Sunday, September 30, 2012



That's my 5k time from this morning. It's a personal record (PR) for me. It's the fastest I've ever run this distance in my whole life- training included. It's the fastest recorded 5k for me by more than 2 minutes.

I just kicked something's ass.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Eye of The...

Life is so busy. Seriously, you guys. Remember when we were bored??  Remember when Stephan and I went for drives to see stuff? And really... remember when I had time for wallowing in angst??

I saw a picture of a hurricane recently and was reminded that at the center of the storm is a calm, peaceful place. It's still a part of the storm- but it's the quiet center. It's the middle.

I have a favorite book. Mr. God, This is Anna was a book my parents bought me because it had my name in the title. I've read it about a dozen times. I often buy copies of it and give it to friends. The little girl in the story once tells the narrator that God lives in her middle. And so does he. And so do all the people she loves in the world. They all live in her middle, and she lives in their middles.

Tonight I asked Sawyer where he feels happy. He pointed to his mouth. Where do you feel sad? Mouth again. Where do you feel angry? In his head. Where do you feel scared? In his belly. Where do you feel love? He pointed to the middle of my chest. My body- right in the middle.

I'm cool with that.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

"Best Photo Ever Taken in the History of People Taking Photos"

I have dear, sweet friends. They are supportive. They are funny. They are kind. Sometimes, they're also complete bitches when I need them to be. One friend had a garage-sale last weekend and dug a shirt out of the pile and made sure it didn't sell. Then she gifted it to me.

The shirt says, "I got a black belt - in crazy."

The shirt is perfect. I love the shirt. I promised her I would wear it every day. And then... I promised I'd wear it to Therapy (I've been banned from using the word "Crazy" because it has negative connotations, I use it too much, and it contributes to my bad habit of labeling myself.... apparently).

The challenge: wear it to Therapy.

Bonus: take a picture of yourself in front of Therapy while wearing the shirt to prove you did it.

Extra life-awesome-ness points:

Get the secretary to take a picture of you AND your therapist while wearing the shirt.

Dear bipolar II,
You will not take my sense of humor away from me.
Check. And Mate.


Monday, September 24, 2012


Sometimes I carb-load 9 weeks before a race.

And this photo is posted purely for bragging purposes. Oh... who's that calling?? Sub-10-minute-miles?? Why, yes! I'll take it!!!!


Warning: Cheesy simile headed your way.

So there are a lot of things changing in my brain lately. Also, we're training for a November 1/2 marathon. It's the start of training, it's the start of a few different mental journeys for me. I had the thought the other day that I'd just like to have a conversation with the person I am about 4 months from now when all of these things have settled down.

It's like... think of a caterpillar, right? They start like ugly worms. (Or pretty worms, I guess it depends on your point of view.) And then they hibernate in their chrysalis, yadda yadda yadda, out pops a beautiful, transformed butterfly.

Here's the thing. When people go through transformations, they usually (unless I'm missing some amazing medspa out there) don't get to cocoon themselves away from the world to take the time to figure it out before coming out the other side. No no. We have to keep going- keep moving. You can't drop your kid off at Preschool in a chrysalis.  You can't call into work, "Yeah, I'm going to need three months off to re-learn how to breathe from my diaphragm and reset my emotions after my mental button has been pressed." And you definitely canNOT tell a cat that's about the puke on your bed, "Listen pussy, a medical professional told me that my #1 priority is getting eight hours of sleep- so let yourself outside to hack up that fur ball."

(Hee hee. I used a bad word.)

This is a tough one. Fold laundry/breathe. Make dinner/accept change. Dress child/observe the sensations in your skin. Walk dogs/learn to let go. Type blog/find inner peace.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Dim Sum


A post about a lot of little things.

Alrighty people. Go getcha selves a cupa tea. This one is gonna be a doozie.

First. Zombies. Several of the Zombie transmissions are recorded under the premis that the person talking has no idea if there's anyone listening. They're talking and letting their ideas out into the universe without knowing if they're being received. Sometimes I feel like that. I type words. I hit "Publish." And then.... I have no idea what happens after that. I know I've picked up a few readers from my activity on the Runner's World Facebook page... and it's possible my family might still have saved the link. But... I don't know. Echo... tap tap... is this thing on?

Second. Scoring a different game. Cancer was a big deal. I was 29. It was Melanoma- the deadliest form of skin cancer. I loved the sun. I actually had a tanning package at the time because it helped me ward off the winter blahs. With one punch-biopsy my life changed. No more sun. Gotta lose weight. Check ups every 3 months, then every 6 months for the next ten years. I wasn't going to take Cancer laying down. I "shut up and put my shoes on." Cancer changed my game, and I rose to meet the challenge.

Third. Acceptance. (Which I realize should have been the first step... but whatever.) The morning I was waiting on the phone call from the doctor about my current Cancer condition I had my game face on. I was ready. I wrote a manifesto about it. It was titled, "If it's Cancer..." The good news: it wasn't Cancer. The bad news... later that day I showed up to an appointment with a psychotherapist. This wasn't my first appointment. I was feeling pretty invincible after getting the good news. I felt great. By the end of our 50-minute hour I walked out of the office with a brand-new diagnosis: bipolar II.

I know, I know. I've heard it all in the last few weeks...
"Aren't all women bipolar?"
"Well, there's something wrong with everyone..."
"This sounds made-up."
"If that's what's wrong with you- I wonder what's wrong with me??"
"Yeah, I knew that. How did you not know that?"
"That's crap. The therapist's kids must need braces."

