Jun 192017
 

I don’t have much to say this morning. Got home from Battle Ropes and made myself a big cup of Keto Proof coffee. Feeling pretty energetic considering I only got about 4.5 hours of sleep and there were way fewer rest intervals in class today. My husband isn’t awake yet so I’m tiptoeing around the apartment, waiting…

I just wanted to take a moment and document how great I feel. Getting up and going to class this morning was not a smooth process. Something about getting up at 4:30 am when I don’t have to work seems ludicrous. I did it though!

 Posted by at 7:04 am
May 142014
 

A quick recap of what’s happened since I last posted:

  • In January I fell and broke my leg/ankle in 3 places.
  • I was off work for 7 weeks and am still not up to full strength.
  • My sister and her two kids lived with me for 2 months which means I have a phone full of adorable pictures.
  • I moved to Ohio at the end of April and am now living with my boyfriend and our pets.
  • In June I start my new job at a teaching hospital in Cincinnati.

Life has been busy and full of change lately. I am doing my best to keep up and want to start writing again. There are definitely a few experiences I want to blog about and I know as things fall in to place here in Ohio I will have lots more to talk about. Unlike in November when I said I was going to start posting again soon this time I really mean it.

 

 Posted by at 9:33 am
Jun 302013
 

The sun is beating down on the Southwest region of the United States, something you may already know if you watch/read the news. What you won’t hear a lot about is the heat we are experiencing in the Pacific Northwest, which is accompanied by an unusual 100% humidity. The normal summer temperature here is 72 to 73 degrees (62-65 in town) with low humidity. Today town hit 81 and where I live hit 92. Throw in a high pollen level and having to sleep in a sun-room during the day…

I haven’t been sleeping. Not sleeping, pollen, and humidity all trigger my asthma. Struggling to breath makes me tired. I skip working out when I’m tired. When I don’t work out I stress out about not working out. There is enough going on in my life that I don’t need to stress about anything else right now!

Work has been busy, I worked 95 hours in two weeks, and was scheduled to work 107. When I got off this morning I begged a coworker to take my shift tonight and went to my Mom’s to sleep. She doesn’t live far from me so it was already 90 degrees when I got there, but she has more fans and not as many windows (I have south, east, and north facing windows – it’s more a steam room than a sun-room at the moment)… so I crawled in to bed and actually got 8 solid hours of sleep today.

Then I got up and worked out. I ran 1 mile and walked 1 mile. It felt great to be working out for the first time in NINE days. Sleeping, working out, and not working are making me feel better already. My asthma is still touchy, but hopefully I will be able to sleep at night until this heat wave passes.

 Posted by at 6:01 am
Jun 052013
 


I was doing great until I hit 1 mile, I ran the entire downhill portion of the road and was having very little problem finishing my 30 seconds of running. Then the dizziness set in and I couldn’t move without feeling like I was going to pitch forward. I paused my app and rested against the side rail of the bridge for five minutes.

Feeling a little better I took off at a walk… And fell flat on my face. To dizzy to be anything but desperate to go home I gave in and called my Mom. Then I very slowly made my way back to the railing.

I was a little over a mile from home and I couldn’t even walk the rest of the way. Furious at myself doesn’t even cover it. I was crying by the time my parents showed up and nearly fell getting in the van and could barely shut the door.

I’m home now and sitting down. Still dizzy. Still mad. Not crying. I have some theories about why I was fine Monday and awful today. Time will let me know if they are true.

In happy news I was able to switch myself over to night shift today. I stayed up until about 5:30am working on an armband to wear on my runs. I found the pattern at Cult of Crochet.

Mine came out a little different because I couldn’t find my yarn needle, but it is actually quite comfortable and stays in place!

 


I would have bought one but I have rather large upper arms and didn’t want to have to return something because it wasn’t wide enough around.

