Two great things happened in the last few days that I want to share with you. The first is super awesome, and super important. The second is just frivolously fun. Let’s start with the first, since that makes the most sense, shall we?
I visited my mom on Thursday. She is doing really well. She had her 5th chemo, and looked awesome. She was wearing her fun “punk” wig (it was previously pretty punk, but the wig guy tamed it a bit). Her spirits were pretty high, and she seemed really energetic. She was telling me that she really hadn’t realized how sick she had been through the first month of her illness.
“Thankfully”, she said, “our bodies don’t really remember pain”.
“Thank God”, I said, “or no one would ever have multiple children!”
She told me of the stories she’s been hearing from the other folks receiving chemo when she’s their. “They sound so miserable,” she said. “It seems like I feel so much better than they do.”
It’s amazing to me. And apparently, it’s amazing to her doctors and nurses. They are so happy with her progress, and they shower her with hugs and compliments every time she goes.
She has one more round of chemo to go, and then she’s done! Woohoo! After that, she will begin the process of having a mastectomy. Shortly after she was diagnosed, the mastectomy was taken off the table. She was too sick. After a few weeks, the topic was reintroduced. Now we have tentative dates. She’s made such improvement! Yay for science!
I have to share a fun picture of her too! She went to her wig guy and told him that she never actually went fully gray before losing her hair, and she wanted to see what she would have looked like. He gave her a gray wig to try on, just long enough to take a picture. She looks like a totally different person!
After visiting mom, I packed up on Friday and headed to visit some friends in Maryland. My friend and I stayed with them on our way to run the VHTRC Women’s Half Marathon in Fairfax Station, VA.
This race is awesome. It’s for women only, and just about all of the volunteers are men. It’s cool. This was my second entry into the race, and I was very excited. I ran it in 2011 in 2:31:46, and my goal for this race was to break 2:30. I have PR’d in every race I’ve run in the last 12 months, so I had reason to believe that I could do this. I had a weird night and morning before the race, though, so I was a little worried. (I nearly passed out in my friend’s kitchen after dinner, though thankfully no one noticed. Then I was a little dizzy this morning before and during the race. I’ve had a bit of a headache the rest of the day. Something has been a little off, but I’m not sure what. I’m monitoring it, but don’t think it’s anything to worry about.)
The first 3/4 mile is on asphalt through the parking lot and road into the park. It lets the runners spread out, which is super helpful. It sucks to get stuck behind a group of runners that are slower than you when you are on single-track trails. The rest of the race is on well-used trails. People were saying that there were “lots” of roots and “big” hills. Based on the trails we have available to us around here, I disagree completely. I thought it was a very smooth trail for much of the race, and that they hills weren’t too bad at all. There were only a few times that I hiked a bit, and it was always just for a few seconds. Here’s the elevation profile of the race:
I muscled up that hill just after mile 11, but thought I was further along than I was. I was disappointed to get to the top and realize there was more than a mile left. I had believed it to be the last hill. Oops! Whatever.
Since the weather was absolutely perfect, heat and humidity were not a factor. This was pretty much as perfect as a race gets. I have zero complaints. The volunteers were awesome, the runners were great, the weather was amazing, and the course was beautiful.
Oh! And I PR’d by 14 minutes! My time this year was 2:17:35, so I took more than 14 minutes off of my previous time. Yay! I was 54th out of 218 runners (top 25%) and was 13th out of 43 (top 30%) of my super-competitive age group. (The first and third place overall finishers were from my age group.)
I hope you had some great things happen in your life in the last week. If so, congratulations! If not, I’m sending you good vibes, and hoping something great is coming your way.