This is way outside my comfort zone, but I don’t care.
I will beg, I will grovel and I will plead with each and every one of you google image search of “OKLAHOMA TORNADO” and tell me that you can stand by and do nothing. Tell me that you are unmoved by the devastation. Tell me that you can put yourself in the place of the parents waiting to hear your child’s name read off as one of the survivors and not break down in tears for the ones who’s names are not called.
If you can tell me that this doesn’t affect you, that it doesn’t tear your heart to pieces then stop reading now.
But if you’re like me, and your heart is breaking and you can’t stop the tears from falling, then join me.
It’s not much, but my husband and I are joining forces with members of the Brothers of the Tobacco League, namely @Jaelipp to help.
From @Jaelipp’s Instagram:
A group of BOTL and I started a gift card collection with plans of hand delivering them directly to the families affected by the storms in North Texas. Last night we received word from the Elementary School and Church that we were dealing with urging us to divert all donations to Moore OK. That phone call spoke volumes as to the devastation that the people of Moore Ok have encountered. If anyone would like to pitch in we are looking for gift cards to Walmart, Home Depot, and Kroger Stores to help lift the spirits and supply these families with daily essentials to get them through these rough times. If we can spend $5-$30+ on a single cigar and turn it to ash… The least we can do is help out our own in this time of need.
Thanks in advance,
Jaelipp Please send gift cards to:
5009 Rock River Dr.
Fort Worth, Texas 76103
Also, my husband has generously decided to auction off two things he loves dearly. His hand forged keychain, made by the one and only Jesse James of West Coast Choppers Fame and recently Austin Speed Shop, and his Austin Speed Shop Garage Shirt signed by the shop crew. This shirt is a 2XL and has NEVER been worn!
Go to Johnny’s Instagram page and make a bid. To sweeten the pot, I’m giving up my keychain too- so go to http://instagram.com/johnnymedau and bid.
Let’s get this out of the way first! I am an ambassador for Kindrunner.com. From here on out, as long as they keep me, I will be involved with campaigns that will include product reviews and giveaways provided by kindrunner. You can rest assured that ALL opinions expressed are mine. I value your readership and that can only continue if I have your 100% trust! I promise to be truthful and honest with you in all my posts as I always have been.
I read this post from Road Runner Girl’s Mindy Bobe and immediately knew this was a movement I NEEDED to be involved with, I
begged, pleaded and grovelled with contacted kindrunner to allow me to help spread the word about this amazing movement! To my absolute pleasure, the agreed and now I get to share this incredible idea with you!
Kindrunner.com is set to launch on June 1st. They are going to be game changers in the running community! In less than 2 weeks socially and ecologically savvy runner will have a place to “embrace sustainable e-commerce. We call it Kindness Commerce!”
Kindrunner.com isn’t just a site where you can buy top of the line running shoes. You can earn credit toward new shoes by sending them your old ones! And to top that off- shipping both ways is FREE to you!!! Kindrunner also takes back all of the packaging materials and accepts your old shoes in order to reduce the impact on the environment that the running community can have. All these things are properly recycled so they don’t end up in a landfill. Did you know that scientists tell us that it can take nearly 100 years for a pair of running shoes to biodegrade to a point where they become unrecognizable?!?!?! That’s just crazy! And if you’re an avid runner you already know that many of the shoes we can’t run in anymore still look and feel brand new, but if we continue to run in them we’re practically begging for injury. But that doesn’t make your old running shoes useless. Box them up and send them to Kindrunner. Not only will you get credit toward a new pair of shoes, but your old ones will be given to one of Kindrunner’s Donation Partners including Soles4Souls which ensure they go to people with the greatest need.
With 4 kids it’s not always easy or convenient to pack them up and bring them to my local running store. Between Kindrunner.com’s experts and product reviews you’re sure to find a shoe that works for you because you will also have access to professional running advice from experienced staff that will help you not only find the right shoe at the right price but offer sound running advice for injury prevention.
Kindrunner hasn’t even officially launched but they want you to get excited NOW! They’re giving away running shoes! Go to www.kindrunner.com enter your email address and you will be entered to win running shoes for a YEAR!!!
Also, for every 500 likes they get on www.facebook.com/kindrunner they’ll give away a pair of shoes to a liker and their running partner (as long as the partner likes them too)
I hope you’ll join me in supporting Kindrunner!
What do you do with your old running shoes? Donate them? Trash them? Pile them in the corner of the closet?