This was the perfect solution because I was able to adapt the pockets to fit my iPhone (I have a boxy case) and make a second pocket big enough for my inhaler and id. If you’re crafty and looking for an armband I highly suggest making your own!

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

 Posted by at 4:37 am
May 272013
 

2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)
9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

The three days I spent in the hospital were a God send. The new anti-depressant I started several weeks ago threw me for a loop. The harder I tried to hold on the deeper I fell. As much as I pretended to have it all together, that I had hope, that things were getting better….

I wasn’t safe to be alone. My parents were at their wits end trying to help, and when I went to the doctor on Wednesday I wasn’t able to hide behind smiles…

So in to the hospital I went. You see all the commercials for anti-depressants and it talks about how it can increase certain feelings in children and teenagers…. Well, if you’re bipolar it can do the same thing!

Yeah, so I am bipolar. Found that out while at the hospital. I spent a lot of time with doctors, nurses, and mental health professionals who all came to the same conclusion. Especially considering my diagnosis of ADHD as a child.

Turns out that a lot of people my age who were diagnosed with ADHD as kids were really early on-set bipolar. The periods of hyperactivity were maniac periods… And since I have struggled with depression for as long as I can remember…. The result was logical.

This makes sense since behavior therapy and sticking to a schedule was always more effective for me than the ADHD meds. I actually spent 12 days in the hospital when I was 11 for almost exactly the same reasons I did this past week.

An inventory of my adult years led to a stunning conclusion… Every time I hit a maniac period in the past I’ve moved, quit my job, started school, ended/started relationships, invested in a new hobby… Another words I always ran away and lost myself in something so I didn’t have to address what was going on in my head.

This time I had no way to run. I can’t quit my job, I’m not ready to go to school, and the idea of a new hobby when I have so many already was overwhelming. I was sleeping for days at a time. Or staying up for 48 hours straight. It took hours to fall asleep, and I’d spend hours cleaning and then the next week the dishes would sit in the sink until the house stunk.

It was everything or nothing. I’d find the middle of the road for a little bit and revel in it. This pattern has been going on for most of my life but the past 6 weeks or so have been hellacious.

The anti-depressant intensified everything and I finally crashed. At first I was strung out about inpatient treatment. The staff at the hospital was amazing! Every day I was reassured about my confidentiality, I was able to skip the typical admitting process and was actually hidden on the patient census. The people who took care of me are people I have worked with and at first that terrified me.

It shouldn’t have. God went above and beyond. His timing is perfect. I was treated like a normal person who needed help. I didn’t get special treatment (still had to hand over my phone and anything dangerous to myself or others) from the staff who knew me, but they did talk to me like a colleague when they could.

It was nice because they know what sort of stress I am under at work and we addressed some of the best ways to handle that stress. I learned lots of different coping strategies and ways to identify triggers and when I am starting to swerve out of the lines.

I’m off the anti-depressant and on mood stabilizers. I took some heavy duty sleep aides for a few days too, but am off the benzodiazepines now. Hopefully I will be able to go off 2 out of my 3 mood stabilizers in the future. One of the good things that came out of inpatient treatment was a being able to take a closer look at my other medications.

It looks like I might be able to go off my blood pressure medication and metformin soon, if the mood stabilizers don’t cause anything to act up. Yay!

Back to resting in Christ… I am weak. Unbearably, hopelessly, desperately weak. There is a chance someone from work may find out about me being bipolar. That bothers me a little bit, but I am placing my trust in Him, because that is the only way I am strong.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

 Posted by at 7:48 pm
May 182013
 

I opened up to friends today about how bad things have been mentally in the past few months. While getting that off my chest was refreshing, it left me feeling a lot more vulnerable. It’s hard to find balance on how much is too much when it comes to being completely honest. Thank God I have some amazing friends, and a wonderful family! Even though I felt bare afterwards, it was nice to clue these women who mean so much to me in to what is going on.

