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2016-11-03 - 9:34 p.m.

I thought I lost a couple of entries as they had not shown up, but they are now here. In reading them I am struck by the fact my lovely tenant filled a pot on the back porch just about a month ago with Pansies. HA Seriously! The one flower that was on the back porch of the gentleman who gave me a tour of his yard, which I did NOT have in my yard.

So now I literally actually HAVE all the same flowers that he had growing in his yard this early Fall. My tenant has no idea of that lovely "coincidence".

Call me crazy but I really find those small things meaningful. They make my heart happy.

I enjoyed an absolutely wonderful weekend with him in which we visited a Frank Lloyd Wright home, went to Mass at a beautiful basilica and watched what he said was one of his favorite movies together. We also watched a Bills game, as alas he is a big fan.

I would love to be able to go to a game someday.

Logistically that is a challenge, but I am happy enough that we intend to spend time together when we can.

He commented on the phone after our weekend that the next day he put on one of his old CDs that he loved but hadn't heard in a long time, The Everly Brothers, and the song that played was the same romantic song that was playing during a wedding scene in the movie we watched.

My best friend in high school loved the Everly Brothers so I knew the song well,although have to admidt I couldn't recall the song playing in the movie when he asked if I remembered what was playing as he described the scene. He said he hoped he didn't sound too cooky to say he thought that there is a reason we met each other now and are in each others lives. I told him certainly not at all, as I always thing those who are meant to be in our lives manifest at just the right time and place for SOME reason. We don't always know what that reason is.

Strangely, the Marine Core Marathon is over and believe it or not, my neighbor who has needed a ride to work and needed to leave by 5:30 AM each morning for the past six months who HAS BEEN MY MOTIVATOR and my MCM Training Plan consisted of offering him a ride to FORCE myself to get up and out each morning early enough to run suddenly DID NOT NEED A RIDE THIS WEEK!

How cool is that?

I mean, there are things happening in his life which are so very good. Sometimes there is a cloud with a silver lining of good...
a mix..
but the good news for him is that the two weeks before the MCM he didn's need me to drive him every day because his supervisor picked him up at 4:30 am a couple of days those weeks as they wanted him in the yard by 5am and are training him to supervise a team! Those days fell on days I really needed to sleep in! He has proved to be a hard worker who insists on quality work and puts in time to do it right and who motivates the others as he doesn't let the young kids do a crappy half way done job and tells them to take pride in their work. So even though he is a bit loud and seems crazy his boss really loves him. Loves him enough that he has offered to help him out in handling his own challenges in any way he can and wants to mentor him to move up and progress.

So very nice to see.

And so very cool that literally the day the race was over I was told he didn't need a ride ALL WEEK so this week I got to sleep in and catch up on rest during this post marathon recovery period!

All good here !

My front LOOKS done so the HOA is likely happy. They guy who is doing the work has a girl he lives with who he has been in relationship for years who he is now the primary caretaker of as she struggles with cancer and chemotherapy. He also helps out her 80 something father who he says is a dear friend. Apparently they had "ended" their dating relationship a couple of years ago but then she got sick and he continued to be there for her... so not sure he is "single" as he purported to be...but might really be, but regardless that is love , to not abandon but care for someone in the way you can. Kinda reminds me of Henry and June who were not in a romantic relationship but yet lived together for a couple of years AFTER the so called "relationship" ended as Henry just wasn't going to abandon her. So this guy is still taking care of the girl and helping out her Father who helps him out. They are his family and he has some days he needs to be home. Other days he needs to take a better paying job as he did cut me a deal and is charging less than the going rate around here. So I am grateful he did most of the work and he promises he will come and finish up the inside trim and paint the drywall before Thanksgiving. He's been a little slow and piecemeal getting it done, but that is because he did give me a break as he is good friends with my neighbors who I help with rides to work. (He is their youngest child's Godfather). So we all help each other out and I told him take higher paying jobs and knock them off and come finish up in between those gigs. I am not really in a rush. He is also letting me pay him a little at a time. The initial quite was $1300 which was a deal for this area for completely rebuilding my whole front entrance area. However when he pulled the siding off and knocked off the last of rotted wood he discovered a main beam support under the house was eaten away by termites so that also needed repair. I gave the go ahead to do the more extensive repairs and then when he took out the windows the seals were not good so I had to buy new windows, so the costs ran up almost double. But STILL, that is a better rate than I would have found from anyone else.