Several month ago I was asked to help spread the word about the 2013 Houston Walk to End Lupus Now & 5K Run. Of course I said I’d do my best and in turn they offered to let me run. How can you EVER turn that down??
Race Sunday was fast approaching and the Friday before my little man asked if he could run with me. This particular race didn’t charge for the youngins to run so it was not even a question. Of course! It would be just us going. I’m proud to call him a mama’s boy. He loves doing stuff with all of us, but he really thrives on some good one on one time with each of us! Remember Monster Jam?!?!?! Yeah….I’m happy to have a mama’s boy!
We got up early Sunday morning and got ready to head out. I warmed him up a little bacon wrapped egg, cheese, potato loaf and we hit the road. A quick stop for some drinks, OJ for him and a little caffeine for me and we were on our way!
It was a little chilly downtown but we found a tent with some fresh coffee and we were set.
I don’t know why but I always have to tinkle a lot before I run, maybe it’s nerves? We got in line for the mere 4 port-a-potties on site (seriously??? 4??? That’s legitimately my ONLY complaint about the race!) The line was hella long and we were actually STILL in line at 7 when we heard the pop of the gun to start the race. We abandoned our coffee at the curb (sorry City of Houston, but we couldn’t find a trash can either!) and started running to the course! We just sorta filed in to the runners and crossed the start line. I couldn’t stop smiling. We were actually running a race together! His very first 5k and like his crazy mama, he has had no real training. Granted, he’s young and full of energy anyway, but I’ve found that races are different creatures. They aren’t just physical acts of one foot in front of the other, they’re tests of mind over body and heart over all! And let me tell you what, my boy has the heart of a champion!!!
I had some tech issues, my Garmin refused to find our location and I didn’t get Runtastic started in time, but I figured we had my chip so we’ll just use their time.
The course was nice enough, just a little out and back, over a bridge, nice ascent and descent, started and ended close to Minute Maid park.
We started off at a nice pace- I don’t know what that was, but we were moving well and able to chat a little. I explained to him how the water station would work and that you can slow to a walk to grab your cup, but if you don’t pick up the pace right away, you should move to let other runners by.
He slowed to a walk toward the beginning and I asked him if he was ok, his face was nice and red, glowing, and he said he was good. I think he was slowing for me, but I was so full of energy I didn’t need to walk at all. Every once in awhile he’d look up and tell me he loved me and I just smiled and told him I loved him too!
We came to the water station and he cruised through like he’s done it a million times.
We came down the bridge and were cheered on by the walkers who started after us. I told him that we should always start off steady and save some strength for the end so you can finish strong. I could see the finish line, there was only a few blocks to go, we came around the final corner, I looked at him and said, “Hey, are you ready?” he shook his head, “LET’S GO!!!” and we did! We hauled ass over the last part of the course and crossed the finish line like a boss! Neither one of us were even breathing hard and we were flying!!! I am so proud of him!
We didn’t hang around for the after party, I was pretty much ready for a nap and I wanted to let him play. On the way home we stopped for donuts and kolaches for everyone waiting at home.
I can’t wait to run again with him! Now if only I can get his big sisters to run too…..
A few months ago a company called NeoCell reached out to me and offered to let me try one of their products, Collagen Sport Ultimate Recovery Complex. I read the line “Designed for recovery and pain relief after exercise” and I immediately said YES, I’d love to try it!
Please note: NeoCell sent this product to me free of charge and under no obligation to write a positive review. All opinions are my own as they always will be!
It came at the perfect time as I was in the height of marathon training and not only was pounding out the miles, but they were starting to pound back! Then I read that this was gluten free, lactose free, and free of synthetic sugars I was sold! Send me the chocolate! Belgian Chocolate to be exact.
I have to say, I was shocked when the package arrived. I expected a sample size of maybe a few servings, NOT a regular retail size tub!!! Plus one already! Can you see that-23.8ounces, who does that??? NeoCell certainly isn’t stingy with their blog reviewers!! I love that!
Before I start doting on how amazing this stuff is, let me give you a bit of info from the company itself.
