Friday, January 25, 2013

My Little Hospital Helper

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Thankful Thursday: DADA & Home

It's thankful Thursday time! We all have so much to be thankful for and we love to take this opportunity just to write down each and everything that comes to mind. Please take this time to share with us what you're thankful for as well. If you have a blog expressing your thankfulness, please share the link! Without further ado, here's what we're thankful for:

Mandi's List:

I'm thankful to have my hubby home after a 2-week hospital stay. It isn't fun to be apart, so I am thankful to have my hubby back!! He makes me life more fun, and honestly, easier! Ha! 

I'm thankful Mckenna has her daddy back. This is the first stay that you could tell Mckenna knew her daddy was gone and was noticeably excited to have him back. He got home after she went down for the night, and when she got up Tuesday morning, she was THRILLED to see him. She gave him a long, tight hug and while hugging him looked at me with total excitement on her face and exclaimed, "DADA" if to say, "mom, are you seeing this?! It's DADA!!!"

I'm thankful for other people's creativity. I stumbled upon a blog the other day that has GREAT ideas for kids. One of which are "busy boxes"...where you put activities in boxes and rotate through them, and let the kid pick which box to play with at certain times. Many work on fine motor skills in fun ways. I assembled 5 boxes for Mckenna this morning and holy cow, she LOVES them!!

Ronnie's List:

I'm thankful for a quick two week hospital stay. It's never easy being away from my family, but we're more than willing to make such a sacrifice as we believe the hospital benefits me greatly. It was also much easier on Mandi as her parents are back in town and willing (and eager) to hang out with Mckenna as needed.

I'm thankful that it wasn't any worse. "It" being the virus that assisted my trip to the hospital. I was getting close to my bi-annual stay in the Hole, but I thought I'd be able to push it off a bit. After catching the virus on December 23rd, and not getting better after 2 weeks, I decided I needed some back-ups. I'm just thankful that it was a virus and not something worse that worked its way through my system.

I'm thankful for the opportunity to own a home. We started hosting the Bible study at our house every Thursday and that wouldn't be possible if we didn't have a place to live. It's also nice to have the space to accommodate  8 adults, 7 kids and a babysitter. Not sure why we're so blessed!

So, what are you thankful for today?

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

I'm a Wimp

First things first, I feel I should say this is Mandi posting, since it's not Monday! Although, in the context of this post, Ronnie is a wimp too...

Let me explain...

On Sunday my mom and I did the Phoenix Rock n Roll Half Marathon. We decided about a month ago to run/walk it. Neither of us had been training for it, but we both are in reasonable shape and keep up a decent amount of running. Up until the race we both were just doing 2.5-3.5 mile runs a couple days a week. I should mention, I was doing an interval training class and we were both lifting at the gym, so we weren't just sitting around, but never-the-less, we weren't running much. I did do one 7.5 mile run a couple weeks before the race, just to see how it felt. The 7-miler felt ok, but to say I was ready for it to be over about 5 miles in would be an understatement.

Based on our training, or lack there of, we decided we were just going to run/walk it for fun. No pressure. We figured worse case we'd run half and walk half. Our plan of attack started at run 2, walk 1. So we'd run 2, walk 1, run 2, walk 1, repeat. Then the day before the race we decided we'd shoot for run 3, walk 1.

On race day, we felt a bit nervous. We both didn't care about our time or pace, but I think neither of us wanted to be the one to hold the other one back. Standing in our corral, we got our game faces on (aka, joked around by how out of shape we were and that we were crazy for doing this). Here we are!

The view from our corral

The gun went off and we were on our way...well almost. It was a wave start, so each corral was started separately. We had to wait 30 minutes to start...that was a LONG 30 minutes. We started out strong. We both felt good, with the exception of a couple aches in our joints from the cold air, but those went away once we warmed up a bit.

Mile 2 came and went, and we kept running.

Mile 3 came and went, and we kept running.

Mile 4 came, we ran another .5 and decided to walk a bit.

As we walked we realized we still felt our legs. We weren't out of breath while running, our legs were just tired and sore. But they continued to be tired and sore while we walked. We were being passed by people. We are both too proud to be passed (yup, I said it). So between being too competitive and still feeling our legs while walking, we didn't walk the full mile we intended, we walked around .5 miles or a little less. So we started running.

