Saturday, March 15, 2014

Take two of these, and call me in the morning

Twenty four hours ago, I was looking desperately for a good hole to crawl into. A cold and gloomy place to curl into the fetal position, and have a good cry. And I didn’t have to look very far to find one.

So far, 2014 is really sticking it to me. Upon recovering from a long bout with pneumonia, I set about trying to regain some strength and begin training for a spring marathon. I knew it wouldn’t be my best or fastest, but was glad to be moving again. A couple of weeks in, I could see that an unusually heavy load at work was going to challenge my training, but was trying to hold the bare minimum of a program together with duct tape, popsicle sticks, and the occasional cross-training session at the gym.

And then this week, all hell broke loose. To be more specific: a plumbing line in my upstairs neighbor’s condo broke loose, and our home was ravaged in a matter of hours, while we were at work. I’ll spare you the details, but it will suffice to say that we have been relocated to a long-term stay hotel while the demolition crews have been pulling up floors, cutting out walls, and gutting rooms. We still have no idea how long it will take for our condo to be put back together, but we do know that we’re in this for a good long haul. I own a particularly clever and destructive dog who cannot be left alone in a strange hotel room while my husband and I go to work every day, so we’re staying in the suburbs (about 45 minutes from my home and office) to be near my gem of a mother-in-law, who is able to keep her for us, as long as we can help out with the many miles of walking daily that are required. (Terriers, you know?) Life for the past several days has been a blur of packing, moving, commuting, meetings with plumbers and insurance adjusters, shuttling the dog back and forth, and – oh yeah – working. No doubt, we’ll settle into a routine eventually, but at the moment, it is pure chaos. It’s sad, disorienting, anxiety-provoking, and exhausting. The spring marathon? It was already questionable at best, and now it’s officially out the window.

Our hotel room depresses me to no end. I’m out of my element in every sense of the word, in a neighborhood I don’t know, surrounded by fast food and chain restaurants. I’m living out of a suitcase of clothes and a few boxes of personal stuff hastily thrown together late at night. And the wireless sucks. In the first couple of days, I was in a daze, still so busy with long days of work that I didn’t reflect too deeply on what was happening. I mostly just laughed about it, and ate a little more pie than usual. And then last night, with the workweek over, it all hit me like a huge sack of potatoes (did I mention that spring marathon was in Boise, ID?), and I started to get frustrated, whiny, and sad.

Hotel room veggie slaw
I woke up this morning still in a rotten mood, but after partaking in some free continental breakfast, took a walk in the warm sunshine over to my mother-in-law’s to pick up my dog for the day, and gave myself a pep talk. This is a stressful life event to be sure, but this is not a crisis. I’m pissed off about the marathon falling apart, but the fact that training isn’t feasible for me right now isn’t a reason to stop taking care of myself. Lay off the pie, Amy. I can surely squeeze in a few “mental health miles” a few days a week, and hey, I’ve been meaning to check out YogaGlo anyway. No reason I can’t roll out the mat and hold a few poses right here on the colorfully-carpeted floor of the Marriott Residence Inn. We picked up our CSA delivery yesterday, and now our little hotel fridge is packed with fresh local vegetables and fruit. I got “home” from that walk, dug out a cutting board, a knife, and a plastic bowl from the hotel room cupboards, and chopped myself a beautiful slaw of bok choy, cabbage, fennel, radish, carrot, and apple. I felt happier with the first bite. Maybe tomorrow I’ll lace up and go find an access point to the Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve, which I think is around here somewhere ... maybe that’s it, right there past the Carl’s Jr.?


  1. Oh dear, when it rains it pours... I'm so sorry this is happening, and at the same time I'm sure things will start to get better. It's nice you have a place for the doggy and a fridge big enough for those goodies. I will run a few extra miles for you this week :) Maybe an early summer marathon? If you can come up in Western WA you're good - we have temps in the 60s till mid July :)
    Thinking of you!

  2. I ran at Los Penasquitos once. It was beautiful -- although I was glad that I missed the "WATCH OUT FOR BOBCATS AND SNAKES THAT WANT TO KILL YOU!" signs until I was walking back to my car...

    I also kept wanting to call it the Taquitos Canyon, which is way more amusing/delicious, but not at all accurate.

    Definitely some therapy miles in those trails. Sorry to hear that 2014 hasn't been kind. Here's hoping the desire to hit the road, combined with an inability at times to do so, ignites a bodacious fire within that lights up the rest of 2014. Sending positive thoughts your way!

  3. If you need a longer run start at the beginning of PQ trail and run to Hera Hub in Sorrento. I'll happily drive you back. :-).

    p.s. the coffee is awesome here...