10/24/14 Friday Freewrite part 2

Wow, do I feel self-absorbed and pitiful. (This morning, I spent a few hours pouting, feeling fearful, and anxious.)

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Jean Thompson Ackerly Barnard, my maternal Grandma Oct. 29, 1918 – Oct. 25, 2009

I just realized that tomorrow, October 25, is not only the Soaring Wings Half Marathon, it is also the anniversary of my maternal grandmother’s death.

My first Soaring Wings Half Marathon, 2010, I ran in honor of Grandma. I gave my mother, her daughter, a shadowbox of my medal, bib, and photo.

I have a rather, uh, colorful outfit for tomorrow’s race. I’m sure Grandma would say, “You look so chic!” and she’d pronounce the CH as in chicken not as /sh/.

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Grandma and her zany outfits. I come by it honestly.

Do I still feel anxious about tomorrow’s race? Heck yeah. But I’m ready to suck it up, Buttercup. And I’m excited. I just had to get my head straight. As in, head out of my a$$.

Me and my CHic self are gonna rock this thing tomorrow, in whatever shape or form it takes to finish. For Grandma!

I know. I know This post is self-absorbed, obvs! Geez. But really, I share so that anyone who may also have similar pre-race feelings can maybe get a different perspective too.

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10/24/14 Friday Freewrite: Running blues aka you can’t have it all

Friday Freewrite…where I set the timer for a random time and just write, no edits.

WAH

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Photo: joy filled days dot com

I have a half marathon tomorrow. I’m not excited. I feel undertrained. I am afraid of pain. My last few long runs have been painful and frankly I’m not sure I’ll finish 13.1 miles tomorrow without a significant amount of pain. And I don’t mean slight soreness. I mean pain. Searing, someone-is-doing-voodoo-on-my-left-knee-with-an-ice-pick pain.

What happened to the girl who was EXCITED to do these things? Confident she would finish relatively discomfort-free? Dunno.

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Kristen G and me before the 2010 Soaring Wings Half Marathon.

Yes, I know I chose to register and I can choose not to do this race. But I don’t want to wimp out.

Not only am I a-feared of this race, I am sad about missing 2 entertainment opportunities tonight. When did giving up night-before-race entertainment options become a burden rather than a pleasure, in the excitement of a cool race experience the next day? Dunno.

I’ve completed a marathon and 5ks, 10ks, half marathons, so I know training requires sacrifice. Training runs instead of lounging at home with doggie on couch. Being in bed early Friday and Saturday nights because of an early long run the next day. I cannot have it all.

Being at the start line at 730am means rising at 5am for breakfast and other pre-race preps, leaving my house at 630 to get there in time to park and have my raceday meltdown/bitchiness. Some of you know EXACTLY what I mean because, unfortunately, you’ve been there with me.

So. Tonight I’m missing Ashley McBryde at Reno’s Argenta Cafe with her FULL BAND. [GO IF YOU CAN!] Yes, I see Ashley perform many times, but a full band gig is rare. It starts at 10pm…2 hours after I plan to be in bed. Because, race.

AND I had to pass on 2 free tickets opening night at  The Rep. Champagne reception. The show starts at 8…1 hour after I plan to be in bed. Because, race.

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Me, Sarah, Erin, and Milo the Dog – National Running Day 2013

Yes, I know that many other people cannot walk even a step, much less run around the track once (I’ve been there), or complete a race. I know this in my brain, cognitively. But my little selfish heart says WAH WAH WAH. I want to be able to do a race AND feel excited about it AND not worry about pain AND do other stuff leading up to the race.

I know that this is the mental/emotional challenge of running. “Running is 80% mental, 20% physical” yadda yadda. And I WILL overcome. ESPECIALLY with the love and encouragement of my sole sisters, the HOT LEGS RUNNING GROUP and my friends and loved ones who will be route-side, cheering.

But for now, wah. 

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10/15/14 Wordless Wednesday: Fishy sculpture

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10/9/14 TBT 1987 High School Senior

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10/7/14 Lilies because…

well. she knows.

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10/6/14 Little Rock Pride

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Li’l ol’ “normal”me in the yellow shirt and jean shorts. Photo: Jessica Lawhon

Sunday October 5 I walked in the Little Rock Pride parade with my church, New Beginnings 

I felt nervous because, until recently, I thought of Pride events as flamboyant displays of debauchery. People in wild, revealing costumes, sticking tongues and fingers in everyone’s orifices, humping in the street, and other “crazy” behavior.

But I love my church and wanted to walk in solidarity with my brothers and sisters. I considered wearing a wig and my signature rainbow tutu.

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Oh how I love wearing my rainbow tutu. Race for the Cure 2014 with my pal Carrie. Photo: Carrie Gilbert

But I wanted to just be me. Katie as you see her every day. Ok, so, yes, there were some people dressed in “dramatic” costumes,  but the majority of parade participants and spectators were “normal” people.

I also felt nervous about protesters. Would we be assaulted? What if I am caught on camera? Could being part of this event somehow return to haunt or to hurt me?

I marveled at the spectators, clapping, shouting cheers, holding signs. I thanked every one of them I could.

Many people were in the River Market as another Sunday afternoon, lunching, walking with their families, enjoying a beautiful fall day. I wondered what their thoughts are to encountering this event. Did they see the parade as a novelty? Entertainment? Something to scoff at and talk to their friends about later (“oh we saw a bunch of gays/freaks when we were in Little Rock)? Or did they appreciate it for what it was..a sincere showing that we are people, just like any other, who want to be able to live our lives as non-LGBTQ people.

I felt proud of the people who marched in the parade.  And I felt sad and angry about those who felt like they couldn’t for a number of reasons: intolerance and backlash from friends or family, exposing their children and/or partners to hatred, possibility of losing their jobs (Arkansas is a right to work state; we can be fired at any time for any reason…or no reason). I flushed with anger about that.

I thought of demonstrations/celebrations throughout our country’s history:

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Photo: thedevelopmentofwomensrights dot com

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Paul Robeson & Civil Rights Congress Picketing the White House August, 1948 Photo: blackpast dot com

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Women’s suffrage parade, New York Photo: archives dot gov

My friend Jessica said, “…how important it is for us, the lgbt community, to be visible and expand people’s idea of the queer population…shoving it in your face is not what pride is about, but falling in love with someone and wanting to cuddle [with] her on the couch while watching episodes of things on hulu…that is what it is about: Humanity! Commonality! Above all Love.”

My partner and I look forward, someday, to being fully “out.” We must be discreet due to her job and family situation. We both hate it, but it’s a reality.

To the “straight allies” who marched and spectated, thank you. To the LGBTQ people who risked being in the parade, thank you. Maybe someday we won’t need parades. We’ll just live.

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My buddy Charity. Photo: Jessica Lawhon

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10/3/14 Pink memories

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6 years ago Mom was visiting me in Little Rock when she mentioned she had a dimple in her breast. She said she would call her doctor when she returned home. She was diagnosed with breast cancer. 5 years ago she completed the Little Rock Komen Race for the Cure, cancer free. Love you, Mom!

http://www.syncweekly.com/news/2009/oct/13/dream-teams/

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