Regardless of what anyone in the world says, this disease kills 20% of the people who have it. And that number rises with several factors. And many of those factors apply to me. So I can't blow this off. I gotta do bipolar with the same gusto as I would have done Cancer. I can't ignore 20%.

What's the care-plan for bipolar II?
For now, we as a family, are choosing against pharmaceuticals. The therapist told us that this is NOT recommended. This is definitely a different path for this diagnosis. But we're ok with that. Stephan is a medical professional. We really trust our therapist. We're not going into this blindly. At the first sign of the Alternative Medicine failing we're getting back onto the med-train. But for now, this week, we're focusing on three things: Sleep, Eating, Exercise.

I'm supposed to write down how I'm doing in each of those three categories and bring it to my next session. Of course, this is ME we're talking about, so I've already created a 'tool' to measure how I'm doing using numerical values so I can compare them on a spreadsheet over the next few weeks.

So, there you go, Internet (or echo, or whatever). That's what's going on with Anna lately. It does make the, "Just be Anna" directive a little more complicated. "Anna" feels a little under construction at the moment. Stay tuned for updates.

Saturday, September 15, 2012


My friend Kristen recently blogged about setting goals. Specifically how acknowledging goals- writing them down, telling other people- gives them a greater chance of being achieved.

So I've been thinking about it for a while. And here's what I was thinking... In baseball, hitting a ball 3 out of 10 times is a pretty good goal. In school, 80% is passing in most cases. Bowling? Basketball? Black jack? A "good" score changes depending on your perspective. If you've been bowling and you're used to scoring 66% of the time (a really good score!!) and you start playing baseball (where a 30% average will net you millions of dollars) you're going to have to make some mental adjustments.

Well, I'm sure you can see where I'm going with this. Mentally, I need to stop aiming for that 4.0 GPA, and start playing a kinder, gentler sport.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Spreading like Herpes

So by now you guys know I'm addicted to Zombies, RUN! What you might not know is that I should really start getting a commission on this thing. A man came to do an estimate on replacing our windows and I talked so much about Zombies that he downloaded it to his phone before he even left.

With that guy, that makes 4 people in the last month I've pressured into playing the game. Do you play? Share your experience with me in the comments!!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Where We Started...

This week marks the anniversary of SO many things. But my favorite is the anniversary of the first time I took running steps post-foot surgery.

It was only a 2.0 mile run. It took 30 minutes. The average pace was 15 minutes. And, as you can see from the graph above, it started out strong, but quickly faded into a walk.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

When Breakfast is the Deepest Time of the Day

"Today is my birthday!"

"No. It's not."


"Ok, fine. In a universe where all time is happening simultaneously, yes, today is your birthday."

Saturday, September 8, 2012

No Title Yet

I have a song in my head and I just realized I have no idea who sings it, or what the lyrics are. Crazy, no? But I thought it started, "It's 6am and I am not awake...." but Google isn't helping. I also thought it was by Green Day.

I thought the 6am runs would get easier. Not so. It's getting darker (duh) in the mornings, so it's actually a little scarier to leave the house half dressed with earphones in. But it's also getting cooler. I headed out this morning surrounded by 57 glorious degrees of air temperature with a gentle breeze. Yes, in shorts and a tshirt. And I feel amazing. This is why I started running. It's so different to run in fresh air.

So my advice for you today is to go surround yourself with something refreshing. I'm choosing a shower next!!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Fifteen Birds in Five Fir Trees...

Yet another example of my stellar parenting skillz:

"Mom, why don't the goblins come here?"

"Because they are afraid of the dogs."

"And the dogs bark?"

"Yep. When the dogs bark at the goblins they run away."

[dogs start barking like crazy]

"Mom, are the goblins here?"

"No, the dogs scared them away."

"But they came here and the dogs scared them?"

"Yeah, let's think about cakes and the aquarium."


Thursday, September 6, 2012

Little Pieces of Paper

This is a spoiler blog post about Zombies, Run!

Dude!!!!! This is so much cooler than I expected it to be!!! So when you're running you "pick up" items like water bottles, USB keys, sports bras, etc. If you run too slow and a zombie catches up to you, you drop some of the supplies to distract them. Sometimes, you pick up really specialized things. "Artifacts" like an article from a newspaper. Or... A note from Netrophil.



The paper I picked up had an email address on it. I googled the address, found out it was part of the game, and then emailed them.

Dude. I got an email back. With more information about the game. These guys have websites set up, Twitter accounts, and email addresses. I can't WAIT to get to the bottom of this game- and the only way to do that is to RUN!!!

Looking Back

I didn't remember writing this post until I got to the end of it. I love my kid!!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Six "Hey!" M

(get it? Like, 6am, but with "Hey!" instead of A?)

We've undergone a dramatic schedule shift in our household. The net result was that Stephan and I now spend at least 4 hours in the same bed at the same time EVERY NIGHT. It's weird. It's been 3 years since that's happened. He used to work from 7pm - 7am and we were all awake by the time he got home. Now he gets home at 4am, and the whole family is asleep for a few hours.

So what do I do with this new wonderful gift?

I use it to go for early 6am runs. When Sawyer lost his afternoon nap I lost my run. Now I can join those thousands of insane people who wake up in a quiet house and dodge morning rush-hour traffic, school busses, cranky teenagers, and finish off a 4 or 6 before anyone even wakes up.

I'm happy this is working out.

I'm stunned at what 6am feels like to my body.