Monday, August 1, 2011

Dear MOPS, I love you!

 On March 29th, 2007 I nervously laid on an operating table as my doctor said, "It won't hurt, but it is going to feel like an elephant is sitting on your chest."  A few minutes later that elephant sat down and I heard the most glorious sound; my son screaming his head off. 
The first moments of fatherhood for Kevin.

To say things did not go as planned would be an understatement.  I did not plan to ride to the hospital alone in the back of an ambulance.  I did not plan to have an emergency induction.  I did plan to have an epidural after the first contraction and luckily that did happen (and yes I am a giant wuss and no I don't feel like I missed out on anything by skipping the pains of labor!).  I didn't plan to push for THREE hours only to have my son shoved back into me.  I didn't plan on having an emergency C-section.  And most of all I didn't plan to hold my son and feel absolutely nothing.

Motherhood did not come easily for me.  Those first few weeks were more than rough.  I felt like a failure because I couldn't deliver my son (I know it is ridiculous but I really had to work through that).  That child I had felt so close to when I was pregnant seemed like a stranger to me. . .a mean stranger who had tortured my insides only to come out and start torturing my outsides (nipples specifically).  I was in pain from the c-section, exhausted from lack of sleep, and riding on a crazy postpartum hormone roller coaster.  People would ask, "Don't you just love being a mom?  Isn't it the greatest thing in the world?"  I would choke back the tears and say "oh yes I just love it!"  I didn't dare say what I was really thinking.  "Are you kidding me?!  Please tell me how leaking constantly (from everywhere) can be enjoyable.  Yes, I love not sleeping, being thrown up on, and cracked nipples are my absolute favorite!  The joys are never ending!!!"  I secretly cried a lot and would put on a big fake smile during the rare occasions I ventured out.

As the weeks turned to months I did fall madly in love with that beautiful baby boy and things were becoming easier.  But I felt lost at times and it was very lonely to be home alone all day.  Something was missing from my life and I did not know how to fix it.  Thankfully, God was looking out for me and He lead to me MOPS through a friend's invitation.

I can't even begin to explain what MOPS has done for me.  I got connected with other women, I made friends, I got advice, and I had a lot of fun.  I don't even think these women know how much they have touched my life and helped me survive motherhood.  Moms need other moms!  I often say that the two things that saved my life as a mom were MOPS and running.  And this weekend I got to do both!  Bonus!

The steering team went on a weekend retreat in the mountains.  Beautiful scenery, great company, lots of laughs, no kids(!), and of course I ran!  I even had a running buddy the first day (thank you Sarah Babb).  Here are some pictures of the beautiful course we ran.  Prepare to be jealous of the absolute beauty of Keystone, CO (elevation 9100 feet).
Our run started from the house (not a bad view).  Two things about running in the mountains: the air is thinner and even in July the mornings are FREEZING cold.  We froze our tushies off!
Over the river and through the woods.  
The path we took went right by this river.  Beautiful!  I wisely opted not to do an open water swim here.
Starting to get a little hilly.  Thin, cold mountain air + hills= lung torture.  I think Sarah started glaring at me at this point.  Just kidding!

Just another shot of the river.
My legs might have been dying but the view was worth it!  Love those 14ers (and for the record I am just guessing those are 14ers)!

We ran around this lake and then headed back to the house.  Over three miles of scenic beauty.  I did two loops the first day and one loop the second.

What a view!!!  The snow on the mountains is so beautiful to look at (and by that I mean I love that is far away from me!).
Posing by the lake.  Sarah on the left, Darla in the middle, and Joanna on the right.


  1. YEA! I made the blog :) Thanks again for pushing me to keep going (even if you didn't know you were pushing me...just being there was the push I needed!!) I hope we can do it again next year!!

  2. Oh yeah, you totally made the blog! You are famous with all 2 people that read it! Ha! You were awesome and I can't believe how much time you took off your run. I mapped it again and I think it was closer to 3.2 miles but that still puts you in at under 10 min. miles! And if I don't go back to work then we will totally do it again next year and hopefully get some of those slackers to go with us!