My life right now is different than I imagined. I drive a decent car, live in a pretty (albeit small) house, and manage to keep my bills paid and generally have a smidgen left over for a movie or a book every few paydays. I don’t need much, and generally don’t find myself lusting for material things. I have a support system that many people dream of, and I am on my way to a healthier me.

And I still find myself spiraling down deeper in to depression. Which makes me feel guilty. And then comes more depression. It’s a vicious cycle. Occasionally I break free, but never for very long. Sometimes I spiral up, so far up that I lose control and find myself slamming back so hard that it undoes everything I’ve previously achieved.

How do you tell people that even though you’re happy, you are depressed? I feel like such a whiner when I say that. When someone asks me how I am I smile and say it’s OK. It reminds me of when my Dad died, and very few people really wanted to hear “it sucks, I cry all the time and when I do manage to smile, it hurts”… I know from experience that grief gets better. That gives me that depression will too.

Dad has been gone 7 years at the end of this month. How vastly I’ve changed in those 7 years. I’m a grown up now. I know he would be is proud of everything I’ve accomplished and the woman I am. I do not miss him less now, but I don’t wallow in grief either. His absence has simply become a part of who I am. Some days I wonder if I’d be who I am now if he hadn’t of died. Scratch that, I KNOW I would be different. Part of my success is fueled by a pledge to honor his memory and live a full life.

When I was little my Dad lost a lot of weight by running. He went on to join the Navy, and then left to become a pastor. The pounds came back and by the time I was a teenager he was morbidly obese. When he learned he was a Type 2 diabetic everything changed. He started eating right, walking, and doing his best to honor the body God gave him to take care of. (My Dad fought a lifelong battle with depression as well, he was someone I could always talk to because he got it.)

When I lace up my running shoes I am promising to do everything in my power to live long enough to meet my grandchildren. 4 years now a miniature version of my Dad has been roaming the earth, changing my families life forever. Sometimes I look at my nephew and stare, because it is like looking at my Dad. I dream about what it would be like to see them side by side, laughing and playing with each.

I want to be there when my (someday) kids have kids. So I am going to conquer the darkness and run in the light. It’s funny how much peace training for this 10k has brought in to my life. Just 6 weeks of getting out and doing my best has given me a new reason to go on. The depression is still there. Some days it is still crippling. It won’t always be.

Tonight I had a too few many cookies and treats at a potluck. At first I couldn’t understand why I kept eating! Then I sat down and started to write and realized I was pushing food in to my mouth to give my brain something else to think about. Processing it and moving on is a much better solution.

So I am going to go home after work, sleep, and go out and get a few miles in before getting ready for another long night. And then it’s the weekend! Hallefreakinglujah. My goal for this weekend is to go for a 6.2 mile walk. No running or jogging allowed, I just want to get out and walk a 10k. I will let you know how it goes.

 Posted by at 7:59 am
May 152013
 

Welcome to my new readers, those of you who came over from Runs for Cookies and commented are much appreciated. This blog hasn’t been active for very long, and I don’t expect it to ever have a large readership, but I do enjoy getting comments. So thanks!

At my appointment on Monday I talked to my PA about the soreness in my right leg. This leg is my ‘bad’ leg and was a concern I had before I took up 10k training. In mid 2011 I fell with my entire weight on the outside of my lower leg. The bruise was awful, I wish I still had a picture. It extended from my knee all the way down to my ankle and was nearly black for months. The swelling was so bad I couldn’t crouch, or get down on my hands and knees without my entire leg feeling like it was on fire and about to explode. When I first fell I couldn’t even feel my foot.

At first they thought I might have had compression syndrome, and then they thought I had a clot, luckily neither of those turned out to be an issue. It did turn out that I had a rather large hematoma in the calf and it took weeks for it to actually stop bleeding. I took it as easy as possible, but was only able to get a week off work to keep it iced and elevated. Making the issue worse was the fact that my sister, her 2 year old, and 3 month old were living with me at the time. I tried to get back to normal life but my leg still bothered me, it didn’t feel the same. I begged my NP at the time for physical therapy, but was given a prescription for pain medicine instead.