The one think I hope is not a problem with the HOA is that I didn't replace the window transom with one identical to the rest of the neighborhood, or the window next to the front door. Those both had not opened which I am SURE is a safety thing- no windows very EASY to get to in order to open them, and no windows that can be opened that are right near an entrance door. It seems to be a design more for safety than another practicality. However it is much cheaper to just replace the windows with standard ones that open, so that was what I did. The guy got some decent Anderson Windows from Home Depot and put them in along with the whole rebuild front. I just hope the HOA has no concerns about that.

I did what I could afford.

Ce la vie...

The MCM went well but was a little anti-climactic as my Marine friend and his wife were actually gone before I finished so didn't see them that day. I did enjoy their company the night before at the Semper Fi Fund dinner along with Alexey. I had the vision of friends cheering me on...

ONE actually DID Make it, but he is an acquaintance from work, our IT repair guy who works the help office, who lives in D.C. and told me cheers for the marathon every year as he lives right on the road it goes down. I DID see him standing at the corner after I crossed the Key Bridge, but my brain thought "that looks like Joe" and then my brain thought " But he is not a police officer" and then as I kept running and was half way down the street "No wait that guy was standing WITH A police officer talking to him... that looked like Joe, it wasn't the officer.... that might have been him" It was like my brain registered the recognition and seeing him next to an officer standing in DC didn't make the connection until a few minutes later. That seeing something, someone out of the context you typically see them in so don't recognize them thing!! Likewise he didn't recognize me or didn't see me (as he is a talker and I swear he was talking to the officer when I caught sight of him and I think he glanced at me with no recognition whatsoever which is why I didn't register it was him either! Just seeing out of context and out of the *Work* attire!) At work the next day he told me he was there in front of porta pottys standing next to an officer and then I realized "OH I DID SEE YOU!" but I was not sure it was him!!

Ce la vie... I would have been stoked and picked up the pace more had I known it was him!

I got a text from hiking partner for years, my friend who happens to be an engineer AT THE PENTAGON that said " Sorry I forgot it was your race today! I came into work and only when saw all the crowd realized today was the marathon!"

I swear I love my hiking friend but am thinking he must be on the spectrum... HA HA....He is so sweet... but goofy and I swear socially awkward in a weird way but also wonderful in his weird way. He and the lady we have hiked with for years, who he has dated (maybe still is? Not sure last I talked to him were just friends but think there is still possibility for them...) Just came back from a trip they took to Iceland and Germany with another friend of his (an old high school teacher actually.)

Last I saw him he cheered me on when I ran my first half marathon in preparation for this full marathon. I totally expected him to cheer me at the finish line since he works right there!
Oh well, at least he sent a text once he figured it out later in the day!

Another hiking friend thought he might come, but he was out of town on an excursion himself. We connect just a couple of times a year (if that), but as he works not that far from me we plan on catching up over coffee one of these days to swap stories of our latest adventures, and I always hear his relationship updates of how things are going in his world.

I also REALLY anticipated my girls would be cheering me on!! They however were just EXHAUSTED themselves by the time I finished the marathon that when I ran across the finish line one was napping in the Semper Fi Fund tent and the other who came was reading Harry Potter of course!

I did see them at mile 18, but by the time I ran by Alexy was pushing a big broom to collect all those crushed cups from water and Sadie was carrying a trash bag picking up trash. The encouraging quip I got from them was Alexy saying "Wow Mom, We didn't think you were going to make it! You made it this far!" incredulously.

Thanks kid for the encouragement.


It is a different experience running at the BACK of the pack for a marathon.

My marathon experience started out with me being a bit nervous I would get there on time as I decided that even though the metro doesn't start running until 7AM, I would be better off driving to the metro and parking there and hopping on the metro to go into D.C. than trying to drive anywhere and park and find the race for a couple of reasons, including I would be LESS LIKELY to get lost and not be on time EVEN IF the metro was leaving a bit on the late side. I have a penchant for getting very lost and driving around for inordinate amounts of time, for periods so very long they are only matched by my irrationally never ending patience.
I get so lost that I settle in to enjoy the scenery and make an adventure.

