Thursday, May 31, 2012

Pictures From The Boy's Birthday

Tuesday we took The Boy out to eat for his birthday.  His choice was The Cheesecake Factory which is one of his favorites.  The last time we were there was about this time last year for The Boy's high school graduation.  We had this kind of cake then.

 We passed up on the cheesecakes although they looked yummy, since we had a birthday cake back home.

The Boy still thinks I'm a little weird for taking pictures of the food when we go to restaurants.  He's a good sport about it though.  Even took the camera and got a picture of his own food for me.

I had the Chicken stuffed tortillas my favorite.  I rarely get anything else when we go the the Cheesecake Factory.

The Boy had the burrito.  It was huge so he took some home and had it for lunch the next day.  See he takes good food pictures!

The Murph had an omelet with mushrooms, onions, green peppers and tomatoes.  They serve omelets all day long at the Cheesecake Factory.

The Boy was a little afraid to eat the cake because he wasn't sure if it was a cake or a big, nasty burger.  It looked like a huge hamburger, but it was a cake and was very tasty.   I've had three pieces already.

The guys didn't dress up at all, but I usually do when I go out.  The Murph wore shorts and The Boy wore khaki pants and a t shirt.  It looked like the bottom of his pants legs were all chewed up and his hair is back to the normally wild disarray. <sigh>

Shoes:  Kenneth Cole Reaction
Purse:  Milly

 I wore my newish Kenneth Cole Reaction sandals and a dress from BCBGMAXAZRIA purchased in 2009.  I love sparkly shoes!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

My Kona Inspired Contest Entry

Click here to watch my Kona Inspired entry.   Please be sure to vote at the bottom left hand corner. Thanks!!

A couple of months ago, Ironman started a contest called Kona Inspired which would allow regular athletes, who may not be fast enough to earn a Kona slot because of busy lifestyles or physical challenges, to tell their story of how they live the Ironman mantra "Anything is Possible".  From the entrants, they are picking 8 to compete in Kona this October.

I immediately started working on my own video to submit into the contest and tell my story of how I live the mantra "Anything is Possible".  Believe me - around my house ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE!

I finished the video and then was afraid to submit it because I set the video to the song "Beginning and the End"and after all the copyright issues popping up and all, well, I didn't want Sony or any other music group coming after me.  And I wanted to do the right thing (of course)

(I was really just afraid of Sony)

So, I decided to send an email to the group's manager, who then directed me to the correct place to go (no, not there) which was Provident Label Group,  a division of Sony.  They said I needed to get a master license and needed some information from me.  I filled out the request they sent and waited.

And waited.

Finally, last week I hear back from them telling me that they approved my request.   They probably got some good laughs and some"who the heck is this person" as it was tossed around like a hot potato or stuck on some unlucky person's desk.   Nobody knowing exactly what to do with it.  They were very nice and polite about it though and apologized for the delay saying that this was such an "unusual request" and had to go to many different levels.

I love the song and had decided that if it didn't get approved, I wouldn't enter the contest.  None of the other things I tried with the video seem to mean as much to me as that song set to my story.  

To me the song which is about life having beginning and end is very much like an Ironman, which has a beginning and an end.  In Ironman, just as in life, sometimes in the middle of it you have to dig deep and find the strength to keep going, pull yourself through the rough patches, to finish strong and never, ever give up.  To me that strength comes from my faith in God.

I am just glad I finally have approval and it didn't end up in the garbage. 

So anyway, here it is so please vote for me!  Take pity on me! 

I'm slow, but qualifying for Kona has been a dream of mine since I did my first Ironman in Florida back when I was faster.  Faster, but still not fast enough.  I would have to take almost 4 hours off my total Ironman time to even have a chance to get a Kona slot.

Vote for me!

Pictures Of Kona 

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Ironman Hipster Kitty

I was feeling inspired to create more Hipster Kitty memes.   So.....  I created some Ironman Hipster Kitty memes....  The 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike, 26.2 mile run Ironman Hipster Kitty.  Of course, The Boy made me get his approval before I posted this.  He said the first two were "ok, but kind of stretching it, most weren't too bad, but the last one was the best."  Even got a laugh out of the hipster boy and his approval to post.  He said he wasn't going to let me "ruin" Hipster Kitty.

