On Friday our pediatrician semi-apologetically diagnosed Dylan with erupting molars, a chest cold, roseola, and a double ear infection, and that was BEFORE he developed the shriekingly painful diaper rash. As you can imagine, it hasn’t really been the most peaceful of weekends—more like 48 consecutive hours under enemy fire. Yesterday afternoon after a bout of coughing had kept Dylan from napping and his difficulty level skyrocketed to Advanced: Do Not Attempt Without Benzodiazepines, I had myself a little hysterical weeping fit on JB’s shoulder, whimpering this is all too hard and I feel like I’m in prison and if I have to clean up one more cry-cough-barf I am going to go slap out of my fucking mind.

It’s so easy to spiral straight down the rabbit hole when the going gets a little tough, isn’t it? Or maybe it’s just me. A few bad days in a row and I’m like, DEAR GOD THIS HELLISH EXISTENCE CAN NOT BE SURVIVED.

Today was a vast improvement. Dylan seems to be on the mend, for one thing. For another, I got up this morning and ran the first 5K I’ve done in eleven years, which is to say I ran farther without stopping than I have in, let’s see, eleven years. I finished 578th out of 938 runners/walkers in 33 minutes 15 seconds, and about fifty people pushing strollers containing children absolutely left me in the dust while turtles and glaciers slid by waving cheerily, but who cares? I RAN A DAMN 5K.

Also, this afternoon JB and I did something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time: we bought bikes. I went for a ride this evening and it was absolutely glorious. The breeze in my hair, smelling trees and flowers, exploring new neighborhoods, listening to everything outside instead of plugging myself into earbuds. It made me feel like a new part of the world. Like a streamlined version of myself, all the baggage and bullshit left behind.

Such a perfectly fractal weekend, really. A moment is like an hour which is like a day which is like a month. You could chart it in dizzying, jagged lines. Here is the lowest point, where I cry and whine and feel as though my tank is on empty. Here is the high point: where I cross a finish line in sped-up-just-for-the-end steps, gasping. Here: the boys playing together in the backyard. Here: houses flying by and the feeling of speed. And so it goes.

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Jennifer
Jennifer
12 years ago

SO EXCITED FOR YOUR BIKE PURCHASE! I hope you come to love cycling as insanely and zealously as I do. You’re starting out with the right attitude!

Melissa
12 years ago

My son’s cutting 8 teeth at once. Friggin 8! And he’s been diagnosed with double ear infection/chest/strep (well, we both have strep) and he’s been prescribed nebulizer treatments every two hours. Did I mention he’s 13 mo? This morning I thought I might just be losing the will to live. Tonight I’m almost sure of it. BTW, duck shaped face masks don’t make a 1 yr old more excited to wear them.

Katherine
12 years ago

Congrats on running the 5K. I plan on doing that (some distant day in the future.) We also plan on buying bikes. Just as soon as we have the house to store them in.

JMH
JMH
12 years ago

1) Yea for you on your 5k!! Great time too!
2) My hubby and I just bought bikes too…SO MUCH FUN! I feel so free on it..like when I rode my bike in grade school.

Cookie
12 years ago

Congrats on the 5K! I think your time sounds great. Hopefully this encourages you to do more :)

Glad you’re happy with your bike. Seattle area is such a nice place to go riding. I remember doing it quite frequently growing up there. I miss it (bike riding and Seattle).

Sorry to hear about Dylan. Sick children are no fun. Nick just had a single ear infection and a new tooth coming in and that was miserable enough last week. Glad to hear he is doing better.

Elizabeth
12 years ago

I too have had those weekends where my moods changed so fast and frequently that you would swear I was Bi-Polar.

As always, adorable pictures. And is it just me or is Riley seeming less suspicious lately??

PattM
PattM
12 years ago

Well done on the 5k! It is amazing what the feeling of accomplishment does your one’s well being! I felt the same way after my first 1/2 marathon: recharged and ready to take on my life again. I’ve been a mom for almost 24 years and have just learned you have to take care of yourself….it’s tough and everyone has a different way of working it out. Looking forward to seeing more road races and biking!

danielle
danielle
12 years ago

Congratulations for running the 5K and surviving the weekend!

warcrygirl
12 years ago

Oooo, nice bikes! Which reminds me…I have a flat I need to fix. Better get out and ride mine before it gets too hot.

