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~ The Situation ~

January 20, 2011

Wow, its been a while since I blogged.   I thought it was about time to finally write a post in the new year.   Hope you all had a great Holiday/New Year time.  Goals and resolutions still being kept?

As I blogged on November 12th HATRun I announced that I would be running a 50k.   And I was really excited about the prospect of the training all the way to the actual event plus getting to meet so many fellow friends and runners.   And then I found myself in a situation that I was really hoping would get better.   It hasn’t.

My mom had to spend 6 days in the hospital at the beginning of December.   It was a very scary time for me because even though my mom has leukemia, she NEVER had to be hospitalized.   So this was really her first experience in a hospital setting.

Many tests were given including a CAT scan of her brain.  The results were age appropriate atrophy.   Now we all know that atrophy is the partial or complete wasting away of a part of the body.   The doctor told my sister and myself that most older people’s brains start to “look old”.  There are changes that you wouldn’t see in a younger patient.  However, not all older people’s lives are IMPACTED by those changes.   Her life is IMPACTED by these changes and in turn my life is severely IMPACTED by the changes in my mom’s brain.

With all that said, and with a lot of discussion and thinking, I have decided to pull out of running HATRun.   First, I am severely undertrained and don’t want to risk injury.  I think my running is going really well right now and as a friend said to me, there will always be 50k races to run.   Second, I simply can’t plan that far ahead.  I am living one day at a time. What makes me really sad is the fact that I won’t even be able to attend the big Dailymile dinner planned the night before.   In my mind, I know in the big picture its not that big a deal, but when you start to really look forward to something, even the smallest thing is the biggest deal.

My mom cannot be left alone in the apartment.  So, right now I do have some help coming in, but because of the insurance my mom has, that will be ending sometime in February so I am now in the process of looking for help.  I so don’t know what I am doing.   I am not used to having people coming in and out of my home and neither is my mom.   We have a physical therapist, speech therapist and a home health aid.   I am not very good at telling people what to do, but yet I do it.  I never really thought I would become my mom’s parent.  I realize this may sound totally selfish, but sometimes, I need my mother to be a mother.   But she can’t.   I am a chef, caretaker, laundry doer, I am chief financial officer here at home.  I am pretty much the boss.   Sometimes, I see a glimpse of who my mother was, but then it goes away.   She still has a good sense of humor and makes me laugh so I try to make her laugh.   I love her and want her to live the rest of her life in comfort and knowing she is loved and cared for.

So, for now, I will focus on local races and just running when I can for as long as I can.   The Manhattan Half Marathon is this Saturday and as long as my sister is here, I should be able to run it.   My running is my therapy.   It my “me” time.  It is really and truly my only time that I am alone with my thoughts and alone, period.  It has been so long since I have seen any of my friends twitter, dailymile, runners, non-runners.  Sure, I have constant contact with everybody, but its never the same as spending real time IRL.

But, anybody that knows me, knows I am going to stay focused on the positives.   If I focus on the negatives too much, the positives will diminish in my mind.   My number one priority is my mother.   Her health.  And my family.   Then, all else will fall into place, I think.

Now, I don’t know about you guys, but I am getting tired of this long long winter.   Snow snow and more snow.  Make it STOP!!!!

In the meantime, I am embracing every pretty day I can.  Life is meant to live.   So don’t feel badly for me or my SITUATION!!!   OK?

He who has a why to live can bear almost any how.
Friedrich Nietzsche

15 Comments leave one →
  1. January 20, 2011 10:45 pm

    Your mom is a lucky mom to have you as a daughter. Love to you, sister.

  2. January 20, 2011 11:04 pm

    sounds like tough times and tough decisions. but you’re doing the right thing for you and your mom. hang in there!

  3. ally permalink
    January 21, 2011 1:47 am

    Much love to you as always…….I am here, you know how to reach me


  4. January 21, 2011 1:50 am

    Your attitude, as always, rules your situation. You’re a wonderful daughter and you’re doing a great job! I understand completely, the feeling of having to make your goals for yourself subordinate to another person. I’m not where I want to be yet either, but if we just keep running, take advantage of the opportunities and focus on the long term, we will get there.

  5. January 21, 2011 1:55 am

    As I want my grandfather slip away and seeing how much time my mom has to devote to him and my aging grandmother, I understand what you’re going through. You’re a great daughter to do what you’re doing. I’m so glad that you’re able to find time to run.

    As far as the winter goes, I’d love a good snow storm here, but I’m tired of the cold. I think since Dec. 1, there have been just a few days that I could label as “nice.” Otherwise, I could use a little April and May weather soon.

  6. January 21, 2011 2:03 am

    You are doing the right thing Michelle – there will be other races. We’ll miss you!

  7. January 21, 2011 2:27 am

    Oh my gosh, Michelle, I wondered what was going on with your mom. Now I see. What a challenging situation. You are doing an amazing job. I’m sending you lots of positive vibes for dealing with this. I hope you get the “help” situation sorted out soon. Enjoy your runs and local races and you will do 50Ks and DM meetups when the time is right. You are such a good daughter for seeing what you need to do now. Best wishes, Sheila

  8. January 21, 2011 3:44 pm

    You’re a good daughter. Running-wise, I think you should just let it come to you when and how it will, not worry about long stuff (like 50Ks). Let it be a release and enjoy the views you see along the way.

  9. January 21, 2011 4:25 pm

    You’re doing the right thing. Although your running time is important, your mom is what’s most important right now, and spending time with her and making sure she’s happy is #1 right now.

  10. January 24, 2011 2:27 am

    I am so sorry to hear about your mom! And I understand your disappointment. I’m sure you’ve been told this, but please check out The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s patient services, as well as the American Cancer Society ( or 1-800-ACS-2345). They have amazing services that can help. I know if you call ACS, they can help you determine which of their services can help the most. Much love to you!

  11. January 25, 2011 2:57 pm

    M, sending all my love and best wishes to you and your mom. Thinking of you. Lots of love. xoxo

  12. January 26, 2011 10:49 pm

    Michelle, I know how you are feeling regarding wanting your mom to be a mom. My mother has Alzheimer’s and stroke related arteriosclerosis. Fortunately for me, she has been able to afford to live in a memory care facility. It’s still really hard since I’m the one child who takes care of everything, even though there are 5 siblings. Yesterday when I visited her, I just wanted to cry at what she has become and the loss involved. It’s very stressful.

    Know that you are in my thoughts and prayers. You are a very special daughter.

  13. January 31, 2011 9:33 pm

    Sending you positive vibes. You should know that you are an amazing daughter. A lot of people couldn’t handle all those jobs.

  14. February 1, 2011 8:45 pm

    Michelle, you and your mom are in my thoughts!!!!!!!!! I’m so glad she has you to help her through this… I wish you lots of strength.

  15. Christopher Wilno permalink
    February 21, 2011 11:32 pm

    Prayers to Mom and to you. I have stood where you now stand and am available if you ever need to talk. You have a great attitude about all of this. I gain strength by knowing we really have no control. What is meant to be will be and whatever happens will come with blessings. I said it on Twitter but I am certain your Mom can hear you so talk to her often.

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