such amazing words about her and how in the end she would be happy hearing that she more than tripled her fundraising goal, and that the money was continuing to come in. She also gave life to many people as all of her organs were donated. But it's still tragic. Hard to think about how fragile we humans can be. One more reason to live every day to the fullest.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Two important but competely unrealted things. Cruisin' with Pinnies and My Superman

We're off on Saturday to take a cruise down to the Bahamas. I've never been on a cruise before and am slightly anxious about the whole boat thing. But we're meeting up with the Pinnies and the excitement is canceling out the anxiety. My Pinnies is a group of women that started out on a public message board of women trying to conceive. Our specific thread was about using acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine to boost your fertility. It grew into our own semi-private group. A public informational site is in the works as between the lot of us we are going through and have been through it ALL. The highs and lows of TTC. Births, miscarriages, maybe I am!, no I'm not, failed IVF cycles, cancelled IVF cycles, positive IVF cycles, donor egg cycles, donor embryo cycles, waiting for International adoptions, waiting for domestic adoptions, crazy effed-up cycles, bad genetic test results, premature ovarian failure, peri-menapause, surprise! pregnancies all around us, gaining weight, losing weight, family/friend relationships suffering, premature labor, NICU stays, bed rest, and losing babies.

I myself have gone through a few crappy things on that list and I am so thankful for these women. They have pulled me through more than one dark moment. Saved me from myself. I've only met a few of them in real life, but they are truly real friends, in every sense of the word. A few have traveled through NYC and we've gotten together and it's never felt strange of awkward...just like old friends getting together. I am so looking forward to meeting everyone in the flesh. No more virtual hugs. We're talking the real deal here. Everyone that has children is bringing their "Pinnie babes" I can't wait. One very special girl who is the same age as T&O would be will be getting her toes kissed. Her mother and I got our positive tests on the same day. What a Christmas gift it was! I know it's been hard on E to not feel... I don't want to say guilty, It's not the right word...maybe it's best to just say she feels. But little R is a REAL MIRACLE and she is so loved by her parents and by her pinnie aunties. Each of these pinnie babies, (actually, any baby) is a miracle. I just think once you know down to the very last minute detail of what has to happen for babies to be conceived, incubated, and safely can't say they are anything but a miracle.

I've gotten a little off track. I think it's because it's hard/impossible for me to describe my true feelings of love and gratitude for these women. They are from all walks of life, from all parts of this world and they are my true true friends. I am so excited to finally meet them and for them to meet Davis.

My father is Superman. Not in disguise, he's the real deal. Maybe every little girl thinks their father is Superman? But mine really is. No need for a cape or tights or an S on his chest to recognize it.

For as long as I can remember my Dad has been a doer. Determination and Perseverance are his middle names. He's always been active, running, tennis, golf, etc. He's always been involved in EVERY part of mine and my sister's lives. Even when we were younger and he traveled a lot, we always had a note in our lunch from him. I look back and think of how ungrateful I was at the time! I remember thinking, "S.T. has a Reese's in her lunch bag! And I get a poem from my Dad? Yippee." I'd give anything to have saved those napkins with daily poems from Daddy. He's always given back to others in the community and especially less fortunate than himself. When he worked downtown, he always packed two lunches. One he left on the same bench on his way in to work. He would look out his window when he arrived in his office and the lunch would always be gone. I thought that was so cool when I was little, still do.

He's always done what he thinks is right, despite it not being popular. I graduated high school in 1987. He was president of the school board at the time. He made all of the school campuses in our town non-smoking. Way before his time on that one. Even the outdoor sections were non-smoking. No teachers smoking, no parents smoking NOBODY. Let me just say that he was NOT a very popular dude. Hate is not a strong enough word to describe some people's feeling toward my Dad. But he really believed in it, and he got enough people behind him to make it happen. He didn't care if he was gaining enemies. I could list lots of things like this.

Speaking of lists: Before he turned 40 he had this List of things he wanted to do before he turned 40. Run a marathon, check. 100 mile bike race, check. It went on changed as the years passed by, things were marked "done" and new things were added. 40 came and went and the list became what to do before he turned 50. Skydiving, check. This one he took me along for the ride, or should I say jump. But we didn't do the standard tandem jump where you are attached to an instructor. He said, "I'm doing this ONCE and I'll do it on my own." So we took a course and jumped by ourselves! You had two instructors holding on until you pulled your own rip you're semi-protected, or as much as you could be. Mom was not happy about this one. But wow, it was incredible to share that with him. He took me on a trip to Costa Rica backpacking with doctors and dentists aiding the very very poor. We built a school together in Chile. We climbed to the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro and stood at the highest point in Africa. Together. He's taught me so much, not through only his words but through his actions. Mind over matter, do not give up. Ever. He climbed Kili with a pinched nerve in his neck that only hurt when he was "Standing, sitting, or lying down." I'm pretty sure camping in Africa for three weeks and hiking up a really tall mountain falls under at least one of those. No one else on our team even knew it, he never complained. Not once.

I haven't done everything with him. I'm not that crazy! As the years have gone by he's completed several marathons, one up a mountain to the top of Pike's Peak CO, several 100 M bike races, bungee jumped, built homes for the poor in Mexico, it goes on and on.

One thing on his list has been there from the start. The Iron Man. Yup. That's a 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike, and 26.2 mile run. None of which sound completely nuts until you realize all of this is expected to be completed in the. Same. Day. In fact less than a day. You have to finish under 18 hours to get your medal.

My sister's husband completed an Iron Man last year. So that started wheels turning. Literally. Let the training begin! The race is this Saturday in Florida. Unfortunately my Dad got sick last week. BAD flu bug. I don't ever EVER remember my Dad being sick. Even when he was, he was always, "Fine." Doctor schmoctor. Miss a day of work!?! No way. So we were all pretty worried when he missed five days of work in a row and went to the doctor TWICE. I am hoping he doesn't try to push it...but something tells me now that he feels "85.4% better" he'll be competing. And I have a weird feeling that he'll finish too, maybe one second under 18 hours, but he will finish.

Even if he doesn't, he will still be Superman to me.

How's that for catching up on the ole blog? Whole lotta words, huh?