October 31, 2006


Sometimes we write things, and we have no specific purpose in writing them. The beauty of the blog is that a lot of us find it easier to type than to write; so a blog for us is essentially a diary, or journal.
Writing your feelings/emotions objectifies those feelings. It takes away the wishy/washy, the subjective, the "maybe this is what I think" that is replaced 20 seconds later by "no this is what I really think." Some writers use the blog at times as a journal, a sort of diary for the electronic age. And those of us who are fortunate enough to read those entries essentially are voyeurs into the private life of the writer.
And as voyeurs, we must sit passively in the back, quietly, respectful of the actors, until the play is over or our criticism is solicited.

October 27, 2006

1 year

I decided to become fit during a period of self examination 1 year ago this week. Working overnight was taking its toll on me; well, I suppose if I am honest with myself, it actually was working overnight and then working a 12 hour day shift at a different hospital in between 2 overnight shift twice a week, then being dad on the other days. 70 + hours at work in addition to solo caretaker for 4 kids 4 or 5 days and a few nights a week. Wow was I a moody bas*ard.

So I changed. I stopped the extra work. But I started feeling guilty about having 2 days to myself, sans kids, sans work (although I still worked night before and night after) I needed something else to fulfill me, and I found it - crossfit.

Crossfit is run by a seasoned fitness trainer named Greg Glassman. He is a champion of efficient use of body weight exercises mixed with olympic lifts and gymnastics. By following his 20 or 30 minute a day workouts, I developed, maybe re-developed after a prolonged multi-year period of dormancy, a passion for fitness. Don't get me wrong, I wasn't that good of a crossfitter, but I did the posted exercises, sometimes in entirety sometimes scaled to my ability. This gave me a great base for transitioning into tri training.

But the thing I discovered that was paramount to my life was that obtaining a certain level of fitness completely levelled me. I'm still moody, I'll blame my dad for that, but none of my nurses have made formal complaints to hospital administration (yes I am exageratting Jan) in months now! I am more rested. I sleep better - occasionally. I think I need less sleep now - that my perception, although I can't tell you for the life of me why you would need less sleep after cycling for 40 miles with 2000 feet elevation gain then you would if you instead had sat at home and watched the tour on tv. Just doesn't make sense, G.

And I am a better dad now. The kids don't care that I don't have as much money. They have a dad that isn't moody. They have a dad that comes to eat lunch with them at school. They have a dad who isn't so tired he falls asleep while driving them to school. They have a dad who gets on his hands and knees and puts dinosaur claws on his hands to play monster. They have a dad who takes them running around the neighborhood to "practice" for their first 1 mile road race, whenever they decide that will be.

Life presents us with all sorts of challenges. Sometimes, we don't get it right the first time around. And we have a choice, to accept relative (or actual) defeat and bow down and wimper. Or to accept that there must be change, to MAKE change, and then to kick ass. But while we are kicking ass, we are doing it with the knowledge that we may fail again. But that's ok. Because failure is only failure when it doesn't eventually give way to success, sweet sweet sweet... success.

October 20, 2006

Inspitation from Anna

Sometimes you get a bit of inspiration that hits you like a slap in the face - completely unexpected.
This week has been fairly typical for me. I worked overnights on Saturday thru Thursday. I'm sure there were lives saved, the typical battles against emphysema and acute coronary syndrome, and the ever constant interactions with the acutely psychotics with whom I tend to enjoy a little more than I would like to admit. I think being able to see crazy people in the ER helps me keep from tilting too far in that direction.

And I trained, although not as much as I wanted to. I ran some, with a pr long run of 13 miles. It was the only running I have done since race for the cure last weekend. A little swimming, even less biking (a measly 14 stationary miles this morning...).

Lots of time being daddy. Frequently I am asked how I take care of the kids during the daytime after working all night. I never have a good answer, because I honestly am not sure how to answer. It is absolutely insane actually, but it h as to be done. The oldest girls have to get to school and back home, and to ballet and of course to Barnes and Noble for reading and yummy cookies. The younger two just need daddy, Anna to have someone to play with and sing to and say I love you to (so often it is adorable), and Aidan it seems mainly to point out every tractor and firetruck to (again and again and again until I acknowledge that yes Aidan, there is another tractor, and to be as interested as I was 64 tractors or 20 minutes ago...).

So this morning I got a reminder of how much pleasure I get from the most simplest of things. Poor Anna is 3 and has always had a little trouble with constipation. I heard her struggling on the potty this morning, and, as usual, I went to see if I could help in any sanitary way. I sat down in front of her, let her lean into me and wrap her arms around my neck while I rubbed her low back. And so we were for what seemed like 10 or 15 minutes until at last "Daddy it's coming!!!" And after she finished and found me in the playroom dressing Aidan, she ran to me and hugged me and in her oh-so-sweet voice, "Thank you daddy for helping me go stinky. I love you!" I love you too Anna...