Tuesday Open Thread

Happy Tuesday!

I’m in the midst of a pathetic little pity party. My mysterious injury has worsened to the point that I decided not to run my first full marathon on May 6th. I am SO dejected and disappointed. I have never really had to deal with an injury like this, so I’m kind of at a loss. I made an appointment with my primary care physician for April 30; in the meantime I will be seeing a highly recommended massage therapist and taking a break from running (gulp). Anyone out there have experience with a chiropractor, positive or negative? This is a pain in my left hip area, pretty high up (maybe my pelvic bone?). The pain radiates to my lower back. So odd, and so frustrating.

In other news . . . who watched Mad Men on Sunday night? OMG! What was your favorite moment? I loved everything about the fistfight scene, I was LOLing big time. Best moment since the riding lawnmower scene, IMHO.

In political news, the comically tone-deaf GOP predictably blocked the Buffet Rule Bill. Polls show that 7 out of 10 Americans are in favor of such a bill.

What’s on your mind? Chat away!


67 thoughts on “Tuesday Open Thread

  1. I know you’re majorly bummed, Erika, and I hate to come over all Pollyanna-ish, but focus on the process, not the goal. With all the training you have done up to now, I’ll bet your cardio function is like whoa. Plus, you’ve already pushed yourself into distances you probably thought you’d never do, and do regularly.

    I hope you sort out the source of the pain soon, because that sounds urgh.

    • Also, watch out for that Papi Blez. He’s so darn enthusiastic about biking, I’ve done gone and sourced a racing jersey for my new team, GreenEDGE. I’m going to end up one of those crazy cycling freaks because of him.

      • Hey! Don’t knock the crazy cycling freaks. We rock! And we go much, much farther and faster than you runners. Seriously, running is very hard on the body. Cycling is just plain healthier, in my aging opinion. My knees are so much happier since I gave up running.

        • Yeah, when I was slogging out my final, painful 10 mile run on Sunday I kept staring enviously at all the cyclists whizzing by me who weren’t in pain with every. single. step. Tyler keeps telling me to ride with him but I know it will be a disaster. He is physically and psychologically incapable of a casual ride. He’s all or nothing. And he’s fast as heck. I just don’t see how it could work.

          • Don’t ride with your DH, at least not at first. When I started out a few years back, I always rode alone–slowly, for short distances. Eventually I gained the confidence and experience to enjoy riding with my DH. I draft a lot, as it’s the only way I can keep up. He drops me on the hills, but then doubles back to pick me up (and I’m never that far behind him, so he just adds a little extra climbing to his ride). And I still ride on my own a lot, because it can be discouraging to always be trying to keep up. I need time to go my own pace without any pressure. Here in Chile I don’t have access to any riding groups, but you could probably find people with similar riding interests in your area if you don’t want to ride alone.

        • aw, no hate, you know. I actually ride a lot myself. Do a spin class each week, and we usually go for a family ride at least once a weekend. I have two bikes – a retro model for city riding (slow, heavy, but cute) and my faster “racing bike” for when I’m doing other work. Wish I could actually use my bike more, because basically, all the important destinations are within a 4-8km radius (no more than five miles), but our streets are just not safe.

      • Maybe switch to triathalons once your hip is feeling better. I know you mentioned not being a strong swimmer, but if your cardio is good, that stamina will only help you learn to swim better.

  2. Shh! No giving away Mad Men. I’m like 3 weeks behind thanks to vacation… lol! Hope you recover soon Erika. Rachel’s right, you’re probably more likely to heal faster being in such good health!

  3. Erika, one other unsolicited suggestion — since you can’t get in to see your Dr for a couple of weeks, you might put some feelers out among your friends and neighbors and find out if anyone is friends with a good physical therapist — if so they might be willing to share your symptoms and get some suggestions for stretching/exercises, or just an educated guess as to what it sounds like your injury might be. I have found [through DH’s back injury] that a couple of different friends asked friends of theirs who are PTs and both of them were spot on with DH’s diagnosis. this was in the time when he was contemplating surgery but still going through the diagnostics to find out if it was warranted. Good luck!

  4. did you maybe lose too much weight? my 1st husband had horrible trouble w/ his sciatic nerve when he did that maybe twenty years ago.

    john slattery was on what what happens live last night. he was very sweet about joan- he says she and roger are soul mates. awwwwwwww.

    in honor of gina’s mad men slackery i won’t go into any detail whatsoever, but I KNOW!!!!!!!! favorite moment? ugh- can’t say until gina gets her act together. i did love ken gosgrove getting some storytime, if only because he looks exactly like one of the little boys i drive. i keep trying to get his parents to watch mad men already.