The pain medicine was awful, and after a few months I quit taking it all together and asked for therapy again, only to be told no. My NP actually dismissed me because I refused to take the medication she prescribed. Ugh! Luckily my next NP was amazing (and moved soon after I switched to her, grr), and quickly referred me to an orthopedic (almost a year after the injury). He took did a bunch on xrays and then spent an hour manipulating my leg. Turns out I had bursitis in the greater trochanter, a compressed sciatic nerve, and a cyst in my upper calf (which will never go away, it’s left over from the hematoma). Luckily I didn’t have to have surgery (anesthesia is a phobia of mine), but I did have fluid pulled out of the bursa, and received a cortisone shot. The worst part was he said most of the issues could have been avoided if I’d done physical therapy!

The shot was the worst thing I ever did. It took me almost 6 months to realize that although the pain was gone, my control that muscles on my right hip was decreased. The relief from the cortisone has worn off and now I am stuck with a leg that doesn’t always do what I want. So it came as no surprise to me when the pain increased after a few weeks of training to run a 10k. My new PA is an amazing athlete, and in addition to her medical training, she is also a certified trainer and marathon runner. Lucky me : ) The moment I described the issue she was able to pinpoint the problem and showed me several stretches to do before and after running (or any activity) to help with the piriformis and other muscles in that region. I did them today and was able to go about 2/3rds of my run without any issues.

Once I got to work I printed off some more information and tons of stretches. Hopefully as I lose weight and gain strength the pain will decrease. Even if it doesn’t I am not going to give up running. It’s the first exercise other than Zumba that I have truly enjoyed.

 Posted by at 4:07 am
May 142013
 

As soon as the sunshine hits I spend as much time as possible in the water. For Mother’s Day I went to my parents house, we had a small lunch and were trying to decide what movie to watch when the sun broke through the clouds. The forecast had called for mid 60s and rain, but we ended up in the 70s with sunshine so we loaded my car with a picnic and blankets and headed off for the river.

I absconded with my Step-Dad’s hat.

My Step-dad drove the motorcycle (which means I got to steal his hat) so it was just Mom and I on the 40 minute drive. We had lots of time to talk and spent a lot of it talking about my Dad, who has been gone for 7 years at the end of the month.

The motorcycle and my car hanging out.

Each time we go I get in a little faster. The water is still on the cool side right now (and honestly, it never gets truly warm in this part of Oregon) so it takes a few minutes to get numb. As soon as the water hit my waist I just sat down and soaked myself head to toe.

The River.

We swam, ate, relaxed on the blankets, read, collected rocks for my project, and enjoyed having the water to ourselves. After a few hours we headed home. I had to pull over about a third of the way and let Mom drive.

Scenery

The roads are incredibly windy and not in the best shape, and this was actually my first time driving them in the years we’ve been going. I was tired (had been up since 8pm the night before) and just couldn’t focus on the road anymore. Luckily my Mom loves to drive my car.

Mom and me.

Once we got back to their house we stretched out to watch a movie and I slept through the whole thing. All in all I think I slept 5 hours on their couch. It’s a good thing I spoiled Mom with flowers, a plant, cookies, an beautiful card. Hopefully that made up for my snoring.

Monday I had a doctors appointment and errands to run, so I headed in to town early. I found some great produce sales, so I will definitely be juicing this week! Seed wise I bought habanero, jalapeño, mixed hot peppers, mixed mesclun, Swiss chard, spinach, and collard greens.

My doctors appointment went well. We are going to give my new med 3 more months and reevaluate. So I don’t have to go back for 3 months! Between my asthma and depression I have been at the doctors office nearly every 6 weeks this year.