Hipster Kitty is way to hip for a regular Ironman Triathlon.

My Life Changed 20 Years Ago Today!

Twenty years ago today my life changed forever.  I gave birth to my first and only child and twenty four hours later my family was putting me on life support trying to keep me alive.  I was rushed out of the cozy little maternity suite where The Boy and I were suppose to share bonding moments,  straight to intensive care.  I didn't see The Boy again for three days.

After giving birth, my heart failed and most of the 40 pounds of extra fluid ended up in my lungs.  I had a severe and blinding headache and was throwing up.  Nobody realized my heart was failing until I woke up around 3 a.m the next day and couldn't take a breath.

I could hear this ominous gurgling noise coming from my lungs when I tried to push air out and I could get very little air sucked back in my lungs.  I had no clue what was happening.  I called the nurse and first just asked for water.  By the time she came back in the room I had collapsed and was gasping for air.  Next thing I know, the room is swarming, full of people and I'm being rolled away somewhere.

During that time all I could think of was breathing, staying calm, sleeping so when I woke up it would all be better and I could take my baby home.  Hoping that when I woke up, the nightmare would be over and I could get out of there with my baby.  I also became very concerned about breast feeding which was something I obviously couldn't do with tubes going down my throat and all kinds of drugs being pumped in my veins.

After they took me off the respirator, I convinced my Pulmonary doctor and my Obstetrician to get a breast pump sent up.  It was sort of surreal to be lying in intensive care pumping breast milk.  The lactation consultant told me it was good to get the old milk out and stimulate the milk flow since I couldn't nurse.  Then she changed out some of my meds so I could take the ones she considered safe to consume while breast feeding once I got home.

I had wanted a drug free natural birth with no epidural.  My plan was to drop by the hospital, shoot the baby out as quickly as possible with no drugs and then get the heck out of there the next day.

God laughed at my plans.

Unfortunately it didn't happen that way.  I had a really scary moment during labor when The Boy's heart rate went down ( I think they gave me a too big dose of pitocin ((?))).  I was shivering as they flipped me back and forth hoping to get the cord off the baby (if that was what was wrong) and then they injected me with something to get my heart rate up to get his up.

 I was convinced to get an epidural and I was terrified after that episode.  It was all a blur.  A really bad dream.  I was at their mercy.  The Boy and I are both lucky to have made it through all that.

I can't say I have good memories about that day 20 years ago, but once The Boy and I got out of that hospital and got home, my life changed for the better.  Having my son was the best decision I ever made. Even during those frustrating days of school, teachers, IEP's, homework, ugggg and everything else, no regrets.   The only regret is that he did not have a brother or sister to grow up with.  I was too afraid to have another baby and my Cardiologist said it wouldn't be a good idea.

My diagnosis was Postpartum Cardiomyopathy.

I spent an entire year with very little sleep, monitoring The Boy to make sure he was breathing.  Panicking every time I felt like I couldn't breathe or had any kind of chest pain.  Being the household breathing monitor is a really tough job.  My anxiety attacks started during that time.  I don't exactly remember when I stopped with the obsessive monitoring, I just remember waking up one morning and I had actually slept through the entire night.  The baby was ok, I was ok, everything was ok.  We were all still breathing.  After that it got easier and easier.

Every year I look back on that day and thank God that I survived so that I could be here to watch The Boy grow up.  This day for the past 20 years, I'm thankful.  Thankful for my wonderful son that God blessed me with and thankful that I am here to celebrate his 20th birthday with him and hopefully many more to come.

I always thought I was so tough and would be one of those women who could just squat down in a field and give birth in 2 seconds flat.  No drugs necessary.  Ha!   Even giving birth I'm such a drama queen!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Happy Memorial Day

Today is Memorial Day.  A day to remember all those men and women who have died while serving in the United States Armed Forces.  It is also considered the beginning of summer and the past few days it has felt like summer around here.   It is very hot and very humid.