NeoCell’s national educator Tim Mount was recently interviewed on Collagen Sport. This is what he had to say:
1. Why is NeoCell important to today’s health and fitness conscious consumer? NeoCell is a leading anti-aging, exercise and joint recover company that specializes in vital collagen health. Collagen is important because after the age of 25 years old our collagen production declines, leading to the aging process. Since collagen is the main protein in the body that gives our tissues structure – such as skin, ligaments, tendons, bones, cartilage, and blood vessels – the loss of collagen affects overall health and wellness. For fitness enthusiasts a weakened collagen matrix in the body can lead to unstable joints and joint injuries, plus a decline in cardiovascular functioning. For health conscious consumers a drop in collagen can result in the wrinkling of the skin, thinning of the hair and nails, prolapsed of organs, and an overall drop in energy and mobility.2. Describe The Collagen Sport Ultimate Recovery – 1.5 lb Chocolate Supplement in a nutshell.NeoCell’s Collagen Sport product is much more than a simple protein powder, it is a complete exercise recovery formula. Most protein shakes only contain a general protein source that aids in muscle recovery. However, Collagen Sport supports total body recovery by including 15 grams of collagen for joint strength in addition to a 15 grams of a high quality whey isolate for muscular development. We don’t stop there, we add in additional glutamine and BCAAs, plus a complete multivitamin/multimineral complex (including electrolytes). Finally, we are a natural health company so there are no artificial ingredients, no sugars because we sweeten with xylitol, and no lactose or gluten. There simply isn’t a more complete, premium recovery formula on the market.3. How can people benefit from using this product? A common issue in the fitness world is joint injuries or pain. That is because most people only supporting muscular strength gains without simultaneously building their connective tissue to handle the increased force applied to joints by larger muscles. Strong muscles with weak joint and connective tissues result in injuries. By taking NeoCell’s Collagen Sport a person will support both connective tissues and muscular development and guard against injury and pain. We have a great testimonial from Gold Medalist Kayla Harrison about her personal story recovering from a major knee injury weeks before the Olympics by only using Collagen Sport. See4. What advice can you provide for people that are interested in applying this product to their lifestyle? I am a Clinical Nutritionist and teach Sports Nutrition at the college level. I constantly preach to my students that a good post-workout shake is far and away the most important supplements an athlete or fitness enthusiast can take. It would be difficult to piecemeal together a number of different supplements to get everything NeoCell’s Collagen Sport provides in one convenient powder. Simply mix one scoop in a shaker cup within 1 hour after a workout in either almond milk or water and enjoy all the delicious benefits!5. Feel free to add anything else our readers would like to know. For additional benefits or to assist the body with injury healing any of our best-selling collagen products can be taken in addition to Collagen Sport. Collagen supplements affect the whole body, so in addition to joint and bone strength, they will get the added benefit of smoother, younger looking skin and thicker hair.
You may have noticed I’ve not been posting a whole lot lately. A tweet here and there and maybe an Instagram pic. My mind has been processing some recent events and I’m convinced that getting it all out here will help me close the book on this chapter so I can get on with the rest of my book of life.
This is a brain dump post. I make no apology. It’s a mess. It might not make sense. But I had to just get it out.
You’ve been warned!
Saturday May 4th~! Being a Star Wars nerd this is possibly one of my favorite silly days. I commandeered lil J’s Darth Vader coffee mug.
It was a great day! Hanging out with the kids, watching TV, just being us.
Fast forward to the end of the night. Got the littles into bed and J and I crawled into our own. After a few minutes of him tossing and turning he decided that perhaps a cigar on the back porch would be a better use of time. I joined him outside and we chatted and played on our phones mindlessly scrolling through social media feeds.
Then I heard something. What was it? Sounded like the baby crying. We both paused and looked around in the dark. I heard it again, but louder. It was sobbing. Coming from down below. I got up and looked over the rail and saw her, a girl, stumbling down the sidewalk. I hate to say this, but normally I probably would have just kept to myself and minded my own business, but it was after 1am and I felt compelled to ask her if she was ok. I think I half expected her to just say no and keep on hobbling down the street, but that’s not what happened at all. When I called down and asked if she was ok, she paused, looked up at me with eyes nearly swollen shut, face glistening with tears and blood pouring out of her nose and said, “No, I’m not ok.” I felt paralyzed, what do I do? At least I thought I felt paralyzed. J said that before he could process what was just said, I had bolted out the door, Mace, phone and keys in hand, down the stairs around the building and through the fence to get to this girl. I’m not sure how I even managed to squeeze through the bars of the fence. I wrapped my arms around her and she clung to me as if her very life depended on it. We would find out later that indeed it did. But we’ll come to that a little later. I just held her close to me and she buried her face into my chest crying. She told me that she just didn’t want to play video games anymore. She just wanted to go home and he got mad and started hitting her. I’m not sure if they got in the car together and she jumped out or if she just took off on foot once she was able to get away from him. I’m not even sure it mattered. Then or now. A car pulled up beside us and asked if we needed help. I feel bad now, as I realized after the fact that the man was just being a good samaritan and I verbally attacked him as if he were the perpetrator. I believe at this point J had made it down the stairs and was on the inside of the fence. I held the girl tightly and walked her toward the opening in the fence.