Eric's Mommy
Eric's Mommy
12 years ago

Love the new bikes! I have not ridden my bike in years but I used to love it.

Maria
12 years ago

Congrats on your run!

I know what you mean about having those moments where you feel like you just can’t take anymore crying/whining/bodily fluids. Sometimes I feel like I’ve hit that low more times than I should. But that moment of allowing yourself to have a good little cry is an important part of it. I think it helps you get it out so you can face the inevitable more. I’m glad your weekend had a nice balance.

Kate
12 years ago

Congrats on the 5K, what an awesome accomplishment! Glad to hear Dylan is on the mend.

bessie.viola
12 years ago

I LOVE riding my bike. I really need to get a new one and take it up again.

Glad that Dylan’s feeling better!

Courtney
12 years ago

Nice bikes! I’ve gotten into going for bike rides as exercise rather than running because, well, you can coast and still be moving towards home on a bike (Lazy, I know). Remember to get a helmet! I once saw my dad go head first over the handlebars on a paved (rather innocuous looking) street and SPLIT HIS HELMET in HALF! Scary! Gotta wear a lid!

Danell
Danell
12 years ago

I thought of you the other night when I was up with my eleven-week-old for the fourth time…I was having one of those “I can’t do this-I haven’t gotten more than two consecutive hours of sleep since I was five months pregnant-I am constantly angry and hateful-I just want to SLEEP GODDAMNIT” moments. And I remembered you writing an entry describing a similar feeling. Then I remembered that entry was in March and Dylan was OVER A YEAR OLD…and then I killed myself-the end.

samantha jo campen
12 years ago

Poor little Dylan chicken. I’m glad he’s on the mend.

I totally hear you about the mini-breakdown. You need to have them now and again to get through.

Congrats on the bikes! AND THE 5K!!!

aimee
12 years ago

One thing about motherhood (parenthood?) that amazes me is how the bad times seem like they will be forever and then the good times seem like they will be forever, too. In reality, neither are forever but things seem to come out on the positive side! Congrats on that 5K!!!

kalisa
12 years ago

my son used to get diaper rashes that would bleed. My Jewish MIL told me to use straight corn starch out of the yellow box on it & it totally worked.

Wish I had a home remedy for the cry-cough-barf thing.

Joanne
12 years ago

I always, always think prison is a great analogy for the days when they are sick. I have a newborn right now and I truly feel like the only thing missing is the striped clothes and the ass rape. So there’s that, anyway!

Lisa
Lisa
12 years ago

Ooohhh! I just bought a bike this weekend also! I also bought this http://www.ibertinc.com/ to take the kadiddle along. Here’s to more breezes blowing in your hair, and the bike can be used as a quick escape route, if needed, from the little monsters, er children, living in your abode.

Pocklock
12 years ago

Congrats on the 5K! I’m one week into C25K. My race is Labor Day weekend. God help me.

Hope the little chicken is better soon. You deserve a break.

KIM
KIM
12 years ago

Trust me on this. Download a smutty romance novel onto whatever portable device you use, and listen while you bike.

I can do 15 miles without blinking, if I have the right book to listen to :>)

BellyGirl
12 years ago

Linda, I wish you good luck with your ass – mine never seems to get used to that little bike seat. I must have the most sensitive sit bones on the planet, because despite 8 weeks of training, my rear still screams a little the day after a ride.

(I can’t believe I just wished you luck with your ass. Sheesh, no shame).

Shawna
12 years ago

Out of curiosity, how long has it been since you owned a bike? I’ve not had much chance to use mine in the last couple of years because of children too small to put in the perched-on-the-back child seats, but hope to get out and about more this year. Even so, I cannot imagine not owning a bike. And I don’t ride strictly for exercise, but rather, I like the recreational, get-out-of-the-house aspect and I love to be able to get around faster than walking.

Kristin
12 years ago

Your post summed up my weekend very nicely. Not the particulars, but the feeling.

Hellish = starting 2 and a half year old sleeping in new big boy bed in new big boy room. Awesome = being outside constantly, doing lots of gardening, and lots of trips to the park.