  5. I love Mad Men! The fight scene was priceless. I loved how this episode focused on Pete (no spoilers, I promise!). I also love game of thrones, so sunday night TV is so good right now!

  6. This morning I saw yesterday’s NY Post cover with a picture of Hilary Clinton drinking a beer and they call her “Swillary”. I know I shouldn’t expect anything less from them, but I just wanted to vent a little. All the good she’s done and she gets on the cover of the news because she’s drinking a beer? This is NEWS?? I’m surprised they didn’t headline it “Slut!” but I guess they thought this turn of phrase was “cute”.
    That is all, signed, a Slutty Swiller

  7. I have to say, that out of all the pregnancy hassles I had absolutely no idea about, this thing where I have to spend the next five months sitting/standing/lying with my knees together and feet flat on the floor (not when lying down, obviously) is the one most likely to drive me bonkers. I hate chairs. Hate them. Always have—my teachers despaired. I never sit in them if I can help it, and when I do, I like to sprawl with my legs over the sides, or cross my legs in a very unladylike way, or pull my feet up and sit cross-legged … However, as all of those things cause shooting pain up my back and sitting properly keeps it to a mere annoyance, I’m trying to be good. I didn’t think the support brace was helping until I made the mistake of taking it off for airport security *before* hoisting my suitcase onto the belt. So, yeah. With proper posture and the belt (an annoyance of its own, since it’s held on with industrial-strength Velcro, fastens in 3 different places, and needs to be adjusted every time I use the bathroom), I’m merely in discomfort and irritated by having to maintain the posture. But since the pain of not doing so is truly extraordinary (albeit brief), I’m going to do my best to keep this up until September. I did also order a prenatal Pilates DVD since core strengthening should help somewhat.

    Two weeks until we find out if it’s a boy or a girl! We’re considering not telling anyone until the baby shower, though, so that we don’t get a bajillion little football uniforms/frilly pink dresses. My mom is very hurt that we may not tell her, but is being the stereotype of why we don’t want to tell people. The next time I hear “I saw the cutest thing I wanted to get you, but I don’t know yet if you’re having a boy or girl” I might scream. Not to mention that I’d really rather she put the money she’s spending on baby toys towards, say, a plane ticket to come meet her grandbaby.

    • ugh, sorry you’re having so much pain. FWIW, I had major back pain around the middle of my pregnancy and then it lessened greatly as time went on. Maybe the pain wont’ last the whole rest of your pregnancy — I’ll hope so.

      • Thanks, that’s good to hear. Internet has mostly been “well, for some people it goes away within the first 3 months after giving birth, and for some you’re just stuck with it forever.” I was really not expecting any major new symptoms to start until the 3rd trimester! But apparently this was right on schedule.

      • I’m wondering whether I can get my doctor to write a note demanding they replace my damn desk chair at work. It’s allegedly ergonomic, but it’s so old that none of the adjustments stay in place for very long. Not that I want a desk chair in the first place, but since it’s what I’ve got, I’d at least like one that has functional springs.

        • I’d definitely ask for that. Perhaps they could do it even without the dr. note. But if they won’t ask for the Dr. note. A nice chair can make a huge difference for me.

        • I had terrible pelvic pain when I was pregnant. I used a big physio ball to sit on and would roll my hips while I was sitting on it. It did help. And I often sat in a yoga squat when I had to sit. I can’t describe that one…kind of a peeing in the woods squat, but with your heels flat on the floor and your belly between your legs.

    • Yeah, I hear ya. My mom always used to spend a ton of money getting cute little fluffy things for my kids or stuff they were likely to break in five minutes. I wished she’d just sock it into an investment fund for them. But she’s a wonderful grandmother and she loves those kids and I can hardly complain that she’s generous to a fault!

  8. the guy i’ll be volunteering for this election has a diary up over at dk: can we still do links over here? anyway, it’sthe “running in ct-05” diary bu chris donovan

  9. Sorry you’re injured, Erika. I hope you get it figured out and dealt with soon.

    How’s this for the prefect nearly-the-end to my documentary? The two most vocal complainers about the PTO, a horrid married couple who I’m convinced are either enhancing or compensating for their sex life with all their bitching, were both nominated to serve next year and turned it down because the don’t have the time.

      • I think they will be quiet now, but only because we have an EXTREMELY diplomatic PTO lined up for next year. Complaining about things that would naturally lead back to them being the ones who dropped the ball doesn’t bother them. Last year, the wife complained indignantly that our school hadn’t been involved in the opening of a new playground dedicated to the memory of Zina Lennek (a child who was murdered in the neighborhood in 2007). Now first of all, Zina Lennek didn’t go to our school, but secondly, this woman works for the parks department and would have been the natural one to organize the whole thing. It wasn’t her job, but even so you’d think she would have been just a little hesitant to complain that it wasn’t done.

