Our trip to Colorado was really wonderful and I can't tell you how great it was to see my beautiful niece, Cerisa, walking down the aisle all grownup and stuff. She's a married woman now. Congrats C-Weed! It was an honor to sing at your wedding.
There were some very bittersweet parts, though for obvious reasons. CJ should have been there.
Coming back to Virginia was actually kind of tough on me for some reason and I'm still not completely over it. I've had quite a few "moments" the past few days and it's been harder than usual to think about Charlotte and what she had to go through. Tuesday was the worst day I've had in a long while. It all started when I was looking for a template of the CJSTUF letterhead and came across the letter I wrote to Disney. It was all downhill from there. I was loosing it at the drop of a hat and really feeling a distinct lack of self control. I had to sit in my car in front of Romp n' Roll for a few minutes and let it all out of my system before going in (probably feeling a little sorry for myself, I must confess).
The strange thing is, the moment I walked into Romp n' Roll, I started feeling better. Rachel was teaching my Babies! class because I had to come in late and it was so nice to see everyone laughing and playing. All the positive energy really bolstered me.
Another thing that doesn't help is that it popped into my head how we used to gauge Charlotte's pain level. The scale of 1-10 and the happy-to-sad face graph really didn't work for her but she would respond pretty accurately when we asked her if her pain level was "a little" (thumb and forefinger apart), "a lot" (hands spread several inches apart), or "alotalot" (hands spread wide apart). I so hate the fact that we had to use that system. Any system at all for that matter.
I've had a few more ups and downs since then but nothing like Tuesday. I'm sure it's just my every six month meltdown that comes about once a month or so now. I'm sure getting back into running will help that.
Hey I think I smell a segue!
Some of you may have heard about my "Double Marathon Challenge" (or "Double Marathon Madness" as Rachel calls it) where I will be running the Chicago Marathon in October and then the Richmond Marathon in November all to raise funds for CJSTUF. Well, training begins on Saturday! How would YOU like to be involved?
We'll need TEAM CJ members for spirit groups along the routes of both marathons and if anyone else wants to run in any of the races (there's also the McDonalds 1/2 Marathon, HCAVA 8K, and a Kids Fun Run in Richmond), let us know. Anyone raising $1,000 or more will get registration fees reimbursed!
I'm tweeking the pledge form to include a few extra choices. (More on that later but think "VT vs UM!")
It's a three day a week program that worked very well for me a couple of Richmond Marathons ago. Anyone is invited to come running with me. I will be running every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday morning bright and early Starting at 7am. Short runs to start off adding mileage as time goes by.
If anyone isn't part of an official training team, feel free to come out and mosey a while with me. I might be going slow but at least I'll be going.
I would love for some Richmonders to come with us up to Chicago and/or Chicagoans to come down to Richmond for the respective races. It'll be a heck of a party in both cities!
Did I mention my goal is $10,000? I really have no fear that we won't reach it.
Here's a great idea that I'm shamelessly stealing: PLEDGEWARS! I think most of you know that Rachel and I are both graduates of the University of Miami and when I'm not bleeding orange and blue for the Denver Broncos or green and yellow for the Packers, I'm mixing them and bleeding orange and green for the "U." For some strange reason, I have run into a certain amount of resistance from people in this part of the country; especially from those turkeys in Blacksburg. Well, to be fair, I want to give all you Virginia Tech fans the chance to show me who's boss, I'm throwing down the gauntlet. If VT fans raise more money than UM fans then during the Richmond Marathon, I will wear either a turkey outfit or neck-to-toe, including socks and underwear, Virginia Tech garb (I shudder at the thought!). The hat will be a pink or purple Charlotte hat no matter which side wins.
C'mon Canes! You must save me from this fate. We will be keeping a running tally going and we'll have to see what colors I wear on November 13th! Stay tuned.
Here's a GREAT memory we have of Charlotte: When we would say, "We've got some Canes over here," we taught Charlotte to say "Whoosh! Whoosh!" If that's not inspiration for you, I don't know what is.
Last but not least, Coco's Chocolate Dream Chocolatiers, the company letting us use "Chocolate Makes Everything Better," has begun making butterfly chocolates! I don't think I ever told her about the butterfly connection. Please go to her website and thank them or just say hi from a CJ fan. If anyone wants to do a "Chocolate Stand" as a FUN-raiser, let me know and we'll get it set up.
Thanks for letting me rant. I'll keep searching.