The countdown to Iron Girl begins...34 days until D-Day. Time to ramp up the suffering.Went for a run this morning pushing the end-all, be-all of suburban machinery -- the jogger. Strapped a total of 60 pounds of kid into the Doodlebug and was on my way.
Started with a light jog. Not bad. The jogger's pretty heavy, but not impossible. The morning is beautiful. Sun shining, but not overly hot. Kids have their drinks and graham crackers. We are in good shape.
Let me stop here and, for a moment, give you a visual. I am not a large person...5'2" on a good day. Some big-shot businessman actually told me years ago during my first stint as a newspaper reporter (me interviewing him) that I reminded him of Pokemon. I attribute this not only to my Asian-ness, but also my smallness. I remember fighting the urge to take my fingers, stretch my eyes out to create an even more exaggerated "slant," and say to him, "Oh, Tank you. Tank you so much. Me likey Pokemon. Pokemon nice."
Anyhow, I digress. Back to the visual...Ok, the fact is, I'm not tall. In fact, I'm rather short. And this Doodlebug contraption thing is HUGE. In fact, I think it might be bigger than me. Imagine a sweaty hobbit pushing a spaceship on wheels down a narrow bike path. Sexy.
We come up behind a couple of our neighbors out for a leisurely stroll. They say "hello," and I enthusiastically respond, "HI THERE!" and continue on my merry way. Believe it or not, in that brief moment, I'm one of those happy runners I used to see on the path and wonder if they'd sparked up a doobie before they strapped on their running shoes. Because no way, no how they could actually smile that stupid smile if they FELT how miserable this is.
So, jogging along, jogging along. Hmmm...Doodlebug weight starting to set in. I can do it, though, I can do it! Hmmmm. Sweat starting to pour. Breathing a little more labored. Oh, wait, here's someone familiar. Pain. Well hello, old friend. I knew you couldn't stay away.
"Mommy, why does Jack have two graham crackers and I only have one?"
"You ate one already. That's why."
"But, Mommy, I want another oooooone."
You have got to be kidding me. She is NOT going to start whining now when I'm starting to need every ounce of strength just to keep this God-forsaken Doodlebug, plus the two small people in it, moving forward.
"But I don't want to be quiet."
"Well, if you can't be quiet, I'm going to have to drop you off here in the woods and pick you up on the way back."
Not a nice or proud mommy moment, but it worked.
OH GOD. Here comes the hill. I hurt. My feet hurt. My legs hurt. My arms hurt. My hands hurt. My head hurts? I push that boulder up the hill, thinking that I might actually die on the way up. Trying not to fall, I forget to consider that we will soon be quickly moving in the opposite direction.
All of the sudden, we're careening down the hill. I'm literally like one of those cans tied to a just-married car bumper, my body bouncing and flinging from side-to-side as the Doodlebug barrels down the hill. "Whoa!" I holler as if I'm trying to rein in a horse. "Whoa!" People coming toward me on the opposite side of the path are looking at me funny. I don't even care. I'm just trying to to make it down without eating dirt.
"Are you OK, Mommy?"
"Yes, honey, of course. Why?"
"You're making funny noises. Where's daddy? I like it when Daddy pushes us 'cause he goes REAL fast!"
Kid, be happy you mommy didn't leave you by the gingerbread house back there in the woods.
Run continues. Hill is behind us. Kids munch quietly on their snacks, and I regain control of the Millenium Falcon. Back on track, I finish the run.
Now if I can only walk without feeling like my ass is going to dislocate from my body...
The Gratitude Experiment
2 days ago