Tuesday, September 25, 2012

A few thanks.

Thank you everyone for the sweet comments, likes, messages, etc., yesterday, I really appreciate them all!!!

Though I was the one who ran, I feel like a owe a few people thanks, so here it is and I promise to then move on to a different topic....vacation.

To the people on the sidelines:

You may think what you're doing is insignificant, but can I tell you how wrong you are.  You have no idea how much it means to those who are running.  The fact that you'll stand on the side of the street (even in your pjs) to cheer on complete strangers, says a lot about you as a person.  You have no idea how your cheers or sign that screams "Pain is temporary, quitting is forever!" may be the one thing that keeps that one runner from quitting at that moment.  I recently ran a race that was in a gated community and there was not one single person along the race way cheering us on.  It was a long six miles.  Its crazy how just because of the fact there were people cheering us on the entire 13 miles, that the half seemed shorter than the six miler with no one there.  Thanks for getting up early on a Saturday and standing on your porches to cheer us on!  I now want to not only race, but stand on the sidelines every so often, to return the favor.

To my family who came to watch:

I had no clue where y'all were along the course and I was honestly struggling by that time.  By the time I saw you guys, I had hit the mark of running the farthest than I ever have before, but I still had a ways to go.  You guys were at the perfect spot at the perfect time.  Seeing you guys gave me the push I needed to finish.  Thank you again for getting up before dawn to be there.  It really means the world to me.

To Nic:

Thanks for yelling at me when I need it.  Thank you for not letting me belittle myself and my accomplishments like I so often tend to do and for reminding me to take pride in whatever I do.  Over this nine month journey, you have said the words "I'm proud of you" to me more than anyone else.  Thank you so much for believing in me when I didn't believe in myself.  Being I know you and our weird ways, hearing those words from you means so much.  It's crazy how you can be standing in a crowd of 6,000 and feel more alone than ever.  Though I know I wasn't, while standing in the starting line, I felt like I was the only one there without a friend to run with and having to do this totally alone.  I had honestly just moments before cried a few tears to Dave and told him it sucked I had no one to run with. You were the last person I talked to while walking towards the starting line and you said the exact words I needed to hear at that moment. Thank you for those words!!!

To Alison: 

You'd think after twenty five years, I'd realize just how lucky I am to have you in my life.  Like I said to Nic, I was feeling so alone while standing there in a sea of thousands and then you called.  You told me the words I needed to hear and remember.  Your voice and words stayed with me the entire 13 miles and it worked.  I did what you told me to and I exceeded my own expectations.  Thank you for being there when I needed a friend.  I wished so badly that you were right there next to me saying those words, but there's next time!!! : )  Thank you for always listening to my endless running chatter.  It's so great to have someone who can talk about running just as much as you can and not get sick of it.  Thank you for your words of encouragement these past few months, I wouldn't have been able to do it without you behind me pushing me to.  Can't wait to share the experience with you!!!

To my husband:

Thank you for giving up sleeping in on your off day these past nine months,  just so I could go run.  Thank you for giving up your weekend to be there with me at my first one.  Thank you for getting up at 4am to drive me to the race and stand with me before the start.  Thank you for cracking jokes and making me laugh when I needed a distraction from the nerves.  Thank you for not walking around at 6am shirtless, even though it was a sweltering 54 degrees! ; )  I owe you so many thanks for so many things, there is not enough room on this post.  So, I'll just keep it at Thank you.

To my Livi:

You don't even know this, but thank you for being my inspiration to tackle this thing.  Not only did I do this for myself, I wanted to do this to show you that you can do anything you set your mind to.  Over the past ten years, I've lost that mind set that I could do anything.  I've gotten discouraged and derailed.  I know you will, we all do at some point in life, but please try to never lose that mind set.  Know that you can always do anything you work for.  That is the key...."work for."  I know your little and won't remember being there or running to hug me when you saw me come around the corner at mile 11, but I hope one day you can look at the pictures and be inspired.  Mostly, thank you for that hug at mile 11.  It was the most memorable part of my day.


Monday, September 24, 2012

I did it.

I did it!!!

(I know I look like a hot mess, but I was flying high at this point)

Not only did I do it, I exceeded my own expectations.

As most of you already know, this past Saturday I ran and completed in my first 1/2 marathon.

I ran 13.1 flipping miles!!!

I am most proud to say I RAN EVERY STEP OF THE WAY!!!!

Since my training got sidetracked over the past two months, I went in giving myself a lot of leeway.

"It's okay to stop and walk."
"Your only goal is to finish."
"Walk the hills and run the rest."
"Don't worry about time.....just finish."

However, I took it slow and steady.  By mile 8, I realized I hadn't stopped once and at that moment I knew I could do it.  My mantra then turned to....

"keep going"
"One foot in front of the other."

And, I didn't stop.  I ran every single step and every single hill.

Honestly, I'm more proud of that right there than I am of my time.

