Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Long time, no blog

Wow, I can't believe it's been almost a month since my last post. I've been in a major, so-depressed-you-feel-like-sitting-around-with-your-mouth-open, funk. We've had a lot of major issues that have been going on for a long time, and I think I'm just plum out of optimism. I'm sure most people don't surf the internet looking for blogs that whine about their personal life, so I'll just give you a quick summary of the situation:

My husband was in the Montana Army National Guard for a little over four years as a combat medic. In June of 2010, while training for an upcoming deployment, he had a massive heat stroke due to a combination of dehydration and over-exertion. He spent three days in the hospital for a common complication from heat stroke known as rhabdomyolysis which causes muscle cells (in this case, the major leg muscles from running) to break down and flood the kidneys with toxins.

It was fully expected that he would be back to normal within a couple of weeks. His leg pain persisted for a couple of months. Then, in May of last year, he started to do P90x with me to get ready for an upcoming PT test and the leg pain returned along with the elevated CK levels that accompany rhabdomyolysis. We soon discovered that any physical exertion caused this reaction. He was told absolutely no exercise until this was resolved...only it hasn't resolved and has now progressed to the point where he is in pain all the time and can't stand for more than a few minutes or walk without a cane for more than a few feet. He was recently fitted for a wheelchair, but his VA doctor won't sign off on it (but that's a rant for another day). He was able to get a 10% disability rating through the VA (the rating explanation said it was 10% because it "didn't affect his daily life" - yeah, we're working on that) and we've been going from doctor to doctor ever since.

Long story slightly less long, he is in pain all the time and has a seemingly-deteriorating condition that three specialists and several doctors have no clue how to diagnose or treat. In addition to that, he was laid off from his job last August and hasn't been physically able to work for over a year. We hired a lawyer and applied for Social Security Disability, but just passed the 120 day mark with no word. Sigh. Loved one in pain + no money = STRESSFUL.

I don't mean to complain, I just wanted to give some context for when I talk about being stressed. Cody and I are generally optimistic people, and we're trying to look at things in the best possible light. Maybe we need to learn a life lesson from this. Maybe we will someday be able to help someone in a similar situation, etc., etc. But recently, I feel like I've just run out of optimism, and I'm really struggling to focus on the many positive things we have in our life.

One of the positive things in my life (aside from my faith and my family, of course)? Running! I've been clinging to my training plan like a life raft. Running is one of the few things that makes life feel normal and manageable. I can't fix any number of things that are stressing me, but I can stick to my plan and feel good about that. I am truly luck to have a spouse that "gets it." He knows how much running means to me and listens with endless patience when I rattle on about tempo runs and refueling, and doesn't bat an eye when I have to get up at 3:00 am to fit in a 10 mile interval run before work.

And just something to make you smile:

How do the non-runners in your life handle your training?