My weight was down 3lbs from my last visit, but still up from my lowest weight this year. My doctor is actually a PA and she just happens to be a personal trainer and coach too… So she showed me a few stretches to do before and after running and provided lots of encouragement.

I came home and planted my seeds, then set to cleaning house and getting ready for the work week. For tomorrow I have scrambled Mexican eggs & potatoes, half a blueberry oatmeal smoothie, sliced veggies and fruit, and a salad.

I started using My Fitness Pal to track calories and activity this weekend and hope it helps keep me accountable!

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

 Posted by at 7:35 am
May 142013
 

Green smoothies, it’s what’s for dinner.

I am a smoothie and juice drinker. My Ninja blender and juicer have a place of honor on my only countertop because they get used almost every day.

Cooking dinner tonight sounded like torture, so I threw some yummy stuff in the Ninja and drank away. This smoothie is sweet, filling, and packed with greens!

‘Green’ Smoothie

1/2 cup old fashioned oatmeal
1/2 cup almond milk
1/2 cup frozen blueberries
1 frozen banana
2 cups spinach
1 tablespoon honey

I blended the oatmeal first, then added the spinach and milk, blended again, and lastly I blended in the frozen fruit and honey.

This made two large smoothies, perfect if you want to share with someone.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

 Posted by at 2:09 am
May 122013
 

I have slowly opened up to people around me about my ongoing struggle with depression. It seems like the more I acknowledge its existence, the less of a hold it has over me.

Friday morning I was at the peak of a huge high. It had been slowly intensifying over a week or so and I knew the upcoming crash was going to hurt. Luckily I was able to rearrange my schedule last minute so I had Friday night off.

Something I’ve learned recently is how to anticipate my crashes and do everything I can to avoid them interfering with my work. When I clocked out Friday morning I was feeling good. Even though I knew things weren’t going to last I was determined to savor what was left.

After dropping flowers off at work for my Mom (happy nurses week by the way!) I headed to the bank to cash my check. Ever since injuring my ankle last week I knew I needed real running shoes. Since I’m prone to clumsiness anyway, it seemed like I was just setting myself up for a world of hurt if I didn’t invest in the correct gear for my newfound passion.

So I had budgeted out money for some fancy new kicks. I ran to the store for new workout pants and socks, and then went to the only shoe shop in town that caters to people needing speciality shoes for work/hiking/ect.

I’d been to this place earlier in the week and had a great experience with a woman clerk. She fit me (just for size – not gait/running style) and set aside the shoes for me to pick up after I got paid. I spent all week fantasizing about these shoes.

The reviews I read online were great, and the online fit guides all pointed me to this shoe as well. They were expensive though. $110 is a ton of money to me. Money I could have used for a lot of other things.

Unfortunately the lady who had helped me earlier in the week was not at the store. I was helped by the store owner who told me I am too heavy to run, and while he knew it wasn’t his place, he was sure I would injure myself.

CRASH. All the joy I had about this purchase gone in an instant. I paid for the shoes and left, already crying. It took me hours to actually put them on. I posted to Facebook about my experience and received an overwhelming amount of support.

I stumbled through the rest of the day, trying to do things that would postpone the low that always follows a high. I shopped. Walked. Talked. Went to the beach and the farmers market.

Bandon

And went off the deep end as soon as I got home.

I binged like crazy. I’d sleep, eat, read, wake up and eat, then sleep again. After 24 hours of this behavior I was shaking. Everything looked hazy. I couldn’t focus. I wanted to die. I felt so worthless.

I turned my phone back on and went back and read all the supportive things people had said on my post. I prayed for healing. Slowly I am cleaning up after the mess I made of my house. I showered and put on clean clothes. I’m making healthy cookies for Mothers Day.

Brooks Addiction 10

When the sun comes up I am going to put on my shoes and run. That man is wrong. With God (and the wonderful people He has put in my life) on my side I can do ANYTHING.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone
 Posted by at 9:29 am