Monday, May 12, 2008

8 Weeks

Well, after a fun-filled and adventursome weekend, I made it home - safe and sound - back to Pensacola. Nathaniel was happy to see me, and The House Monster was extatic. And while it's great to be back home with my Other Half and Kitty, I find myself a bit sad about leaving my friends.

I don't know how to describe last weekend, except for magical.

It was simply fantastic seeing Mary and Ashley all over again. And while I wasn't racing (and there were a few tears at the start of the W25-29 wave), I loved being in the atmosphere, cheering people on, participating on some level in this sport.

So today, naturally - I felt myself a little sad.

I miss my friends, miss the beach... but will always hold dear the memories that we created.

Thanks Mary and Ashley - I love you guys!

And, for the record, Mary invited Ryan to be an honorary member of Camp HTFU, after hearing his rendition of becoming an Ironman last year at Florida. The poor guy had a faster bike split than run - caused by severe internal GI distress. Vomit and poop don't even begin to describe what this guy went through.

But after stumbling through the final 5 miles, he finally heard, "Ryan Barnett...." and his first thought was, "God? Is that you? Have I died?"

And then he crossed the finish line.

I've never seen Mary Eggers laugh as much as she did Saturday after the race. She was all smiles, listening to Ryan tell his story. Without getting too much into the graphic details, I caught Melissa - his super wife and fellow sherpa extraordinaire - giving me a disgustetd look.

And I returned it.

Ew - boys are gross.

But Ryan did stellar - finishing his race a mere 5:00 off his goal time, and grabbing some serious hardware in the process. 2nd Clydesdale - Congrats Ryan!

And today - well - toady marks the 8 wek anniversary of my accident. Has it really been 8 weeks? Wow. Time has really flown by. However, looking back, 8 weeks would have felt like an eternity from a hospital bed.

I have learned so much about myself through this process, through this Journey. And while the accident was unfortunate, nearly everything that has happened since has been wonderful.

So in celebration, I'm writing about the top 8 funny things that have happened since my crash. Enjoy!

8) Being able to pick up The House Monster. All 18.2 pounds of her.

7) Doing laps around the 4th Floor spinal ward of Scripps La Jolla Hospital, and "racing" fellow patients in the process. It was then and there that I knew I would be back before I knew it.

6) Having a lady tell my my pants were too low. I'm assuming that she saw my Extendo Crack, but I wasn't sure. Oh well - if you've seen one butt crack, you've seen them all. Except for mine. My extended one is unlike anything you'll ever see.

5) Doing core work on the Swedish Ball at physical therapy, and rolling off because the ball was slippery. I laughed for 3 minutes until I regained my composure and tried again. My wonderful PT wasn't happy about my antics, and decided to demonstrate himself - only to slip off the ball. Nearly wet my pants in the process.

4) Recieving all the cards, packages, and well wishes from friends, bloggers, and complete strangers. In the midst of a bad day - where I'm frustrated or sad - I'll pull out cards or pictures, and soon I'll smile and realize how grateful I truly am. It's an even better pick-me-up than a shot of whiskey. And it doesn't burn on the way down.

3) No ice baths! No freezing water! No ice bumping against my legs! Need I say more???

2) Trying to "save" some beached rays during the Gulf Coast Half getaway weekend. After sitting in the sand with Mary for half an hour, watching the skates and rays play in the waves, we returned to the room and I glanced out the balcony. To my horror, the rays that I had fallen in love with, had gotten caught up in a crashing wave, and were flopping around on the sand.

Without thinking, I ran down the two flights of stairs and hit the beach. Mary and Ashley yelled that the little critters were okay and back in the water. But I had to see it to believe it.

All I remember is them yelling at me to, "NOT RUN!"

I tore across the sand, not listening to their cries of, "We'll tell your coach! We have her number!"

And sure enough, the rays were okay.

And I got to run across the sand. (My back felt great!)

1) Regaining sensation on the right side of my pelvic region exactly a week after my surgery while walking down Pacific Coast Hwy 101 in Del Mar, California. It was very embarassing, as it felt itchy -for lack of a better word. Nathaniel found it hilarious, and encouraged me to scratch my itch. For the life of me, I was unable to do so.

For Pete's sake - there was stopped traffic and people eating at ousdie cafes. Scratching my pelvic area in public did NOT seem the right thing to do - post surgery or not.

8 weeks. Wow. Still a can't believe it happened - but I am amazed at all the good that has come about since the crash. And it gives me hope, makes me realize that We all have the ability to make something negative and turn it into a positive. Because, after all, we can't change what happens, but we CAN control how we reach, how we choose to respond.

And with a lot of good friends, wonderful family, and a very devoted House Monster, I'm excited and optimistic about what the next 8 weeks have to offer.


rr said...

You're afraid of sharks but ran right up to the rays? Did you not hear about the crocodile hunter??

Congrats on making it through 8 solid weeks of recovery, and doing it with a smile, most of the time. You're an inspiration :) -rach

Alili said...

Spoken like a true champion. One step closer to lacing up your running shoes and inspiring me every step of the way:)

Ashley said...

I MISS YOU TOO! I'd swim in those damn waves every day... if I could be swimming with you, Mary, and the rest of the crew.

Sarah said...

I'm so happy you were able to go and be part of such a fantastic experience. You'll be the one racing before you know it!! :)

Wes said...

I love your blog, Marit (hope I pronounced that properly ;-) I've been checking in from time to time to see how you are doing. You're one of those inspirational peeps, dontcha know? Spectating at a major triathlon is only slightly less wonderful than participating! I blame IM FL 07 for that one! I loved your 8 things. Your recovery is coming along so well. You'll be back out on the road in no time. This I know :-)

BreeWee said...

Marit! I am so sorry you feel a bit down... you are one of the MOST encouraging blog friends I have and one of the most happy-go-lucky women in the world... I think it's okay you had one or a few rough days/moments.

Truly, being a bit sad at the start of your wave only means you care and you love it and you want it! Those are the things that make an athlete GREAT. You will be back at it sooner than later and with those characteristics you will be better than you were before you got messed up.

Your friends sure needed you and you made them all enjoy the trip and race that much more.

Have a GREAT week Marit. Your turn is coming...

Ashley said...

ALRIGHT!!! You are free to ride the pink taco (sorry, inside joke my friends: Marit bought a pink ISM saddle... I had to call it the pink taco) I am so excited for you and your sore muscles. Go go Marit.