Thursday, August 14, 2014


I don't talk much about my first half marathon experience.  When I do, typically all I share is that how 2 miles from the finish line I promised myself that I would N-E-V-E-R do something like a half marathon again.  At that time it was a one time shot - at least as far as I was concerned.  (FYI - My third half marathon takes place in September... You see how well that promise held?!)

The one thing I never really talk about is the moments leading up to the finish line. As I turned the corner and saw the ever so beautiful word "FINISH" come into view the song, Stronger (What Doesn't Kill You) by Kelly Clarkson started to play.  I couldn't have thought of a better song to be listening to when I crossed that finish line as it embodied how I felt about several things in life at that moment in time.

The Chicago Marathon is less than 60 days away.  I'm not feeling very confident right now about my abilities at the moment, but when I look back on the first couple of 5K races I did back in 2011/2012 I recall that I didn't feel good about those either.  Not only did I survived them, but also thrived as time went on. That's when I feel better and regain the confidence needed to tackle the task at hand.

In the few months I've been training I've changed - and I'm not just talking physically changed.  There has been an emotional and mental change in me as well.  The things is that the marathon training isn't the only hard "training" I've been tackling this summer... or for that matter this year.  There are other personal and professional boot camp like endeavors I've taken on that have/are transforming me.  Transforming me for the better (at least that is what I believe).

I meant what I said in the letter to myself that posted a few weeks ago.  I am excited to meet myself on October 12, 2014.  No matter what the outcome is in terms of making it to the start line of the Chicago Marathon or what happens during the race, I know that I will have already achieved so much more than I had ever dreamed possible.

What doesn't kill you makes you stronger?....  From my experience, SO TRUE!

Now that I've talked about my thoughts on the topic Denise gave us for this week's Thursday Blog Project - What doesn't kill you makes you strong - please take a moment to see what my fellow bloggers have to say:

Momarock (Sara)

Merryland Girl (Melissa)

Darwin Shrugged (Denise)

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

It will always be "Our House"

Recently, I visited with my middle brother and sister-in-law's at the home they've lived in about 39 years.  Originally, the visit was only suppose to be brunch, but we kept on chatting and chatting that brunch eventually turned into dinner.

At one point during the day, we went into the living/dining room area.  At the time this room was vacant as they were getting their sofa recovered.  With the absense of a sofa the room, which is rather large to begin with, seemed gigantic and echoed - a lot!  At one point we got to talking about how they found the place and all the pieces of the purchase just fell into place.  This led to me saying that since I basically grew up their it felt like my house as well. (Now let me mention that A squared are about 30 years older than me, so it is a very plausible statement that that I could have grown up their - which I did.)

Not only do I have countless memories of family dinners at this home, but also I lived in this house for several months when I moved back to IL after a 2 year stint in Portland, OR.  Each and every time I enter their home I look fondly at the foyer and remember when my brother and I ended up sitting on the floor talking about everything under the sun.  Or, how about the times I sat in the kitchen with my sister-in-law while she tutored me - in what subject I cannot recall.  My niece and I would put CDs on in the living/dining room and lip-sync to them.... "I'm so excited!  And I just can't hide it!"

I'm not the only person who lived at this house.  My brothers J and R did as well, at separate times.  We've laughed and cried.  We sat shiva for my dad almost 25 years ago in this home.  There was a time it wasn't safe to go into the basement of the place, but eventually was because they decided to finish it.  I even smile when I recall the ex telling us the basement ceiling was too low.  For someone his height, indeed; however, for us shorties not at all.

As we reminisced, the stark reality that they'd one day be selling this home was the purple and pink polk-a-dotted suede elephant in the room.  No one wanted to acknowledge it.  At least not until I brought up the subject.  Then the sad reality came to light.  My brother and sister-in-law are aging and one day they may no longer be able to live in such a place.  I wanted to cry, but I didn't.  Instead, my mind raced with how would we avoid having to give up "our house."

So, as I left that day I did so with an understanding that the days of "our house" being "ours" were fewer than I'd like to admit.  However, regardless of what happens in the future, it will always be "our house" even if my brother and sister-in-law no longer own it.

Now that I've shared my thoughts on the topic of "Family" which  I chose for the Thursday Blog Project for August 7th, please take a moment to see what my fellow bloggers have to say:

Momarock (Sara)

Merryland Girl (Melissa)

Darwin Shrugged (Denise)