Week Three weeks away!
Sep 10, 2011 by Kimberly Matis Friedlander
So, it's been a super busy couple of weeks. Last week we did 10 miles and today we did 9. It was a tough 9 miles since I've been feeling under the weather, but I think about my mom and that she starts radiation on the 21st and there's that perspective again...
Last week, after finishing 10 miles, I was doing my usual shopping at Runners Depot, my new favorite store, and someone came in to tell me I had to go back to the post-training group meeting. At that point, Karen, our coordinator, announces that the highest fundraiser for this race in the country is on the Miami team. Then she says that the second highest fundraiser is in South Carolina. I'm still standing there wondering why I had to come back from shopping, when she announces that I'm the third highest fundraiser in the country for the Wine and Dine half marathon. I have to say, I'm still in shock... I want to thank each and every one of you for donating and reading my somewhat weekly posts. All of your support has made this an amazing year. Knowing that all of you contributed to support me makes it even more amazing. The emails asking about my mom have been so wonderful. It has been a tough year for my entire family in different ways, but the support has made it a little bit easier. Please email me the names of anyone you would like me to honor by putting their names on my jersey on the day of the race and I will mail you the ribbon once I return home from the race in Disney.
Thank you again for everything! I promise to send out an email with my time and a picture after crossing that finish line...
Week 15 and 16!
Sep 01, 2011 by Kimberly Matis Friedlander
Well, since my last post, my mom got home from the hospital, the oncologist agreed no more chemo, she is slowly regaining her strength, and she gets to be a grandmother again. Before she left the hospital, they took out the picc line, which really does mean no more chemo! Yahoo! Seeing her in the hospital was devastating, frustrating, and crushing. It was a constant reminder that no one lives forever and that every minute needs to be enjoyed, not stressed over. It also reminded me, 1) never go to sleep mad and 2) always say "I LOVE YOU". You don't ever want to regret the last words you say to someone.
My mom is really looking forward to being a grandma again. It has been especially rough on my boys. Until the diagnosis, we saw Grandma at least once a week. I think the boys have seen her four or five times since January. They are really looking forward to time with Grandma and I think it's mutual!
We did 8 or 10 miles last week. They are all starting meld together. We are in the final month countdown. A few team members are driving up Thursday night before the race and are planning a cupcake crawl on Friday. I have signed up Ethan and Ben for the kids races on Saturday morning. They each get a medal. I know they can't wait. Unfortunately, the kids race cut off is 8, so Seth can't participate. In the next few weeks, we will have the team dinner, wear red for training, have a silent mile for those suffering, and we have a jersey decorating session...
I'm really looking forward to the race, having my mom and Annette there cheering me on to the finish line and knowing that I've done something to help. Until next week...
Aug 21, 2011 by Kimberly Matis Friedlander
Well, week thirteen was a whirlwind week... We had a great time at the Melting Pot fundraiser after the last post. The company was wonderful and for a great cause. I think everyone had fun. The following morning my mom was scheduled for her next chemo treatment. She showed up for chemo but not only was she turned away, she was sent straight to the ER across the street and admitted to the hospital. Thursday afternoon I rushed from work to the hospital to find out her blood pressure was 89/50 and that both her white and red blood cell counts were virtually non-existent. Then the 101 fever appeared... She had two units of blood Thursday night and then two again on Friday. They were also giving her shots to help with the generation of white blood cells and an antibiotic to help with the fever and the struggling kidney function. Needless to say, it went from being a fun week to a rough one. Friday night she looked better and we had decided to delay our scheduled vacation and not leave until Sunday morning. I went to training Saturday morning and took out my frustration on the road. Amazingly, without saying a word to any coach, captain or mentor, I arrived at training Saturday morning to questions about my mom. I gave whatever update I had with a warm feeling in my heart. Just when you think your head is going to explode from the frustration, aggravation, feelings of helplessness, and overwhelming weight on your shoulders, it all turns around with a simple question or the time to talk to friends who know what you are suffering from... After training, I got home, showered, saw the family and ran off to the hospital to check on my mom, who looked great. Feeling like we had made the right decision, off we went to Sanibel and Sarasota for a much needed vacation, which ended up riddled with guilt. By Monday morning, she didn't sound so good... The rash which appeared to be from the antibiotic got worse; not better. The bleeding got worse; not better. The fever came back and the voice at the other end of the line wasn't my mom. It was that person I saw admitted on Thursday. Her blood cell counts were up, but something just wasn't right. So, there I was across the state frustrated that I was on vacation, but knew that if I came back early, I was going to throttle someone very soon. I called as often as possible in between Man v. Food stops in Sarasota. Then, Thursday afternoon during our call, I heard the words, urologist, procedure, another transfusion, and biopsy in the same sentence. Time to come home. We packed up the car Friday morning, which also happened to be Benjamin's second birthday, and drove home. I received updates while driving home and scheduled a sitter for both today and tomorrow in the afternoon so I could see mom. Of course, we left Howard in Tampa for a week of work, so a sitter was needed. Anyway, it turns out she had "numerous clots" caused by the chemo. She eventually ended up on the heart floor so they could monitor her heart. I knew she was feeling better when the reports said things like she "ordered" us to call you and the text from my babysitter (I needed to train 10 miles last night with the team) was "Your mom called and her room number is XXX. She wants you to know so you don't worry". Really? When I called this morning asking what to bring, I was told "a nail file, nail clippers, and clear nail polish. My nails look terrible and need help." That's a good sign too. In fact, she hadn't sounded that good in weeks. We were able to giggle and smile together. Made the $ to the sitter and the driving back from vacation early worth it... I just knew she was feeling better when I came home with homework... "Please go home and make brownie covered oreos for the day and night staff of the 8th floor where I was. They took such good care of me and I want them to know I appreciate them". How do you say no to homework like that, right?