    • Yeah, because who would they bitch at and about if they were the ones responsible. They sound unbearable. But perfect for the villians of a mockumentary.

  10. WWMTD? Hi all. With our recent move, we’ve changed elementary school districts. The new school, L, does feed the same middle school as Mira’s current school, E. Both are very good. We could keep Mira in E. But our house backs the L playground and there are tons of kids in the neighborhood. We should start Isaac at L next year for kindergarten and I don’t think we could manage the logistics of two different schools with the exact same start/end times. We had thought that we’d let the idea of change come from Mira as she met new kids and wanted to be in school with them. But we didn’t realize how quickly kids would ask or how torn Mira is – at one time wanting E, another time wanting L. So, to keep her from struggling with uncertainty we did tell her last night that she would go to L, starting next year. But in just the last 12 hours that’s resulted in all kinds of fear of L. I don’t necessarily know what we’d do different if we had to do it over. But I’m also not happy with where we are – Mira’s feeling anxious and I don’t feel like I’m helping her well.

    When I called L to register Isaac they asked if Mira would want to transfer this year to meet kids before summer. In some ways that sounds nice. But she also has all this end of year stuff at E that she’s looking forward to – a music concert, some big field trips, etc. I’m going to talk to her current teacher to get his sense of things. But wondered what you’ve seen/heard about transitions and school-age kids?

    • Hmmm. I’ll be interested to hear any advice, as we may be facing this in a few years (or sooner, but gah, I hope not!)

      It seems to me you’re doing pretty much the best thing – let her finish out this year with the old friends and activities, then gear up for the change. If there is any kind of activity before school starts where she can meet kids from the new school or class that might help.

    • We had to do a transfer in second grade, not by choice, overall, it’s been good. But there are some downfalls to transferring….I do feel like we missed out on those early years at this new place and I still sort of sense an outsider status. So it hasn’t been perfectly ideal. Luckily, the child is very easy-going. With a more difficult/anxious child, who knows.

      I’d be tempted to leave her in her current school, if it’s logistically possible, and considering they all feed into the same middle school in a few years anyway. She can meet friends in the neighborhood anyway.

      If it’s not logistically possible, then it’s not.


      • Yeah… this triggers my mom guilt. If it were just Mira, we’d leave her at E and have her just meet the neighbors and then all be together in 3.5 years when they start middle school. But Isaac is starting K and should be at L – and able to just run out the back door to get to school. But it’s not logistically possible to get them both to school/picked up on time since both E and L have the same start/end times. So Mira will have to change in Sept. at the latest and I feel bad because she had the big transition 2 years ago when we moved here too. Maybe we’ll see some other option, but right now I don’t see it. Hopefully Isaac starting in K will help us feel a little less “outsider.”

        Glad to hear that you’re still happy with your transition.

        I’m trying to figure out how much of Mira is anxiety vs. drama…

        • 3 yrs is a loooooong time to readjust, IMO. If she were going into 6th grade, maybe it would make sense to schlep. Esp since she’s super social, I bet she’ll be fine. Can you sell her on how just running across the backyard means more playtime or some tv time (or whatever) in the am?

          • Yeah – we need to figure out the right selling point. I’m quite sure that once she starts, it will be fine. Well 90%+ of the time. When the normal things go wrong instead of just hearing about that going wrong we will also hear the romanticized version of E and how everything would be perfect if she were just there :-) I’m more worried about what to do now to sell so that she doesn’t work up anxiety and/or drive me crazy about it between now and Sept!

        • If you have to do it, you have to do it. It sounds like the best option for you guys. I wasn’t prepared for that one part of transferring, I thought transferring so early, one wouldn’t feel like an outsider. Of course, I’m the one who feels more like an outsider with the moms than the kid lol. My DD started in pre-K this year and I feel like so much more part of that group in her class and connected than I do with my DSs class. Oh well.

          • Sometimes it’s just the classes. I feel like an outsider with my daughter’s nursery school class parents/grandparents but haven’t felt that way as much with my sons’ classes, especially once they started elementary school. I really clicked with the other parents when my oldest was at nursery school and haven’t had that nice of a combination of parents since with that age group.

        • We had two kids start at a new school at the same time and having one in 4K really helped. Abbey was a 4th grader and while she made friends, we were kind of outsiders in that group. However, we made tons of friends with parents in Bill’s class and have maintained those as our “peeps” over the years. So, yes, I think that having I in kindy will help you get to know people.

