Jon and I shipped Maria and Mario up to Mama Ionno’s house on Friday last week in order for us to celebrate our 8th wedding anniversary. We celebrated with Mitchell’s steak and lobster and a trip to the bike store to gather some last-minute items for my bike race on Saturday morning. We got home at 7:30 pm and I was in bed by 9. Poor Jon – he is such a trooper with these escapades.
I woke up at 5:45 and got ready for the 100 mile bike race called the Pelotonia (www.pelotonia.org/ride).
The Pelotonia is an annual bike race wherein riders can ride 23 miles, 43 miles, 100 miles, or 180 miles in support of cancer research. There are respective cash goals you have to meet based on the number of miles you ride. The 100 mile route runs from Columbus to Athens. I got to the starting location at 6:15 am and we were off and riding at 7:30 am. I made the crazy choice to ride my mountain bike (with at least smaller tires than the big ol’ mountain bike tires but still nowhere near the small width of road tires) but I really didn’t hurt throughout the ride except in one ten-mile stretch from miles 82 to 92. I had not stopped at the 75 mile rest stop because I was feeling good and I thought there was a rest stop at mile 87. Unfortunately, there was no rest stop there 87 – it was moved to 92. Now, you’d think that 5 miles on a bike is nothing to overcome but when you are going up and down rolling hills, have not eaten any breakfast, and have the sun beaming on you, it feels like 1000 miles. I felt like I have felt when running a race – like time was at a complete standstill. I finally reached the rest stop at 92 and it was like walking through the gates of heaven. I chowed on a granola bars, fruit and pretzels. My body rebounded and pushed me through the last 15 miles with no aches and pains. I rode through the finish line to see Jon standing toward the side sopping wet (there was a massive downpour for my last 12 miles). It felt great to have my supporter so close.
When we got home, Jon pampered me (as all good hubbies should do). We laid around and fell asleep early. We were so excited about getting to sleep in since M&M were still with Mama Ionno. Yet, to my demise, I twisted and turned all night. It was as if someone kept shooting electrical waves through my body. I was restless. Finally, at 7:30 am, I got out of bed and decided to go for a run. Yeah, a run. I felt like Atalanta. I was one with the wind – unstoppable. It was unreal. I could have run for 100 miles that morning. My legs felt strong. My lungs felt awesome. Indescribable.
When I got home, I could have cleaned the entire house in 20 minutes. My body was just charged up ready for the next feat. Jon’s sole reaction consisted of these words: “You are a freak.” This “high” lasted until Tuesday when I completely crashed and could not keep my eyes open past 9 pm. And Wednesday and Thursday and Friday. It was wonderful while it lasted.
Fortunately, I was still on the high on Tuesday morning when Maria had her first day of Kindergarten. We woke up at 7 am and as soon as she woke up, she popped up out of bed and exclaimed “We go to get ready, mom – NOW!” She got dressed in record time and even brushed her hair after I asked her the very first time. I planned a big breakfast for her – waffles, cereal, eggs but her excitement would not allow her to sit down so she opted for a cereal bar instead. We sat on the porch for what was “forever” to Ri (ten minutes) waiting for Aunt Sarah to arrive and we all walked down to K together.
What mixed emotions that day. Walking into her classroom and seeing all the kids at the tables, eyes glued down at their desk or up at the new teacher. Worried, excited, scared. Some talking with others; some keeping to themselves. I found myself continuously asking kids that passed us what their names were and pushing Maria towards them stating “Maria, this is Joey. Maria, her name is Hailey.” I think back to it now and I see how obnoxious that is! Just let her move into it at her pace. But there is that pesky mama gene that just wants it all to at least “look” easy and simple and warm and friendly. Maria twirling around the wildflowers, laughing and loving life. Yeah, that ain’t what school was always like for me so it will not be for her either. She will come home sobbing one day and sad that some girl would not talk to her or some boy said something incredibly rude to her. I did the same to my mom and stepmom and dad when I was in school. Somehow they pulled me through and I will do the same with Ri. But, man, it is hard to think about. She has been sheltered for five years from all of this crazy stuff.
Mario, on the other hand, will likely have to be peeled off the walls once he hits Kindergarten. He is so hyper. He climbs anything. He runs everywhere. He screeches. His teacher is going to say his name way too many times during the day. IN seriousness, he is a hyper son-of-a-gun but he also can sit still when he wants to (or is required to) and can listen. It is just if he has the choice he would rather jump, climb, and run all around. He turns three in a week and he has been exhibiting those lovely age three temper tantrums for the last few months. They make you want to pack up a small bag and just go far away for a long time. He kicks and screams and yells at the top of his lungs. And will not stop. I left the other morning for a run and when he awoke and I was not there, Jon said he sat on the steps screaming hysterically for 20 minutes. Maria used to get mad by going to her room and not talking to us. Mario will never go that route. He knows that screaming is much more irritating and hard to ignore. I hope when he turns three next Saturday that there will be a miraculous shift in that behavior and when he does not get his way he will look up at me and whisper “Mom, that upsets me, may we talk about it?” Someday.