Listen to the Ali on the Run Show!
- September 19, 2018 by AliAli on the Run Show Episode 98: Mary Wittenberg, Former CEO of New York Road Runners & Virgin Sport
- September 17, 2018 by AliBaby on the Run: Week 34
- September 12, 2018 by AliAli on the Run Show Episode 97: Amy Cragg
- September 12, 2018 by AliBaby on the Run: Week 33
- September 10, 2018 by AliAli on the Run Show Episode 96: LIVE at NYRR RunnerCon with Jenny Simpson, Emma Coburn, & Peter Ciaccia
Thankful Things Thursday: Love
Maybe you thought I’d fled for a while and ditched this whole blogging thing. I thought about it, honestly. I took a few days off because I was busy before I left for Colorado. Then I was in Colorado and I refused to turn on my computer for the duration of the trip. Then I got back and I was busy again, and the thought of writing just seemed too daunting. Where to even begin?
And I’m sick.
I was sick before I left for my trip, I was sick while I was there and, somehow, I returned to New York even sicker than I was when I left. Crohn’s is the coolest.
I have many thoughts swirling in my brain, but today let’s return to the tried-and-true: It’s a multi-holiday-day and I came to celebrate.
It’s Thankful Things Thursday, and we all know what to do with that. We’ll proceed as normal along that happy brick road.
And, as the world keeps reminding us all — the NYC streets, in particular, are absolutely packed with delivery men hauling massive bouquets to lucky ladies around the borough — it’s also Valentine’s Day.
I’ve made it fairly clear before that I’m no huge fan of Valentine’s Day. The sentiment is nice, but social media has turned a day of love into a day of “post pictures of your flowers from your hubby because he’s totally the best!”
But I’m not against a day to celebrate and acknowledge love. I love love.
I’m thankful for love. In all its forms.
I’m thankful for my littlest Valentine.
Tyler has changed my world. He makes me want to be a more decent person. He makes me want to set a good example. And my god, he makes me smile.
I’m thankful for my most supportive Valentine. No one sets a bar higher than my dad, and no one makes me want to leap over that bar with aplomb and power quite like he does. Also, dad, will you do my taxes this year? We can talk about it. I’m very organized with my paperwork.
I’m thankful for my Momentine. That’s probably not a word. But my mom is always a good Valentine. Last year she sent me an entire shoebox filled with “granola bars.” I’ll take a box of Entenmann’s over Reese’s any day.
I’m thankful for my Galentines. (“Parks and Recreation” reference…I really wanted to use it and there’s really only one day a year when I can.) This weekend, I get to reunite with all my best college girls at my dear friend Lauren’s wedding. This wedding is going to be off-the-charts incredible because Lauren has fancy taste. I don’t even remember the last time we were all together and we’ll be all dressed up and there will be dancing. I’m also in the wedding, and even though Lauren has not explicitly given me permission to jazz hand walk my way down the aisle, I know that in her mind she will be OK with it.
I’m thankful for my work Valentines. I spend more time with these women than I do with Brian. We’ve all become quite close over the past year and they are remarkable people. They make me laugh, we’ve seen each other cry and they know not to ask too many questions when I’m flaring and they can’t find me at my desk. They are also the best dressers.
I’m thankful for my Valentine Valentine. Hi, Brian. How you doin’?
I’m thankful I survived the Colorado getaway.
There were several times throughout the trip when I thought I may not make it out alive. The plane ride out, for example, was a rough go. The poor aisle seat girl finally asked if I wanted to switch with her, granting me easier access to the bathroom. She was nice. I felt badly.
Then there was that time during day three of the trip when Brian convinced me it would be “fun” to do some extreme adventuring. “Fun” by his definition meant taking off my skis and hiking up Aspen’s Highland Bowl. Apparently this is a thing people do. For “fun.”
I didn’t think it was very fun.
I thought hiking — while wearing ski boots and 400 layers of Dry Fit and carrying my skis and poles — was a dumb idea.
An even dumber idea was “dropping in” to the “bowl” and skiing down the side of the mountain. Into trees. And through moguls. And basically just doing really dumb shit.
I’m thankful for my ski helmet. Best purchase of the trip. I skied directly into two trees on my way down the Highland Bowl. Oops. (Breathe, Momentine. You know this all turned out OK…I’m here typing, aren’t I?)
I’m thankful for hot things, like chocolate and tubs. I can’t think of a better way to end a day on the slopes than with whipped-cream-topped hot chocolate and a long soak in a hot tub. I took advantage of both things every day while in Colorado.
I’m thankful for SoulCycle. I hate that I love it. But I do. I love the loud music. I love being packed tightly into the room surrounded by sweaty people. I love the wacky choreographing and the arm sections.
There are plenty of things I disagree with when it comes to SoulCycle (like, uh, the price and the politics). But it’s the only place I’ve found that even remotely makes me forget I’m not running.
Because yeah. I’m not running. I don’t even remember the last time I ran. And I’m sad about it. I really miss it. I don’t feel my best without it. No amount of spinning can completely supplement my running void. SoulCycle comes closest, but it’s no Reservoir. It’s no Bridle Path. It’s not even a treadmill.
Normally when I experience a flare-up, I try to power through. I try to run. I have to make a ton of stops and it’s never comfortable, convenient or particularly fun. In fact it’s really, really hard. But I always did it because I felt like I could. Because I felt like I should.
This time, I don’t feel that way.
I am just not up for the defeat of stopping at every Starbucks from here to Central Park. I can’t handle the mental anxiety trying to run will inevitably cause, and I’m not training for anything so I don’t feel the need to attempt to get out there.
It sucks, though. I used to feel strong enough to run during flare-ups. This time I don’t.
But I’ll come full circle. I’ll run again eventually.
And until then, I’ll spin when I can, I’ll rest when I should and I’ll do my best not to wallow. Promise.
I’m thankful for everything I can still do when I’m sick. I had a little meltdown the night before the trip because I felt so sick and the antibiotics Dr. Hotness gave me weren’t working at all. I called my mom and told her I didn’t even want to go.
I didn’t feel great while I was away. The mornings were bad, the night sweats came back and there were times on the mountain when I got slightly panicky. Overall, though, I got in plenty of ski time and that fresh Colorado air was good for my body, mind, soul and lungs.
I’ll stop being gushy now.
Remember Gushers? That snack that exploded when you chewed it? I never tried them. Cool story.
I hope you’re loving love today. Give many hugs and kisses to your friends, family members, pets and maybe even some total strangers.
Maybe not total strangers.
Happy Valentine’s Day. I love you.
NOW BE THANKFUL AND LOVEY: What are you thankful for today? Your Valentine? Your Galentine? Your puppy? Heart-shaped boxes of chocolate? Cadbury Mini Eggs?