Tuesday, November 23, 2010

There and Back Again

I was giddy with excitement and joy after our fantastic stay at "Out and About Treesort".  I had mixed feelings about what was in store for me over the next couple days.  Our next destination was Ashland, Oregon where I was supposed to run the Siskiyou Outback 50K.  Unfortunately this would be the first race I would scratch.  Nonetheless, I have never been to Ashland, had already reserved and paid for a hotel for two nights and most importantly had my running partner, Laura, along with several other friends to cheer on as they participated in the race. Dammit, though, I wanted desperately to be out there running this gorgeous course and tackling another challenge that I had painstakingly trained for.  Could I set aside my disappointment and put on a happy face for the people that I so cared for?

There were a lot of tears this weekend. Tears of sadness at the finality of missing out on this race.  Tears of disappointment that my friends would run this race without me.  Tears of pride as I watched my running partner stoically take on the challenge of running her first 50K.  Tears of joy as I watched my running partner cross the finish line with a huge smile on her face knowing that she put her whole heart, soul and ounce of strength into this race.  Even though this event was four months ago, it remains a bittersweet memory.

When I returned from my tour of Southern Oregon, I would be placed in a walking cast for a minimum of three weeks.  My foot just wasn't healing on its own.  I hoped like heck that the cast would heal my foot for once and for all so I could get back to my running.  I'll spare you the details around those three weeks in the cast.  They were rough on my physically and mentally.  I was not a pleasant person to be around.  The cast and I went many places together. We spent a week at the horse ranch in Bend with family, floated down the Deschutes River, hung out at a brew pub in Portland with my BFF, celebrated a friend's 40th birthday with live music, sweet treats and karaoke, limped around BBQs and family trips to the park, pool, frozen yogurt place, sweated during lifting sessions at the gym, logged countless miles on the stationary bike, swayed to my favorite band as they played an open air concert, supported my husband as he ran a 50 mile race in Mt. Hood, camped in our new VW Eurovan a couple times.

When the cast came off, I expected to magically be healed.  Boy was I ever wrong!  Both feet hurt now. Perhaps I shouldn't have done so much while in the "walking cast"?  While the PF rupture healed itself, it formed excess scar tissue and developed plantar fasciitis.  My "healthy foot" developed tendonitis from having to compensate from the weaker one.  I was seeing red.  Enough with western medicine! An acupuncture friend thought she could help me run again.  I saw her twice a week for several weeks and started taking Chinese herbs.  Within three weeks of treatment, I had my first pain-free day in months!  I wasn't running yet, but I regained my optimism that I could get through this injury that somehow had come to define me.

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