I've been putting off writing this post because...well, BECAUSE..I didn't want to do what I felt was accepting defeat!
I will simply start with this--
As you can see--this was actually written last week when I went in to see my doctor about the back pain that I have had going on for awhile. It wasn't BAD all of the time, but after sitting for awhile or bending a certain way, I would get really bad pain and spasms and had real difficulty sleeping at night because of it. I kept putting off going to the doctor (just like writing this post!)--hoping that it would just go away. Finally, last Wednesday morning I decided that I should just stop being stubborn and go get it checked out. After all, I really screwed up my toe a few years back when I ran the NYC Marathon a week after breaking my toe and I ended up in a boot cast up to my knee for MONTHS afterwards due to my determination to run anyway. Would I do permanent damage to my back by running this marathon--and if the back pain did not get better--would I even be ABLE to run? If I'm being honest here (which I am TRYING to be--even if it makes me sound rather--um--crazy?!),there were actually a combination of things that made me finally decide to make the doctors appointment.
For several days, in addition to the back pain, I had been experiencing a lot of skipping, fluttering heartbeats that were starting to worry me just a bit! I experienced this before and was sent to have a stress test along with some other testing and was told by the Cardiologist that my heart was fine--that I had SOME irregularities but nothing that indicated heart disease. Of course, I never got an answer as to WHAT the irregularities DID indicate, but I was just happy to hear that there was no heart disease! The cardiologist also said at that time that even though SHE didn't like the idea of marathon running--as long as I was properly trained for one--she didn't have TOO much of a problem with me running another one?! I started to really be concerned that between the heart palpitations (or whatEVER they were) combined with my NOT being so well trained for this marathon AND the back pain--that I could really be taking a risk and just being stupid (ME--doing something stupid?!!) by running this 26.2 miles and I wanted to get my doctor's opinion on the matter (not that I would necessarily TAKE the doctor's advice--I just wanted his opinion!)-- Anyway, after getting to the doctor, I very stubbornly almost did not even MENTION the heart palpitations! When he got out his stethoscope though, I told him what had been going on and after listening to my heart--he said right away that he heard definite skipping/fluttering and that he wanted to do an EKG even though my prior tests indicated that all was well.
After the tests were done, he determined that the type of arrhythmia that I was experiencing was most likely caused by too much caffeine, stress, or other non-serious issues and that as far as he was concerned, my heart would not be an issue if I were to run a marathon TOMORROW!! That's good news--RIGHT? Yes, but after more examination of my back and discussing how soon the marathon was coming up and the fact that between my illness (ear infection, sinus infection, bronchial thing) that I had JUST gotten over when I injured my back--that he did NOT think I should be running long distance right now. Of course, I started blubbering about how I had raised money for Camp and that the people who had supported me were thinking that I would be running this marathon--and that I was STILL working toward my goal--and I would be letting people down--and WAH-WAH-WAH---!!! So (even though I think he was a little AFRAID of the crazy blubbering woman at this point?!), he asked, "Well, do you think these people want you to REALLY hurt yourself? Don't the kids STILL get the money? Could you run a DIFFERENT marathon--like one that ISN'T in just over a week? One that would allow your back to get better first?"
He said that I should go get some x-ray's done, but that no matter WHAT the x-rays showed, he didn't think that I should run this marathon on April 15th....well...CRAP! He actually typed out the above note from his laptop while I was sitting there blubbering and he said that I could choose to ignore his advice, but he hoped that I would not. From some past x-rays we knew that I had some arthritis in my lower back and he wanted to see if that looked worse, but he suspected that I had somehow injured or aggravated my back--possibly by trying to play catch-up with my training after not being able to run during my illness--lifting something, or maybe even by COUGHING? Who knows?
I didn't hear from him about the x-rays until yesterday. The good news--the arthritis and disk deterioration did not look any worse than the last time--just a little inflammation that he attributed to maybe one of the things mentioned above---BUT, he still did NOT want me to run a marathon or ANY long distance for a month or two. He said that as soon as the back pain was gone I could start running short distances again and build back up--basically starting all over again.
After talking to the doc and discussing it with Ray...I made the decision to call Michael Hund at Team Hole in the Wall and tell him that I would NOT BE RUNNING BOSTON....ANOTHER thing that I had a VERY hard time doing. Of course, Michael, who is one of the nicest guys EVER--told me that I had ALREADY done so much to support the kids and Camp and that I was STILL a big part of the TEAM--AND--Well, I'm not really sure EXACTLY what else he said, because I was TRYING not to start BLUBBERING AGAIN! I do know that he said that he hoped that I would still be in Boston to cheer on the other THITW runners and that I would attend the pre-marathon Team dinner with my family because we are ALL a big part of the Hole in the Wall Camp family!
So--YES we will be in Boston for the festivities and NO, I will NOT cry as the runners go past!
So,as of today, my total raised is $7,408 and I am not DONE!
Stay tuned for--
PS. It took me awhile to share this even AFTER I decided I could do it! I wrote most of it yesterday but could not hit "publish" until after I signed up for the NYC Marathon today!