Today is the first day of school for my kids. My amazing Nora is going to be a senior (how did that happen?!) and Joe is going to be a sophomore (seriously, how did that happen?! She is six! Or seven maybe. And he cannot possibly be in his second year of high school. Sigh. I blinked, they grew.)
A few weeks ago I was really worried about how Joe would do with all the sitting, carrying his books, and other normal challenges of high school because of his back surgery. It was really tough immediately following the surgery and he was in SO.MUCH.PAIN. It just didn't seem possible that he would be recovered enough to be able to handle school. But, I'm tell you, the kid is amazing, and he is doing great. He hardly ever has anything but the smallest twinges of pain. He can sit for long periods of time, walk and hike, and only has a few restrictions from the doctor: no lifting over 25 lbs, no running, twisting, or bending at the waist.
So yesterday, we decided to have a little mini-trip to celebrate the last breath of summer. First, we hit a thrift store that was having a half-off sale (early in the morning and it was still a zoo it was so crowded!) and I made out like a bandit! I got a new (to me) fancy raincoat, size 18 and it fit! (To contrast, I once wore a size 32.) I think the raincoat was an exception because what I fit into pretty consistently are 2x's, which are usually size 22-24. Still, I am thrilled, and I made myself a promise, "one in, one out." That is, for every new garment you get, you have to get rid of one that doesn't fit well, or makes you look frumpy, or that you would be embarrassed if a hunky guy saw you wearing it at the store.
After we brought home the booty, we packed up some healthy snacks (for the kids; I had my juice) and headed up the scenic Columbia River gorge to go hike the waterfalls. Now, 117 lbs ago, the only hiking I did was from the couch to the fridge. The effort of daily living was taxing enough; I was exhausted all the time. If you asked me then, would you like to go hike some waterfalls? It would have come out, would you like to walk on nails through heavy wet sand while breathing through a coffee stirrer? because it was so painful for my feet to just walk around and I was sucking wind just from one flight of stairs or any physical activity.
So we just didn't go many places, and when we did, I would just watch while everyone did fun stuff. (And get a snack from the food cart while no one could see me!) If I hadn't given myself the gift of discipline in my eating, I would have missed this:
or the proud-of-mom looks on my kids faces when I made it to the top of not one but two half-mile, steep up-hill hikes:
It was a very good day. My thighs felt like lime jello by the time I got down from Waheena Falls and the more famous Multnomah Falls, but it was the best kind of exhaustion. I felt like a contestant on "The Biggest Loser" who just finished one of those awful challenges. I felt like I was getting out and living my life, not sitting on a sofa watching other people have a life on tv.
The best part was that Dave called me, right as I was about to summit the first waterfall. I got to say, "Guess where I am?!" and he was so excited for me and said he wishes he could be joining me. He's doing great and we are both getting excited for the International Day of Juice Feasting which is next Sunday, so put it on your calendars! He said he saw my video, and I was right, he was tickled that the candle I found was a Jewish candle. Dave believes that whatever your religious tradition, if it boils down to honoring God, or the Living Life Force, it's all good. He loved so much, our candlelight vigil, and all the videos that people have made for him. Tresa pulls them up for him on her computer so he can experience the overwhelming tide of love and support that is rolling his way. (She is the best.friend.ever! to him, I swear. She is taking care of him, his business details, the International Day of Juice Feasting, everything. Beauty, Elegance, and Grace, indeed. Wrapped in a very caring soul.)
What Day I'm On: 33 out of 40, one week to go!
How's it going? I finally stopped playing Beat the Clock to get to the bathroom, which is great because hiking in the Columbia Gorge Scenic Wildlife Area would not have been fun while trying to simultaneously "clench and pray." lol
My juice was WONDERFUL yesterday. I added more fruit knowing that we would be hiking and my blood sugar would be fine with the exercise. So I had some lovely fresh squeezed o.j. and my green juice had apples and pears as well as chard and celery. So yummy! It felt like such a treat after hating my juice earlier in the weekend.
I have just one week left till I start the process of breaking the fast. It is good timing, because my life gets REALLY busy when school starts. Joe's doing community theatre, which means I'll be a slave to the sweat shop making costumes (which I love. We moms really do lovingly call the Costume Department the Sweat Shop. Hey, I go in there in the morning, measure 12 boys, and cut and sew twelve sparkly vests before I go home that day, that's a Sweat Shop!) Nora's captain of the dance team, and does volunteer work at the hospital, and has a job, and really challenging classes because she is an uber-smarty. What she doesn't have is a license, so I still drive both of them everywhere.
I still have my J-O-B, and I need to get in my 1hr of exercise/day, take care of mom's foot and we all have to clean just enough that we don't live like wolverines and the kids demand that they have groceries occasionally, which is just so unreasonable, but what's a mother to do? So my eating plan goes back to VERY simple: green smoothies, fruit, blended soups and salads and avocados and more elaborate recipes when I have time. Load up the dehydrator whenever I can. (All this after the fast is completely broken, which takes an extra week past the 40 days.)
It's a busy life, but it's my busy life and I love it. I only have my kids for a few more years (Nora only one! Ack!) and who knows how long I'll have my parents? So I cherish these days, and remember to breathe and squeeze out some time to put myself and my needs on the list, which I am DETERMINED to do, otherwise I can't do the rest of it without going psycho.
Now I'm going to make my juice and dream of waterfalls and lush green forests...