The Running Nazi and I met this morning and ran 10 miles trying to beat the heat.  It was still very warm and humid even at 6:30 a.m.  Glad we got that over.  I'm spending the rest of the day in the pool.

The Boy was Best Man in his dad's wedding Saturday.  He said that everything went smoothly.  He got to do the things he wanted to do with his friend Friday and Sunday, but still showed up on Saturday for the wedding.

He never got his hair cut, but his grandparents got hold of his hair with plenty of hair spray and managed to get it looking pretty good.  It will most likely still be plastered to his head in that same style for the next month or so.

He also got home an hour earlier than I expected and The Murph and I were out with friends.  I got a call from The Boy with the security alarm going off in the background and The Boy asking me for the code.  He didn't remember it and he didn't call me to let me know he was on his way home.

Good thing he was able to get in touch with me or he would have some explaining to do when the police showed up at the house.  Would not be a good thing for The Boy.  If he didn't remember the code, he probably wouldn't remember the password either.  Not good!  That was Saturday.

Then Sunday, his friend drops him off at the house early and we aren't home yet and he has forgotten his key.  He calls me to let me know he's home, but doesn't say anything about not being able to get in the house.  We take our time getting home and when we arrive, he's sitting outside, locked out.

It's going to be an interesting summer.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Special Needs Ryan Gosling Friday!

It's Friday and time for Special needs Ryan Gosling.  Yea!  TGIF!  You can find more of these memes on Sunday Stillwell's blog over at Adventures in Extreme Parenthood.  

And wondering if he's doing this in preschool, what's high school going to be like?

I actually did get a call from the preschool once when The Boy was 4 years old.  He had locked horns with his new preschool teacher, who he didn't like much and was sent to the director's office.  The preschool director called me and told me I needed to come get him.  He was giving everybody trouble and had threatened to kick the door down.  

So thankful for Skype since The Boy is in college now!
This was so not like him.  It didn't take long to figure out that he was having trouble adjusting to the new teacher.  His original teacher left mid-year to become a missionary.   That wasn't a good year for The Boy.

This hasn't been a good week for me.  I had a feeling it wasn't going to be and tried to prepare myself mentally for it, but no matter how prepared you think you are, it's never easy when it happens.  Hope next week is better.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

What Makes This Cat Tick?

This is the first time I've seen this cat stay on his back so long.  After taking some pictures of him, he was still showing his stuff so I managed to video a short clip on my camera.  He stayed like this for probably another 15 minutes.  Don't know why.  We couldn't really tell if he was stuck or not.  He's such a goofy cat.

This pose reminds of one of those Felix the cat pendulum clocks where the cat's tail twitches back and forth.

These are some of the pictures we took of him in this very odd position.

Thursdays Are For Bricks

Not this kind of brick
I woke up this morning feeling very anxious.  I couldn't breathe very well.  I felt like an elephant was sitting on my chest, squeezing all the air out.  Anxiety always triggers my asthma and this time of the year my lungs are struggling for air anyway.

I went to bed feeling like this and I woke up feeling like this.  It started yesterday with The Boy and the hair cut incident.  Things are quiet down in The Boy's room right now, but at any moment, one phone call from his dad and things could explode.  Usually in my face.

The Boy woke me up this morning with a run down of what his dad plans to do tomorrow (in preparation for the wedding) with him at the last minute.  The Boy was already planning ways out of it and wants to go with his friend and do something else.  His dad wants to pick him up around 1:00 and go pick up the tux.  Then he expects The Boy to hang out at his office with him while he works the rest of the day.

First of all, this last minute running around stuff usually doesn't work very well with The Boy.  He has Asperger's.  He likes things planned out and given plenty of time to prepare himself for things he doesn't really like to do.   Hopefully, his dad telling him ahead of time will help prepare him a little.

The biggest problem is that his dad doesn't except the fact he has Asperger's.  He doesn't like what he calls "labels".  He would rather hang onto the fact The Boy behaves this way because of bad parenting.  Not his, but mine since I "won" custody and just haven't taught him proper manners.