[Aside here: OH yeah, that was one of the things I appreciated about the man I enjoyed spending time with the weekend before the marathon- he was driving and we took wrong turns more than once, and each time it was indeed an adventure. I won't share all those stories here... but one was driving through a beautiful park unexpectedly and enjoying the first trees that changed color. It really was appreciated in the moment and I think I met someone who matches both my ability to get lost as well as my patience and appreciation for the experiences along the way!)

So my girls, donning their super hero costumes as they were manning the water station for the Semper Fi Fund, and I hopped on the metro shortly after 7AM to head into Washington D.C. We get there and I am heading to the race start and suddenly I REALLY REALLY REALLY Have to go to the bathroom. I wanted to be hydrated so drank a lot of water that morning. (I always do actually.... but don't hop on a train for almost an hour typically!)

I am starting to fall asleep as I write... too late here and past my bedtime as I was going to turn in a whole hour and a half ago actually....

so going to leave it at this.
I started off the MCM waiting in line for a porta potty .. then having to ditch that line to make the start with a little bit of "leaking'.... and praying I don't have an accident as I head to start.... then SO HAPPY to find a set of porta potties really near the start without a line so I actually did get to go to the bathroom to avert a full blown accident!!! I was just a little uncomfortable but RAN to the beginning to MAKE IT with only four minutes to spare!!!

I had waited about 20 in that one bathroom line !!

SO the race was a bit anticlimactic as didn't expect to START off the race with that little bit of discomfort of the *small* accident ( hey I have had SIX children!! and you know haven't had a lover or practiced those kegals in FAR TOO LONG... I mean that part is a bit out of shape I realize that morn!! After all my training! I thought of all those times I had men interested in me who I was like Sorry... I got to go home.. I have to run in the morning!! and decided I preferred to stay in on the rare night I had free... Seriously I turned down dates, and was just not INTERESTED as I wanted to get my sleep and get my runs in (and none of them over the past couple years were the right guy either frankly).

YEah have to keep one's WHOLE body in shape and not neglect your exercise ladies...
Tighten up and count to ten.. then do it again ...

Oh I forget how that goes...

Was not conscious of that important exercise until that MCM Start!!

What a reminder!

So I optimistically found the porta potty without a line and was thanking God I didn't have an EMBARASSING accident burst forth for all to see and figured once I started running I would be sweating soon enough anyway it wouldn't feel any different being just a bit damp... and took off running to get to the start.

I was going at a good clip when I STARTED the race! I felt good, was not feeling tired but motivated and honestly soon enough my theory it would feel just the same was TRUE

It helped I was wearing a good pair of running shorts with that liner that is designed to wick away moisture.
I used to MOCK spending money on fancy clothes and gear, but that day was GRATEFUL for my EMS running shorts made out of well engineered materials as I think that did truly wick away moisture!!

So there is the unexpected start of my experience.

Then the run itself was really absolutely lovely for the first 14 miles or so.

I will have to write about that another time however as its 10:33 pm and I have to go to bed.

I rested ALL Week, awoke naturally each day without and alarm and today woke at 5AM with the idea of going for a run. I instead did some stretches and decided to just go back to bed.

Tomorrow however, I do want to get a nice 3-5 mile run in to start my day.

That is the BEST part of training and running a marathon- having developed a REGULAR routine and ENJOYING a nice *EASY* 5 mile run regularly!!

I am looking forward to winter 5Ks!!! and maybe even a 10K. Those will be just so relaxing and after this EASY.

But before I go to bed, this is quite AMAZING and a surprise even though I SHOULD Have noticed:

My best friend from law school was diagnosed with idiopathic hypersomnia.

YUP She is narcoleptic too (without the cataplexy)

Sleep studies (multiple) confirmed this. I believe she has had this condition most of her life as well. Being chronically tired was just NORMAL for her!

*I am still convinced my ex-husband (the girls' father ) has a sleep disorder as well, possibly the same exact one. He clearly had Apnea. He is just too damn STUBBORN to have ever listened to me and considered getting tested. Sad, as it could be the #1 cause of his anger and inability to control himself in those moments when he lost it. Chronic ongoing sleep deprivation can cause such things... but ce la vie.... can't force someone to be open to listening to suggestions of others.

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