For the last nine years, I’ve worked in the IT department of the Archdiocese of New Orleans. I’ve been there so long, I just had a boyfriend when I started, and I was in my twenties (barely)! In the time I’ve been there, I got engaged, and married, and had a few kids. I feel like I’ve done a lot of growing up at this job, and my coworkers are the family that have stood beside me the whole way. We lived through Hurricane Katrina and our subsequent displacement. They shared in my shock when I came back to work after my first ultrasound. (And I got to see what it was like from the other side when R came back from the ultrasound where his wife found out she was having identical twins.) The first place the boys had a sleepover was at my boss’s house, so I really do mean it when I say they’re like family.
Which made it hard to tell them I was leaving the nest, for a new job, my dream job. They were happy for me when I told them, which is a testament to what great guys they all are. (I have always been the lone female in the department, and I’m not going to say I didn’t enjoy being queen of the castle all these years!)
But I am heading out, into an amazing opportunity, working for a company whose products I have long loved and championed. I’ll be moving to Automattic, the company behind WordPress.com, for one. I’ll be working as a Happiness Engineer. Great title, huh? It kind of says it all. I will be working with the users of WordPress.com, helping ensure their blogging experience is a positive one. I’ve been doing this on a part-time basis for the past couple of months, and can’t wait to dive in full-time with all of the other amazing Automatticians.
So, as predicted, Miles had some costume regrets after he decided on a Luke Skywalker costume (actually, it’s an Obi-Wan Kenobi costume, but whatever) while his brothers chose to be Power Rangers. I was so delighted that he chose something different, on his own, that I didn’t push him very hard to reconsider, and maybe I should have. Or not, because then I wouldn’t have witnessed this disgustingly sweet moment…
The other morning, they were playing in their costumes, and Oliver and Linus both came up to me in private, separately, to suggest that I tell Miles how cool his costume is. “Don’t tell him we told you to say that.”
A little while later, after I effusively complimented Miles’s outfit, I heard his brothers say, “Woah, Miles, that costume is SO COOL. It is WAY cooler than ours. Woah.”
And then I melted into a puddle of goo, the end.
My eleventh half-marathon. Why do I continue to do these? I don’t even really like them. I probably say this after every race, but I’m sticking to 5ks from now on.
Anyway, for the week prior to the race, I knew the weather was not going to be ideal for a half-marathon. Ideal for a picnic or a birthday party at the park, but not for running. Not for me. I need cool, cloudy weather. Which is the opposite of what we got.
My plan was to run with my friend Heather, who is ten years younger and probably fifty pounds lighter than me. You see where this is going? We did a 2:1 run:walk and in spite of the weather (I mean, it wasn’t that bad, it was in the 70s) I felt pretty good. We were averaging about 12 minute miles, which was fine, whatever.
About a mile after this picture, when we were in the Audubon Park portion of the race, the timer beeped to run again, and I just told Heather to go on without me. She said later I looked very pale. I didn’t even feel all that bad, but I just knew I wasn’t going to be able to keep going at that pace for another five miles. So she went on ahead (and ran the rest of the way, so I’m glad I didn’t hold her back) and I contemplated having George come get me. But then I decided I would just keep going, and see how it went.
So that’s basically it. I just kept going. I ran some, I walked some. I ate some jelly beans, which I guess helped. I mean, I didn’t die or anything. Ha.
And then I finished. In, shockingly, not my worst time ever. 2:53. And in looking at my history, it’s faster than my first, eleven years ago, that I did when I was training for the London Marathon. So that makes me feel a tiny bit better.
George and the boys watched me finish, which was great, and I got a rare photo with my boys. And Millie. And Heather’s boyfriend.
One positive note was that I was not really sore Sunday or today. I am guessing that means I was pretty well trained, legs-wise, just not heat-wise. Although my legs felt really really tired at about mile 12, I definitely still had some life in them. I was just overheated. But still. No more half-marathons. Unless they’re in Alaska or somewhere that’s guaranteed to be cold. Hmmph.
As for the race itself, I was disappointed in a few things. Well, kinda. I was disappointed there were no timing mats on the course. That just seems weird. I really would like to know what my time at the halfway point was, before I lost my shit. And There were no photographers out on the course, but that was more of a relief than anything. Just an observation. But at least there were plenty of water stations, and whatever they were giving out as a sports drink was totally delicious. Yum.
One funny thing happened at the end, a woman came up to me who recognized my sparkly skirt and the boys, because she had read my review of last year’s race the day before. Love that!
Friday: Picnic at school, complete with a maze for the kids that I got lost in. Hmm.
Saturday: Heather and I went to pick up our race packets for the half-marathon on the 12th. And then we went to Costco! The new one! It was terribly exciting. Gas was under $3 a gallon! And I was ridiculously excited about the giant boxes of Oatmeal Squares cereal for $5.
I did some product photography for a catalog, and while I had my backdrop set up, the boys had a little photoshoot, at George’s request. That’s his shirt and toy (and I’ll freely admit I photoshopped them together in this picture.)
The fire hydrants on our street were open (yay for no water pressure) so George went to show the boys, and they all basically ended up soaked. Woo hoo, free bath! Regretfully, I didn’t have my camera with me.
After that, I went to the gym and ran 10 miles on the treadmill. Two hours on a treadmill is more about mental stamina than physical, I think. Glad I did it, but I just pray it’s cool on Saturday morning for the race.
Later, I took the boys to see Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2. I have a friend who worked on the first one, so I feel kind of disloyal saying this, but we loved it! Of course it wasn’t as good as the first, but it was definitely entertaining. We decided if Oliver was a foodimal, he’d be, um, and olive, and Miles would be Marshmiles, but we haven’t figured out Linus. Something with limes? Not sure. Any ideas?
This morning was a bit nuts with Linus being sick (he had weird croupy cough Saturday night, but no other symptoms, and still doesn’t, but we thought it best if he stayed home today) and therefore that made me forget the other boys’ lunches, so today they’re getting a ridiculously expensive lunch from Whole Foods that they’re probably not even going to eat. Sigh.
Ah, how naive I once was, thinking as the boys got older, the monthly pictures would get easier. For a time, I guess it did. But now…not so much. I can’t rely on yelling “POOP!” anymore to make them laugh. Even an M&M bribe only got me this. Sigh. I gotta up my game.