and.... breathe.

Today was the first day I was partially on my own in my new position. The joys of starting a new job, particularly one that is supposed to be "self-directed" and "field-based," and just ISN'T in the orientation phase. The hardest part of giving up my other position was knowing I would have to endure this special part of a new job. We all enjoyed a collective sigh of relief as we headed out this morning knowing all likelihood, I would be back to collect the short people from school within a reasonable time.

The last two weeks are a whirlwind of early mornings, rushed commutes, LONG commutes to nearly New Hampshire, late day pick ups, rushed meals, a sad white flag ending another go at the Vegan Challenge, tired children, bus stop tears, and a mom managing on a ridiculous amount of caffeine. It's true. These past two weeks alone took my pumpkin spiced latte count for the month of October from 2 to 9. 

We could not have gotten through without Steve being able to split the pick up duties with me. Kiki saved us from having to endure a complete and utter bus reintroduction situation with Caroline last week. Someone got a little too cozy with her early drop offs at the school gym. Everyone ate dinner. Everyone had clean clothes. Everyone was an allowable level of clean. That's a win.

Now. To just get through the "easy!" Halloween Party I somehow signed myself up to help with. I spent over an hour last night cutting and wrapping sensory boxes to be filled with scabs (crumbled potato chips), fingernails (dried pumpkin seeds), and brains (damp sponges I sliced and painstakingly SEWED into a brain shape).

the man with the red bandana

I ran the Red Bandana Run today at Boston College. It's been a goal and Beacon Street scared the bejesus out of me, but I did it. Our friend Marc got the same crew who ran the Corrib Run back in May back together for a little 5K round II. As an added bonus, I got to run alongside my baby cousin Kristen. Both of us were aiming to finish, with no expectation for time whatsoever though we each run about a 10 minute mile. I shaved some time off over the summer, but a hectic fall has cost me those gained seconds. We ran pace with each other the whole race, stopping once before the beacon incline to walk and once at the top because we couldn't feel our legs. I yelled to her "Lean into the hill, you can do this!" It may have been more for me. We met up with the kids on College Road and took them with us the remaining .3 to the finish. She gave up her strong finish to hold hands with my daughter and cross the finish line. Connor's little legs could run no more, so I scooped him onto my back and carried him over. It's an important race and not just because I conquered the beast that is Beacon street. I felt compelled to write and send the following to the family.

October 13, 2012

Welles Remy Crowther Charitable Trust
P.O. Box 780
Nyack, NY 10960-0780
Mr. and Mrs. Crowther and Family,
I’m not a runner. Last fall, my good friend Marc, BC 2000 and lax player, asked if I wanted to run the Red Bandana Run with him to honor his friend and teammate. Again, I’m not a runner, so I said that it sounded wonderful, but I’d never be able to do it. This past spring I trained for and ran a 5K with Marc. I continued to run over the summer with the intention of completing the Red Bandana Run this year. Today, I did just that and I know that I will continue to participate year after year.

I have long been aware of Welles’ story, years before ESPN aired their story. I think of him every year on September 11th and yet, I never met him. I’m not writing today just to thank you for this race, for the wonderful charitable work you do in honor of this exceptional young man, but to thank you for giving me a way to talk about the events that bright, sunny day in 2001 with my two young children. My daughter turned five this year. When she asked me why I was running another race, I told her that once upon a time there was a very brave boy who gave his own life to help others. I know that with each passing year she will become more aware and I will have to answer more difficult questions, questions that I know I will not be able to answer. I will always have Welles’ story to remind her that even in the face of the most terrible things, there are good people, strong in character and spirit who do the right thing and put others ahead of themselves. This year, we stopped our discussion at the assertion that you don’t have to have super powers to be a hero.
Much thanks… see you next fall.

idle time

I quietly left my position this week. I released my computer to IT and practically skipped out of my office. I hit the parking lot, started my car, and didn't look back. An air of uncertainly rests around me now, but it's my air, my doing, and I like it that way. I think I like it that way?

Nothing but time today and yesterday. Kerri being Kerri, I scheduled myself silly, created an impossible to finish to do list, and off I went.

Did I sit and eat bon bons? No. Did I catch up on all the things on the DVR and on demand I have been meaning to get to? No. I did log in a ridiculous amount of time working on a Halloween Party in town, but more on that later. Dear Lord, what did I get myself into? I checked items off that ever evolving and growing to do list that included fun things like Homegoods for Pillows, Trader Joe's for snacks, a hair cut wherein I caught up on most of my trashy mags, and a test drive for a car we are considering. It also included things like researching a snow blower, laundry, reorganizing the plasticware (oh, how I loathe gladware!), and planning the logistics for the transition.

There are some fun things planned before my new gig begins; an afternoon at the Aquarium with Lyle and Auntie C, a night away at the beach with Steve to celebrate our anniversary, a morning to sleep in (thanks Auntie K), and a day with just Mommy and the kids on Monday. Four days until the next tomorrow.