      • Don’t feel bad about doing what you have to do. She will adjust. We’ve had to move children more than once for a variety of reasons. Usually, they went along with it, and it was what they wanted to do. Last change, though, was when my daughter was going into high school. We insisted that she had to at least try the high school that her brother was attending for just the reasons you list. It simplified our lives considerably and honestly, we didn’t know how we’d manage having her in a couple of schools she was interested in. We knew that this school would be a great match for her. I wouldn’t have sent her somewhere that I knew she would be unhappy. She resisted and pouted until the day she started. And she loved it from the beginning. All I’ve had to deal with since is never, ever letting the words “I told you so” cross my lips.

    • It seems important for her to be able to enjoy the end of year stuff at E. But can you take Mira to visit L sometime before school is out? Would they give her a tour or let her sit in a half day or something? And maybe they have an end of the year carnival you can take the kids to. I bet you’ll find kids in the neighborhood before too long and can arrange playdates this summer. It sounds so awesome to live so close!

      • That’s a great idea and hopefully something like that is feasible. A half day visit or a fun event so that she can see the school, in a positive light, and have that to hold on to over the summer. Mira is SUPER social. She’s always meeting new people and I’m not that worried about how she’ll do once she’s there. But she’s also anxious and dramatic so I’m more worried about how she’ll be UNTIL it happens.

      • I would absolutely let her finish the year. The time to transition is when everyone is transitioning to a new classroom and a new teacher; her transition will be larger than her classmate’s, but it is the beginning of a new social dynamic so it will be easier than trying to fit into the established classroom now. Plus I think she needs time to get used to the idea of leaving her current classmates.

        One of the ideas I’ve been considering is making DS9 a book of “tickets” that he can cash in for playdates with his old friends. Of course I would do that without the tickets, but I think he needs a tangible sign that he can keep his connections with his friends despite the transfer.

        • That’s a great idea. Now that Isaac and Mira will both be in the same school we’ve been considering a student/nanny for afternoons so they’d just go home/to activities rather than be in the after school program. And a plus of this is that playdates will be much easier to do. So something that makes that very “real” would be helpful and I think this might be just the ticket. (ha ha!)

      • I think sheri had a great idea — one I was going to suggest myself. You don’t want to yank Mira away from stuff she’s looking forward to and had a hand in planning, but it makes sense to transfer schools eventually for convenience’s sake. I’d let Mira finish out at her old school, but take her to spend one day in the new school so the fear of the unknown doesn’t plague her all summer.

        Can the new school hook your daughter up on that day with a mentor — a reliable girl who is known to be friendly to everyone — and who they can guarantee will be in her class next year?

        My son mentored a newcomer for one day in 5th grade, and the school made sure they were put together for 6th. Knowing that, I invited the boy over to my house twice over the summer, and his mother was ever so grateful that her son had a playdate. The following year they became fast friends. My son is in uni now, but he spent his own money to go visit the boy in Perth a couple of months ago, after the boy moved there last year.

        My daughter is mentoring a new girl this year in 9th grade, and they have become very close friends.

        So I know I’m speaking from the POV of the mentor, but my son found a friend for life which wouldn’t have happened if the mentee weren’t equally as invested. Your daughter might find her new BFF!

    • Remind me what grade Mira is in?

      We’re dealing with this as well. I actually dropped the bomb on him on the airport parking shuttle at the beginning of our trip; my boys were speculating about which 4th grade teacher DS9 would get, and I said, “I’m afraid you won’t have either. I didn’t tell you yesterday because you were sick, but we got a letter from the school system. You’ve been assigned to W for next year.” Total deer-in-headlights moment, and really not the way I had envisioned breaking the news, but somehow I sensed it was the right moment to tell him.

      He’s taking it well, maybe better than I’d expected. But then again I’ve been gradually working up to this for a month. This is the kid who as a toddler needed three weeks of careful preparation every time we approached the traumatic transition to a new pair of shoes.

      • I was thinking of you the other day – I’d wanted to follow your lead of working her up to it. But she jumped into the conversation much faster than I expected. I’m glad that DS9 has been taking this better than you expected – must be a nice relief!

        She’s just a year behind your DS – she’ll be in third grade next year.

    • late to chime in but I think you’ve chosen the right path.

      Love the idea of visiting the school — and especially if they have a carnival or some other festival.

      Also — I wonder if your new neighborhood has a yahoo group or listserv that you could join. I see posts quite often on our neighborhood yahoo group of people saying “just moved here and would love to meet other kids aged the same as mine. Is there any organized playgroup? Or We will be at the park at 2 p.m. on Saturday and would love to meet some of you there.” I think once she has met some friends in the neighborhood and knows that they all go to L school, it will make it easier.