As for biking, that is one of my favorite ways to unwind. Unfortunately I am due with our second child in less than 2 months, so that activity is out for me right now. It makes me so sad to see my husband and son (in the Burley) take off for a ride on Saturday afternoons. Although, it does mean I can take a nap so…there are high and low points to everything! I’m sure you’ll continue to enjoy it!

Shelly
12 years ago

Nice work on the 5K. I love riding my bike, exploring neighborhoods IS fun!

Shelly
12 years ago

Oh and the riding the bike/ass hurting thing? I KNOW. Day 2? Walking like a penquin….sexy.

Sundry
Sundry
12 years ago

Shawna: well, let’s see . . . 20 years, maybe? I last had one in high school, I think it was a Schwinn 10-speed. Bikes have, like, ADVANCED a lot since then, I had no idea.

Amy
Amy
12 years ago

Thanks for making me feel normal… My son had roseola & a double ear infection last summer. We ended up in the ER for dehydration. So not fun. Every time we’re holed up in the house (or ER) for sick-kid-fun it reminds me of the stage of grieving where you feel that the outside world has either stopped completely or should be in the same hellish state that you’re in. There’s no way it can be functioning like normal, right? :) Before having a child, I always thought a sick-kid at home was like you see on TV – lay around & watch TV all day, eat soup, etc. Not so much.

victoria
victoria
12 years ago

I really, really like your writing. When you write about highs and lows experienced so lcosely together, I wonder, How do you think sobriety has affected your experience of your emotions? Do you think you experience emotional highs and lows with more intensity and clarity than when you were getting sedated regularly, or do you feel generally calmer and more mellow? Has your tolerance for frustration changed?

I guess it’s kind of hard for you to compare, since your sobriety coincided with a much BIGGER change in your life: becoming a parent, but when I read about your highs-and-lows weekend I just thought I would mention this as a possible topic.

Anna A
Anna A
12 years ago

Congrats on surviving the weekend! My husband and I are biking regularly (I was somehow tricked into doing the STP) and honestly, it’s by far my favorite form of exercise. So much more to see/explore in an hour of cycling than an hour of running. Have fun!

GingerB
12 years ago

Sorry about the body fluids. We had the double ear infection too, and seemed to have popped a drum this weekend, which I don’t understand, after five days of antibiotics, but who am I to understand a 9 month old? Who? Nobody!!

Well done on the 5K, that rocks!

k-stin
k-stin
12 years ago

What kind of bikes did you get? I want to get a new one and yours looks great!

trackback
12 years ago

[…] turn around. And then they turn around again, and you’re low again. Sundry summed it up here, but it’s so true. I was all hand-wringy and weepy yesterday about something (Sam’s […]

Korinna
12 years ago

I practically chew my nails down to nubbins and am working a stomach gripped with fear when mealtime approaches and we’re in the throws of the cough-barfspray effects of a cold.

I’ve taken to draping us and the surrounding furniture in a ginormous beachtowel should everything come flying back up.

What a horrible state of things.

Am glad to know, though, that you did actually come BACK home after your 5K. Instead of just continuing to run OUT of town.

Emme
Emme
12 years ago

Running and biking both gave me the sanity to make it thru the daily struggle of parenting 3 boys alone. Now they are all teenagers and I am still running and cycling – it’s the best!

Swistle
12 years ago

Oh totally. A bad afternoon and I’m like, “Not only do I NO LONGER HAVE ANY BABY FEVER AT ALL, but I CAN’T BELIEVE I HAD ANY BABIES AT ALL OR THAT ANYONE EVER HAS.”

Erin
Erin
12 years ago

Thank you, thank you, thank you for your 5K recap. I’m running my first in – oh 29 years on Sunday. Baby girl is almost 10 months old, so I’ve got no excuses. Except that I don’t want to. And it may be cold. And I’m going to look a fool next to the people who actually like to run. And I kind of hurt my foot. And I’m not in as good of shape as I wanted to be.

I tell myself these things EVERYDAY before I go run. Then I run the 3 miles anyway. Sunday is my baseline time, there is another 5K the weekend after my daughter’s 1st birthday. I’m hoping to see significant improvement in a)My attitude toward running, b)my body and c) my time!

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8 years ago

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