I believe my mother bear instinct was in full effect. Another vehicle pulled up to us as we neared the fence. A young man stepped out of the car and began to come toward us. I made sure I was between this guy and the crying girl. He started talking to her, telling her he was sorry, he didn’t mean it, come on get in the car, I love you…I may have shoved her through the gate, I don’t remember. I do remember screaming at him to get away, leave, she’s not going anywhere with you. J told me later that he was trying to coerce the guy to come through the gate ( J couldn’t get through the space we squeezed through. I’m sure if he could have, the boy wouldn’t have been “able” to drive away!!!) by telling him we could all sit and talk. But that if he was able to get him to come through the fence he would have pinned him down until police to get to us. The young man must have figured it wasn’t a good idea to come “talk” with us, and he made an over dramatic exit. Very Romeo and Juliet – esque. He waved his arms out to the sides and professed his undying love and said things like, “I can’t live without you, it has to end tonight.” And from what I remember he got in his car and drove away. The girl cried that he had threatened to kill himself before and that’s why she stayed with him. She didn’t want to be the cause of anyone hurting themselves.
The girl sobbed into me as I dialed 911. I sat her down on the stairs in front of the building while we waited for the police and EMTs. My oldest daughter brought down a glass of water and a wet rag so we could clean up the girl’s face. Her face was so swollen that I mistakenly told dispatch I thought she might be Asian. My daughter tried to comfort the girl as well. Being nearly the same age, it seemed helpful to have her there offering words of support. My daughter is wise beyond her years and as her nana would say, she has an “old soul” she just seems to have a deeper understanding of the trials of the heart than your average teenager. Somewhere along the line the girl gave J her mom’s phone number and he began frantically trying to contact her with no luck. He must have tried a hundred times. I told the girl that no matter what, she needed to tell the police the truth even if it’s bad.
The police finally arrived and I’m so thankful they sent a female officer. She was blunt and didn’t act super sympathetic. But she was effective and kind. She questioned the girl and turned her over to the EMTs. The officer then began to question me. She kind of looked at me funny when I couldn’t answer simple questions. No, I don’t know the girl’s last name, no I don’t know how old she is, no I don’t know the boyfriend’s name, no I don’t know where they lived, I’ve seen his car around before but I couldn’t identify the boy again if he was standing in front of me. No, no, no. I’m sorry, I was solely focused on getting this girl to safety and keeping him away from her. Officer, I want to help you, but I really just don’t know what else I can tell you….. She thanked me and the backup officer expressed his wish that karma come full circle on the boyfriend so they wouldn’t have to. Probably not the most professional thing he could have said, but my heart agreed in silent sadness.
J, Big S and I stayed up for a while afterward talking about what had happened. Big S expressed that her initial response to all the noise- Me running out of the apartment slamming doors- was that maybe J and I had gotten into a huge fight. She was relieved that wasn’t the case, but equally upset at the situation at hand.
J and I had discussed and I had insisted that when they let the girl out of the hospital she could stay with us until…until what?!?!?! All I knew is in the moment, I felt like I had to protect this girl as if she was my own.
I left early Sunday morning with lil J. We were running his first 5k. That’s worthy of it’s own post!
J had finally gotten in touch with the girl’s parents. They agreed to keep in contact with each other until they could figure out what to do. We got a call Sunday evening. The parents were able to get a plane ticket for her Monday morning. I hesitated slightly, but agreed that the girl could stay with us Sunday night. I called my boss and told her the craziest “I’ll be late to work” story I’ve ever told. We made sure the girl was able to shower, and I got her something to eat then we got her bloodstained clothes washed. We offered to let her sleep in the girls’ bedroom, but she chose the couch.
Monday morning came and after getting Lil P to school we headed to the airport. She was so quiet. I tried to make her laugh. I didn’t want her to feel like she had to have a heavy conversation. She didn’t need to tell me anything. I just wanted her to feel safe. I walked her to security and because she had no ID they had to do additional screening and not being a ticketed passenger, I couldn’t go any further with her. I hugged her and asked that she just let us know she got there ok. She thanked me and hugged me right back. I kissed her head and watched her walk away with the officer. I slipped out of sight and started to cry. I prayed that she didn’t decide to skip the flight and go back to the boyfriend. I prayed that she got on the plane, that she made her connecting flight, and I prayed that she could get through this difficult time.