Another 4 miles came and went...and we decided to walk a bit. Again, we still felt our legs, so we started back up in a little less than .5 miles. Here's us, mid-run...clearly I had a bit of trouble getting a good shot.

We ran. We felt tired, but we ran. We joked that the key was just to be more proud than you are out of shape.

At around mile 11.5 we decided to walk another .5 just to "rest up" before the final push. Again we walked just under .5 and started back up.

It was the last 1.1 miles. We both were tired. Here is my rockstar momma pushing through (she didn't know I took this...sneaky sneaky).

It didn't feel like a walk in the park...but 1.1 miles later, we had crossed the finish line. We did it in 2:09:22 - at a 9:53 mile pace. Here we are within a couple minutes of finishing.

I learned a valuable lesson through this half marathon experience. I'm a WIMP. Yup. I am. I had only been running 3 miles. I ran one 7.5-miler, and decided that was enough. I was tired. But then, without legit training, I ran 13.1. You know what that means? That means I didn't push myself nearly enough leading up to race day. I had the ability to run FAR FARTHER than I had been. I had the ability to run 13.1, but I was stopping after 3 or 7.5 miles. I had been wimping out...FOR MONTHS.

I can't help but wonder what I am capable of if I push my body on a daily basis like I did on Sunday. How much faster would I be? How much farther would I run? How much more fit could I be? Because I put in a lot of hours at the gym and working out, I had never stopped and asked myself am I being my best? Am I achieving my full potential? On Sunday I realized I'm not! If I had to guess, most of us aren't pushing ourselves as much as we could. Most of us sell ourselves and our potential short. I think in one regard or another, lots of us are wimps. I thought I was pushing myself, until I pushed myself even further. I've decided not to wimp out anymore. I'm going to push myself beyond what I thought was pushing myself before. My motto always has been (thanks to an old soccer coach), "our body is unlike any other machine, it adapts to the stresses we put on it"...this weekend I realized I'm not putting enough "stress" on it!! Look out body, you're about to be PUSHED like never before!!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Tune-up Report

Nothing quite compares to pulling into the drive way and getting that first embrace from my wife after a two week stay in the Hole.

I wanted to thank all of you who have sent notes along or been praying for me during my latest tune-up. As you know, I came down with a virus of sorts before the Christmas holiday and I was never able to shake it completely. Rather than continue my slow decline, I decided it was best to call in the back-ups (the back-ups of course being my doctors). They agreed that a stay in the Hole was probably best before I got any worse.

I checked in on January 7th with an FEV1 of 65%. I was actually quite surprised and pleased with that number. You guys know how it is though. There are times that we feel worse than "the number" and times that we feel better. This was one of those times that I felt worse than my number usually indicates. I'd definitely have to chalk that up to the head/sinus/chest crud that was going on.

The first thing they did when I checked in was to test me for the flu and RSV. As you know, there is quite the epidemic going on throughout the country right now, but fortunately, both came back negative. That was good and bad. It was great that I didn't have one of those nasty bugs, but that also meant that I had a virus, which means I just had to take the wait-it-out approach. We proceeded to treat me for a CF exacerbation during my stay. This meant IV antibiotics around the clock and 4 treatment sets a day plus plenty of rest.

Well, it seems that that was just what the doctor ordered! Around day 9 or 10 I started to feel a little bit better each day. Let's back up a bit so I can put that into context.

I almost always feel worse than when I checked in for the first 3 to 4 days. Then from day 5 to 7, 8, 9 or 10 I pretty much feel how I did before I came in but with less energy and coughing up more junk. Then from days 10 or so on I start to feel better and better each day. At least this is how it works out under the good scenario, which has happened to be the way it's been for the last 2 years or so.

So this time, after 14 days in the Hole, I felt like I had my energy back and was at a place where I could kick some major booty outside of the hospital walls. I also blew a 75% which hasn't happened in the confines of the hospital for about 10 years!! Generally, I get it around 70% or so and then work hard to get it to baseline before my follow-up appointment a month later. So this time, I'll see if I can move my baseline up a bit.

Anywho, thank you again for your support, well wishes and prayers. It's good to be home again!!