Sunday, May 19, 2013

Day 99 Seriously, am I really that old?

Got the bike out today and went for a 2 mile ride.  I know!  Its not that far, but more importantly, I did not have to put it in the easiest gear like I did last year and I instantly captured that flying feeling I had when I was a kid and took me 6 months to get to last year!  Whoo Hoo!  Now back to reality...It was only two miles.  And and in between each mile was a visit with Patrick.  And it was on level ground.  But still!

Ok, as most of you know I have been taking ballroom dancing lessons for about 6 months.  My teacher, Vlad, has a split personality between a prick and a dreamboat.  Mostly a prick.  Very hard.  Insistent on technique and dancing professionally.  Each little movement has to be perfect.  I on the other hand, want to blast ABBA and look like the dancing queen.

A couple weeks ago I went with one of my dancing buddies to a professional ballroom competition in Milwaukee.  Vlad had several students competing (all of whom one first place so maybe being a prick pays off) and we went to support him and his group.  Plus I was DYING to see a live competition.  Dancing With The Stars, Midwest version.

Little bit DWTS, little bit Dance Moms and a little bit Honey BooBoo.  And worth every minute.  Beautiful gowns, amazing professional dancers, adorable little kids...the whole scene.  My friend and I, I will call her "J" to protect the innocent, were really looking forward to Saturday night.  This is the professional competition.  Bar.  Formal dress required for the audience.  Bar.  A big night out for us.  Getting dressed up, mingling with dancing stars, fabulous entertainment and a Bar.

J and I each brought 4 outfits for 1 night out.  This was not planned or coordinated ahead of time.  4 outfits.  J brought 6 pairs of shoes and 3 pairs of pantyhose.  I brought 5 bras.  2 were strapless, however none of my 4 outfits were strapless.  I have 2 boobs and 5 bras.

We're like teenagers getting ready for the big excited.  It is at this sad juncture that the reality of aging rears its ugly head.  J can't decide which hose to wear because she needs to strike the right balance between being pretty and sheer and covering up her varicose veins.  It takes me 15 minutes to wiggle, pull, jump, kick my way into my high waisted, control top panty hose.  Getting into nylons, particularly control top, is not something the person you are having sex with should ever see you do.  Because you will never have sex with that person again.  Whatever mystery was left is now history.  Finally J has to pull up the back of my panty hose (the front always comes up fine but the back never does.  Why is that???) so I'm within an inch of having my nether regions bisected by a panty hose seam.  But they stay up by God!

J promptly runs the pantyhose she thought covered her varicose veins the best without looking like WWII support hose.  Luckily she brought "leg make up" to cover up the slight imperfections.  One make up applicator had a sponge tip and did a good job, but looked a little heavy.  That was quickly washed off, but now all the washclothes and towels were stained with leg make up.  The other choice was a spray make up that also worked well, except the spray nozzle was pretty wide and the entire floor, toilet and counter was covered in make up.  I turned around and J was on her hands and knees scrubbing the hotel floor and toilet.  The next morning she smuggled the washcloths out with a couple towels so we wouldn't be charged!

We had a great time!  Cocktails.  Cheering.  Imagining ourselves as the beautiful dancers.  Just a few more lessons with the asshole/dreamboat and we too would be competing, floating across the dance floors with steps so beautiful, so unique, so intricate the judges would surround us after we claimed our prize money, begging to know our secret.  A modest nod to Vlad who looks oh so Russian and oh so handsome in his tuxedo.

The lights come on and we filter out back to our hotel room.  The elevators filled with people recounting every step.  We are still riding high on the beauty of the night.  I gradually become aware of something being wrong with my boobs.  I realize one boob is in a cup and one is not.  One is just lying there in its unsupported splendor.  How the hell did this happen???  J and I step it up a bit in getting back to the room.  I had decided to wear one of the strapless bras to better accentuate my shoulders in my spaghetti strap top.  We enter our room, I pull up my top and one cup has flopped down, docilely lying down against my stomach, leaving my breast to fend for itself.  5 bras and I pick the one that goes on strike.

We are peeing in our pants laughing so hard.  I have a half bra, we turn and look at a bathroom painted in varicose vein cover up make up.  So maybe we aren't exactly like teenagers getting ready for the big dance....

So seriously, are we really getting old?  Who gives a fuck! Bring on the rhinestone, crystals and big fancy dresses!

And the Triathlon!!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Day 117 (Counting down this time) Hi From Patrick (and Mary Jo)

May Day May Day!!!  I know May Day has all sorts of religious and pagan ritual connotations, but I've always associated it with a cry for when the ship is going down.  I am participating in the 2013 Chicago Triathlon since last year was such a huge success!!!  As always however, I need as much help as I can May Day!!

The following is directly from Patrick to all of you:
"Hey gang, slow and steady wins the race.  Both of us.  I just always keep thinking never give up.  And don't worry, this time shall pass. The times when things are hard.  I realize things may not change as fast as I initially thought.  But some day it will be just a short memory."

That's Patrick.  Very rarely discouraged.  Never whines.  Never complains.  Sometimes acts like a little prick, but I'm beginning to think that goes with the territory of being 20 and not having a whole lot of control in your life.  Thank God I can complain and whine for both of us!

Just to recap:
1) 2012 Triathlon completed at the record breaking time of 4hrs 37min (lets not waste a lot of time on exactly which record I broke)
2) Been continuing to ballroom dance since November 3x/wk.  LOVE IT but still cannot breath after about 30 seconds of swing, salsa or cha cha.  Can go about a minute on rumba because its slow.
3) Realize although dancing 3x/wk may bring me to my goal of national ballroom champion at the age of 70, I don't have that long to get in shape for the triathlon.  Let me just state for the record being a national champion is not my goal but I like the way it sounds.  Dancing With The Stars however....
4) Have hired the MOST WONDERFUL TRAINER, Mary Nimrod.  She's local here in Glenview and is fantastic.  I see her 2x/wk.  Between her and Vlad (my Russian dancing teacher who has the patience of a saint even though he drives me crazy) I intend to cut off an hour and a half from my triathlon time and lose 25 pounds.

Done.  Said it.  Put it in writing.

A few updates on Patrick.  Patrick's trach tube was removed in October.  This was a huge step for him and he spent a long, hard year advocating for himself to his doctors.  He is now taking college courses. He's also beginning to see himself as bigger than his injury and thinking about where he will be in the world as a young man.  Thinking about entrepreneurial ventures and what he can contribute to the world.

Patrick and I also performed a stand up comedy routine at the Laughing Chameleon in Glenview in December.  I think I speak for both of us when I say it was a huge success.  If anyone knows anything about editing a DVD let me know.  We have a great video recording of the night but it needs some editing...not every line was a pearl!

                                                      Me and Patrick at the Comedy Club.

So much to talk about since I've been quiet since December.  I'll spread it over a few days.  Your peace and quiet is over!