Back at work I busied myself through the day. I don’t remember much of what I did. Just hoping that J would text me and tell me that he’d talked to the parents and that she’d made it home safe. That she was wrapped in her mom’s arms. The day was kind of a blur of going through the work day motions. I couldn’t wait to get out and love on my own babies.
Finally J got news that she’d made it home. I felt relief. But I still felt sad for her. That’s a lot to deal with.
Later J was told that the boyfriend had indeed chosen to take his own life. When he told me, I was overcome with emotion. Was I glad he killed himself?? No, but I’m glad he can never hurt her or anyone else again. I was angry. Angry that he would never be held publicly accountable for what he did. I was at peace that his judgment before God will come before anymore violence or hatred or sin can be committed either by this boy or against him. I was sad. Sad that when this girl finds out, she will probably feel like it’s her fault.
I think he was a coward and a bully.
And the what ifs started to flow.
What if it was my daughter- would someone have the courage to step in?
What if no one helped her-and I lost my baby girl?
What if we hadn’t gotten up that night-
What if she’d wanted to get in the car with him- my heart tells me the answer to this….she very likely might have not made it through the night. Her mom may have never gotten to hold her baby girl again. We might have been sending a body home rather than her mama’s baby.
It’s been over a week, and I still get very emotional thinking about the what ifs.
If I’ve learned nothing else….
God calls on us when he needs to test us.
You never know if your actions could quite literally save a life.
I believe that God led me to save her from evil.
When you hear the sobbing in the dark
What will you do???
I guess I’ve kinda got a lot to say and I wasn’t really certain how to approach getting it all out there so forgive me if this is rambling, blundering and altogether makes no sense.
I’m in that place again where life seems sporadically out of control. There are days where I’m uber productive and feel like I can take on the world and then the next it feels like I’ve slammed 90mph into a brick wall. The kind of day that leaves you feeling defeated and hopeless. The positive thing is that the good days outnumber the bad so it’s easier for me to stop, refocus and put things quickly back into perspective. This ties into a number of things that I’ve been dealing with lately…
In case this is the first post of mine you’ve ever read, I ran a marathon! I trained for a year for it. Battling through 2 bouts of a fractured foot and countless life interruptions. Not all interruptions are bad mind you, I’m just being real. Some of those interruptions were my own-sabotaging myself. That’s just truth. Sometime I just let myself make excuses. For the most part though, I trained diligently, mindfully and honestly. I had made a commitment to do this and I had to see it through.
Well, now that the marathon is over I don’t have a major goal. And honestly I’m having a really difficult time motivating myself to accomplish the little goals I’ve set for myself. I can sit here and make excuses about being too tired, and too busy and too this and too that and whether I believe these excuses or not, the fact is, I know what I NEED to be doing to make myself feel better, I know that in order to get the results that I want there are things I must do, but I’m just not doing them. I’m.Just.Not. Now comes the hard part…WHY? I could probably write a novel filled with excuse upon excuse about how unfair life is and how hard it is….but that isn’t going to cut it for y’all, or my NF family, or for ME!!! Besides, y’all know I am fully capable of DOING ALL THE THINGS!!! I mean for a long time I was getting my workout on at 3:30-4am, working a full time job, taking care of my family and home and still feeling in control and not frazzled.
I have been bouncing around the idea that this could be a sort of post race depression. PRD- where you have this “holy shitballs amazing” goal, you reach it then after the high of it wears off you kind of feel empty.
The funny thing is that I’m letting myself feel all these intense feelings, happy, accomplished, defeated, sad, depressed, angry, empty etc. because I KNOW it’s temporary, but I’m having trouble getting past it. Marathon training consumed my life- and it’s kinda like, ok yeah I did that, I’m pretty beast..now what do I do?
Do I need to find another ridiculous goal that’s just slightly out of reach? Do I need to ease back into general fitnessy things? Do I let myself take some more down time to let my brain back on track? I don’t know, but this spinning my wheels is driving me nuts so something’s gotta give. Perhaps what I truly need is to take emotion out of the equation and just fucking get shit done.
Maybe that’s it. I’m open to suggestion though. Feel free to share if you’ve experienced this and how you got past it.
If you’ve gotten this far, thanks for reading, and thank you for supporting me!