      Good luck!

    • A friend at school just faced this. They wanted to pull their kids out to attend their neighborhood school & didn’t know when to do it. She finally took the advice of a family friend who’s been a teacher for some 30 years, & since the kids are in first grade & k, her advice was do it now. That way the kids can make some connections in the eight weeks left of school, play with the kids in the neighborhood all summer, & feel much more settled by fall.

      It sounded a bit counterintuitive to me, but I can see the advantage. Her kids are missing a few end-of-year things, but I think she’s reasoning that it’s just life & they’ll get through it. She pulled them last week & they started at their new school yesterday. So that’s one exerience, but don’t know how it will end yet.

      • I never would have thought of that, but I can see the logic. Kind of like a Band-Aid, just rip it off. Eliminates the anticipatory anxiety.

      • I hope that it goes well for them. And that’s the same thing that I had initially dismissed but I’ve been surprised how many teachers and administrators have suggested it. I’m still waiting to hear back from her teacher to see what he thinks. Let me know if you hear anything from them!

    • It sounds like her starting at L in the fall is a good idea. Summer can be all about meeting the neighborhood kids, and then maybe a new school in the fall wouldn’t be as scary because she’d have some familiar faces. Would knowing that Isaac’s at L, too, make that idea more appealing to her?

    • No advice, but I can offer my anecdotal experience. DS1 is on his third elementary school — he transferred after 1st grade and again after 3rd. He wasn’t thrilled with either change, but both transitions worked out well. In both cases, it was the right thing to do for him and the right thing for our family. We always made the transitions at the beginning of a new school year, letting him finish out the year at his old school.

  11. I have experience with chiropractors, mostly negative. My mom was a big believer in chiropracty, which is the main reason my spine had to be fused when I reached adulthood. One of them did something to my neck when I was 14 and I ended up in a neck brace for a couple of weeks. I do think they can help with a limited number of things, but the philosophy behind the practice is weak (I’m being generous here), the profession is weakly regulated and refuses to self regulate, and the field tends to attract some real loons (including an old housemate of mine, so I know whereof I speak).

    Despite my skepticism, I do give it another try every few years. But only for the physical manipulation; I would not take any advice dispensed except about stretching or exercise. If you do try it, keep in mind that you may or may not be working with one of the loons – in the absence of species specific markings I’m not confident they can be quickly identified.

      • I think the profession is dodgy and under regulated, but a good chiropractor can achieve great results quickly. I had hip pain after an injury, and it was almost unbearable but treated after a few chiro visits. he also addressed lower back pain during my pregnancy, and another should issue. I probably see him once a week for 3-4 weeks every year when something is out, and then don’t see him again for the year.

        My latest hip pain he was less successful at fixing, turned out to be a repetitive stress injury from my long commute. I now sit on a towel to drive so my hip is above my knee, and voila! Good as new.

        Just a few ideas to add to the list.


  12. Erika, have you started Advil yet? You might want to call your doctor prior to your appointment and get the dose, sometimes you should take more for stuff like this. Or you might be able to look it up on the internet somewhere too. I don’t think I would try a chiropractor or a massage until I tried Advil and lots of rest but that’s just me. Hope you feel better soon.

    • On can safely take up to 800 mgs of Advil(ibuprofen). That’s the prescription dose and generally four over-the-counter pills. I recently tried Alleve with pretty good results, too.

  13. I know how you feel, Erika. I hurt my knee on my second and last 20 mile training run and was unable to run my first (and only) marathon. I strongly recommend physical therapy over chiropractors. People I know who LOVE chiropractors are always going back to them. Why? Can’t they fix the underlying problem? Whereas physical therapy is never intended to be something you need to do forever. They find the problem and if you follow their instructions, it generally gets better. My knee is 100% better now, and just as important, I know exercises to do in case it acts up again. Also, I am NEVER trying to run another marathon. I need my feet and my knees for too many other activities to lose them to running.

    Training for a marathon IS a big accomplishment, and you can learn lot from it, regardless of whether you run the actual race.


    Whew! That felt good! Nothing new, nothing big, nothing that won’t resolve eventually………just a whole f-in lot of stuff to keep track of!

    • I think –

      click on the gravatar

      log in

      it will give you an option to upload a pic (or pic an image)

      What we all noticed when we did this is that it can take several minutes to “work”. So, if you do it and then come right back here, you’ll think it didn’t happen. But walk away, don’t let the computer know you’re worried, and it will be there the next time you log in.

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