(my official time)

Saturday was such an emotional day.  Y'all know I'm a crier and there were lots of tears.

I cried beforehand from nerves.  I cried while standing in my corral when my two best friends called to tell me how proud they already were of me, right at the moment I needed it most.  I cried at mile 9 when it felt like my knees were going to give out and I couldn't go up one more hill (I went up another 5 after however).  I cried at mile 11 when I saw my family for the first time.  I cried when I saw the finish line just yards ahead of me.


(cue the tears at both of these moments)

Saturday, I knew what I had accomplished, but it hadn't quite sunk in yet.  Sunday morning however, I woke up feeling way proud of myself.  I woke up feeling like I could do anything.  It's crazy to think that only nine months ago, I couldn't run a 1/2 of a mile and Saturday, I ran over 13!!!

I finally said out loud to someone the other day that this was such a big deal to me, not so I can say "I've ran a half marathon" but so I can say "I set a goal and I reached it."  To be quiet honest, I feel like my twenties were filled with a bunch of unfinished business.  I never finished college, I never had a "real" job, I wasn't cut out for foster care, I couldn't get pregnant again, and let's be honest, I couldn't even give birth like a normal person.  Though yes, I married my best friend, have an awesome marriage and a beautiful daughter, in my own personal view, I felt like my twenties were filled with a bunch of failures on my part.  The half marathon fell just one month  and one day after my 30th birthday and it became a way to start off the new decade with the mind set that I can accomplish anything I work for.

So, it's more than just bragging rights, its a new start for me.

I know running is not for everyone, but can I tell you how it was such an amazing thing to be there with 5,000 other women all working for the same goal.  I know each and every woman there had a story of their own and why they were there running.  I mean, most people don't sign up to run 13 miles just because.  I saw several women with shirts that said "I run ________."  and they had their reasons written in.  I think it would have been awesome to hand those out to every woman there. 

(there were about 600 more women behind me)

And yes, I'd do another one in a heartbeat.

I may or may not have already thrown out the suggestion of two for next year.  So, if you want to run one, call me.

I have a few thank yous to give out tomorrow and then I promise to stop all the half marathon talk....for now.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

First Day 2012

This morning we officially headed back to school.

 (Are you shocked I actually got pictures with my real camera? Yeah, me too! Just for you Mom!!!)

After I spent all last week searching for new schools and fretting over what to do with her, a series of events over the weekend landed us back at the preschool she attended last year.  I was knocking on their office door at opening time Tuesday morning begging for her space back.  Fortunately, it was still open.    More on that tomorrow.

So, we're back at our old school and with our familiar Ms. A as her teacher and we're both happy about that.  I was impressed with the other schools we looked at, but we're familiar with this one. I'm sure she would have adjusted perfectly at any other school, but she's still my baby and can sometimes be pretty sensitive, so my mama heart worries about those things.

To say she was excited would be an understatement. She was so excited in fact, we honestly left the house 45 minutes earlier than what we needed to and just drove around town for a bit and then sat in the school parking lot for a few minutes.  We went in to talk to her teacher before the other kids got there and I could already tell she was going to have a great day.  She was dancing around the classroom and already talking Ms. A's ear off.  A totally different child than a few weeks ago.  She was sooooooo excited to be back.

The girl has seriously not been this excited about anything in awhile. 
For pick up, I went in to talk with her teacher a sec just to make sure she had a good day.  Ms. A said she was fantastic and didn't miss a beat. Ironically, since she was sick enough last week that I wouldn't have sent her, she really only missed one day of school and hadn't missed much. 

When we got in the car, she talked non stop.  It was fun because last year, she wasn't talking as well and only gave me short one word answers, but today, she was giving me complete sentences of what she did during her day.  I don't want to wish away time, but I'm loving it the older she gets.  It seems like each stage we move to just becomes more fun than the last.


So, school is officially back in session at the Mabrey house and to be honest, I'm not sure which of us is more excited about it.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

First Day~ September

I'm excited for September.  
We have a crazy month coming up, but I like to stay busy, so you won't find me complaining.  
This summer has seemed to drag on for us. We have often referred to it as the never ending summer.
Even though its still 90 degrees outside, seeing the first day of September finally show on the calendar just seems to scream the beginning of fall.

Here's how we spent our "unofficial" first day of Fall.

 Praise Jesus for the 24 hour PBS station!!!

Olivia leaving me to spend the day with Nana & Papa.

Fail~I am no doubt hair challenged  

David flew out early (as you saw above) for New Orleans yesterday morning and this was my first hearing from him since he had gotten there.  It ended up being a short trip and he's coming home today!!!

I'm sorry, but I was little shocked to come around the corner and see this.  Totally expected at a Wal-mart, not Target.  What made it so funny was because it was just a dad and his three kids.
Only a dad would put on shoes and not think of clothes.  Gotta love Dads!

We were at Cracker Barrel...Sorry about the creepy kid behind them.

How did you spend your First Day?

Link up with Nicole: