Monday, March 28, 2011

down but not out


Two weeks ago I started feeling off.  It felt a lot like I felt last January and that was scary.  I went to work, to court, then finally gave up and went home.  Waking up at 3 a.m. the next day I had to crawl to the bathroom as I was so dizzy and nauseas that I couldn’t stand up.  The fever and chills started and when I finally got a call back from my doc my temp had hit 102 and I was directed to the ER.  I got in the car with tears in my eyes and with so much trepidation, I went.

I got to the ER with hands cramped from a lack of oxygen, a really low pulse, a high heart rate and so much pain.  I had an IV, x-rays and CT within the hour and was on my way to a room, 3048, in just a few more.  All quite speedy for the average ER (2:30 on a Tuesday afternoon.  Go figure).

Being moved to that room on that floor I was scared, downright petrified really.  But I knew how things worked there and I knew I wanted to be better and home ASAP.  There were tests and doctors popping in.  There was a midline put in at my bedside (for the second time in 3 years, thanks Suzy!) that made things worlds easier and there was the continued bad feeling.  There were some bad fever spikes, more low blood pressure, a constant potassium drip and as each day moved in to the next, the fear that I’d be there longer than acceptable.

After all the tests the decision was a virus that had upset my Crohn’s and was making itself comfy in my gut.  As soon as it started to make an exit I tried to reach a d├ętente with food, the condition precedent to my being able to go home.  It didn’t go so well at first, but eventually the graham crackers and I reached an agreement of sorts.  After 6 long days I was on my way home.  I was exhausted but I was on my way home.

I went back to work the next day and even though I tried to take it easy, I felt like I’d been hit by a bus.  The week went on forever and I still didn’t feel quite like me.  I’m still not sure I’m all the way there yet and when things are knocked down, it’s hard to get back to where they were.  And this is where things get frustrating – I take meds to keep my immune system out of complete freak out mode, but this also suppresses it, making it easier to get every darn bug, virus and bacteria that comes within sneezing distance.  But without those meds things run amuck and my Crohn’s is way out of control.  I’m not crazy about the side effects of the 12 pills I take each day and I’m not sure that they work so well.  I want to try something new, but know that everything has side effects and I might be poking the bear.  It’s a balancing act that I’m hope to walk smoothly.

So I continue to be on the mend.  I wonder if I couldn’t have fought it off at home, but am guessing that as much as hospital stays are frustrating and scary, going was the right thing to do.  I have been running low on energy but I am hoping to be back on my treadmill soon.  The virus knocked me down, but not out for sure.  As they say…onward!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

it's true!

the 2011 Las Vegas Rock n' Roll Half Marathon will be run at night!  the half will start at 5:30 p.m. on December 4, 2011 and i couldn't be more excited!  doing it at night will make the spectators a whole different crowd and give all of us taking those steps so many more things to see along the way.  with my Team Challenge family, it's going to be another wonderful experience.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

3.52 and a rumor

i stepped on the treadmill yesterday to give it a go in earnest for the first time in weeks.  it was the the first day in many that i didn't feel completely at war with my crohn's and i wasn't super stuffy from whatever upper respiratory silliness has been lingering for a while.  i felt great the first quarter mile or so.  i even ran for four minutes straight (that isn't a long, nor is it a great athletic feat, but for me, who is not a runner, and who has bad knees, it was a good thing).  around 1.25 miles, i started feeling a little worn out.  maybe i had started out too fast?  maybe i was dehydrated?  maybe i was just that pathetically out of shape?  i kept at it and had hit two miles before i thought i would.  i was adjusting the speed between 3.8 and 4.2 and kept putting one foot in front of the other.   i started to get my stride in order and was feeling pretty good by the middle of the second mile.  i decided to focus more on time than distance and got in a solid 55 minutes before i shut it down.  it wasn't the fastest pacing, it certainly wasn't the most even, but it was a good distance and time for having been away from it for almost two months and i'm happy with it.

as for the rumor...the buzz is that this is going to be run at night this year.  at night!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


things have been quiet here.  well, quiet on the work out front.  my crohn's (so funny that i refer to it as 'mine', but i think taking ownership is important), and a sinus infection haven't been quiet as subdued.  it is times when i can't get out to do what i so want to that remind why i started the Team Challenge journey.  i haven't been getting in the miles i want, but the dedication and motivation are both still very much there.  i will get back on the treadmill.  i will get back on the track.  i will be in vegas in december.  and one day, my crohn's will be something  i had, not something i have to fight.

Monday, January 17, 2011

one year ago today started the longest 27 days of my life


today is filled with so many emotions for me.  there is joy and pride at where i am just a year later and how hard i worked to get here.  there is sadness that things got where they were and that my friends and family had to deal with any of that.  there is fear that i'll ever have to feel that terrible again.  there is some confusion as there are days and times i don't recall even after having the pieces filled in by several different people.  there is frustration that i ever had to feel so scared and so much pain.  there is thankfulness for the people who did so much to make those days as not-awful as they could have in even the smallest ways.  there is wonder at what the human body can endure and come back from.  there is empowerment at the way i chose to deal with things that i normally have so little control over.  there is frustration that i still have struggles and that medications still aren't quite in balance.  there is humble knowing that to get things completely sorted that is going to take other people, and knowing that there are still days when i have to give in and let crohn's have its way.  those 27 days in the hospital, the longest of my life, started one year ago - they were the beginning of a year of change, growth, hope and so much more.  crohn's is an awful thing.  it's a scary thing.  but i can look back at the last year and know that crohn's didn't get the best of me, it allowed me to be strong when i felt anything but.  so today is going to be an 'abbe day' where i'm allowed to feel and think and process.  and it's a day that i am again reminded that i am tougher than crohn's and that i have it, not the other way around.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Just about 18


This week I got in just about 18 miles on the treadmill.  I wasn’t able to do it every day I wanted to, but I feel pretty good about the mileage. 

I have been working on upping my speed for longer periods of time.  My hope is that I’ll be able to build up speed to go with the miles I am already to do.  I have also been giving short periods of running a try.  My knees don’t love it, so not sure I’ll be able to do a mixed workouts for higher mileage days, but if I can tolerate the running, I’m happy to mix it in.

I can’t wait for tomorrow so I can add a few more miles to my tally.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Keeping it up


So I’ve had my treadmill for about 10 days and I love it.  It is so great to be able to work out when I want, even if that is at a strange time, without having to pack up and head to a gym or figure out to be outside without a) freezing and b) falling on the ice.  I was lucky to have cooperative weather leading up to Vegas so I could be outside right up until I left for the airport, but it is presently 1 degree without taking the windchill into account. 

I’ve been able to keep my mileage up, doing between 5 and 6 miles at a time, and I have been able to keep better track of my speed because I can regulate it.  I’ve upped my MPH to 3.9, which feels great, and when I’m done I don’t feel exhausted or sore at all.  I think I can speed things up a bit, but I’d like to tack on a few more miles before I do.  Maybe this December I’ll be able to run/walk those 13.1 miles…A girl can dream, right?

Mile by mile, I’m keeping it up, keeping in shape, and keeping Vegas in my sights.