The ten miles were painful. In fact, worse than they've been in over a year. I would say the stress and the Man v. Food eating didn't help! I know next week's 8 miles are going to be easy. Why shouldn't they???
If you are on facebook, please look up friends4Liam. Liam's dad and I went to school together in NY. Liam is an amazing kid fighting like a champion. Please see if there's anything you can do for Liam.
So, now that I've written a book tonight, here's a parting picture I took of my mom today. Go mom!
Week Eleven and Twelve!
Aug 10, 2011 by Kimberly Matis Friedlander
So, I guess you could say I dropped the ball last week. No update for me. I was so busy running around that I never sat down and wrote anything. The first time I did sit down, I fell asleep. We did a lovely 8 miles all around a neighborhood I had never seen before. it was quite nice and very Florida style homes, unless you add the monstrosities, Overall, we had a great time training and I enjoyed the course. It was the course we were supposed to do the week before that got stormed out.
The week in between was crazy as usual. Howard worked in Miami and it was month end. That in and of itself, not a big deal. What was the big deal? It was also the first month after the year end so all that turnover stuff had to be done along with the uploading of the budget. So, I had to work early and through lunch every day to leave at 5 to do pick up. It wasn't ideal and I didn't get it all done as quickly as I would have liked, but I eventually got it all done.
We also had a fundraiser that Tuesday. We didn't raise much but it was a chance for everyone to get out and have a great meal at the Beverly Hills Cafe in Cooper City. We enjoyed dinner and had great company.
Training Saturday morning was a short 9 miles. We caught a little bit of rain when we first went out, so sore feet and blisters prevailed. After we got back, we went to our favorite after training place for food - Flashback Diner. We have a server we just love there! His name, according to his name tag, is Land of Oz from Mark. The first week we had him as a server we knew we were sold when he did the Bend and Snap. If you don't know what the Bend and Snap is, rent Legally Blonde and you'll know what it is. Needless to say, he's our favorite!
This week is TNT fundraising week for me... We were at the Beverly Hills Cafe in Plantation before mid week training. The food was delicious as usual and Jen and Ilissa got some fundraising $ from us! We did sprints at the track. Yes, I did sprints. Crazy, eh? I know! I found out that I can run short distances, but they take alot of out of me so I need that walking time to recover enough to do it again! Tonight we are heading to the Melting Pot again for another fundraiser. They have been amazing. Anyone who wants to come is welcome. Please mull it over for dinner tonight!
Until next week....
Jul 24, 2011 by Kimberly Matis Friedlander
So week ten didn't suck! It seriously had the potential. I turned 40 on Tuesday and Ethan turned 6. We went out for hibachi on Tuesday. Unfortunately, mom couldn't come because Ben had stayed home sick with a virus on Monday. Dinner involved a happy 6 year old, fire, and a homemade Pokemon cake made with love.
We had training on Friday night. We were scheduled to do 8 miles starting at 7:30 at night. We made it about three, when while crossing the bridge over Las Olas Boulevard, we spotted lightening and it wasn't heat lightning either! Coach Donna made the call to Karen, our staff coordinator, who started the trek down A1A to pick us up. At first, we were a group of 6, then 10, then 18 who needed picking up. After 6 cars came, we were all back at the start fully rained out. Coach Adriana asked Shari, my friend who I encouraged to sign up, to give the mission moment. I had known her sister had died from Cancer when she was 40, but I had never heard the story... Not until Friday night. Wow. We all cried with her while she told us her story. It was an emotional night.
the pinnacle of my week involved a surprise birthday party thrown by my husband, Howard! Up until the point Annette and I walked into Buca di Beppo, I had decided 40 kinda sucked! Boy, was I surprised when I walked in and there were decorations and a huge table of people there! I couldn't believe it. I had TNT friends, Jen and Coach Donna, along with Donna's boyfriend whom I had only heard about. I had Jennifer from my old job there. There was Andrea and Jason, who are getting married in September and JJ from the convention center. There was Shari and Scott and, of course, Annette and Howard. Our neighbors, Angie and Glenn, were able to get a sitter too! The absolute best part, Mom and Steve were there! I had called my mom earlier in the day and she didn't sound good at all. I had wanted to see her, but didn't think it was going to happen this week. She had had Chemo on Thursday and usually Saturday and Sunday are her bad days. Well, she was there. Chris and Jason were our servers. They were great!
So, 40 doesn't seem to suck... Here's a picture from my party to prove it! Have a great week.