I don't really like labels either but sometimes they are necessary to help classify special needs children. What can be bad are the false or incorrect stereotypes that can go with a label of Asperger's or ADD.  I recently came across a really good article on the subject.  I feel the same way about labels as this author does here.

Second, in this last minute whirlwind of getting things for the wedding and finishing up work related things, it might get a little bit stress full for the dad and from past experience, The Boy shuts down during these times.  Instead of speeding it up and getting things done, there could be an opposite reaction.

In the end, The Boy suffers.  And when The Boy suffers because of his dad's lack of patience and understanding, I get major league stressed out.

It's all bad.

And there's still that hair cut thing.  Something that The Boy really dislikes but has found someone who he can tolerate and actually likes now.  She was very surprised a couple of months ago when he actually started talking to her while she was cutting his hair.  She probably asked him something about computers.

I'm still waiting on what's going to go down on that little issue.  That's a really "hairy" issue!

Not being able to breath very well and having this sense of doom floating around over my head, I didn't feel very motivated to go to the gym.  I had to force myself to go with The Murph today.

When I got there I thought I would just get on the exercise bike for a few minutes for an easy spin, then I remembered today is Thursday.  Crap!  Thursday for me are brick days.  And bricks are a tough workout no matter how short.

This kind of brick
In the triathlon world, a brick workout is where you bike first and then run to help train your muscles and cardio system to adapt quickly to this transition during a triathlon. Swim, bike, run thing.  It can also mean swim first then bike to get you use to getting on the bike after coming out of the water.  The reason it's called a brick workout is because that's usually the way your legs feel when you start to run off the bike.

Bricks help teach your body to move the flow of blood from the muscles you use while biking to the muscles you use while running more efficiently.  The faster your body can do this off the bike, the better your run will be.

Me, one of my bikes and my training buddy
I rarely do swim/bike bricks since I rarely swim anymore unless I'm training for at least a 1/2 Ironman.  My new gym doesn't even have a pool.

For the past 12 years I have always done a brick workout on Thursday.  It's mandatory for me.  I can do it on my real bike out on the road or with my bike on a trainer or on an exercise or spin bike.  I can run either on the roads or the treadmill with any combo of the above bike rides.  It can be any length from 20 minutes bike/10 minute run on up to 2 hour bike/1 hour run.

It's Thursday so I just have to do it.

My first bike.  Probably an antique now.
I sucked it up and did a really short bike and then a really short run.  Then I did weights.  I really felt a little better after I worked out and my breathing is better.  Much better.

I'm still waiting for that bomb to drop though.  It could get ugly.

My little training buddy.  We've made up since yesterday.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Phantom Enjoying His Day Before The Bath

Phantom was let out for a little while today while I was outside.  Then he had a really good bath just in case any fleas tried to set up housekeeping on him.

He loves being outside.  While he was out a huge hawk landed on the fence and perched there for a while.  I hope it wasn't checking to see if Phantom was good enough to be his next tasty dinner.

Wonder what hawks eat??

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Love These ZiGi Sandals And Lunch With The Boy

Bebe Dress
ZiGi Shoes

They may not look comfortable, but they really are after you get use to being much higher up than normal.  I love to wear these types of platform sandals when I go out in the evening at the beach instead of my flat sandals.   It's a dressier alternative to flats and the heels don't get stuck in the boardwalk.

The shoes and dress were a birthday present to me from The Murph.  I wore them yesterday when The Boy and I went out to lunch.   You will probably recognize The Boy below...

What attractive hands!

We were planning on eating at his favorite Mexican restaurant, but by the time we got there they had stopped serving lunch.  Crap! 

 So we ended up going across the street to Wings.  He had a burger and I had a salad.

We both felt a little sick after eating all that greasy food, but it was good.  It was already after 2:30 pm by the time we got to the restaurant and it was almost empty.  This was good because when The Boy started meowing loudly only the waiter heard and he just ignored it.

Overall, we had fun and he even applied for a job at one of the stores nearby.

Fingers crossed!