Post-vacation thoughts

From Erin: I think I may be more excited for Steve to do this run with Rowan than he is. Of course, I am not a runner and will not have to do any of the training, so this half marathon will be a breeze for me! Steve’s been a runner since he was in high school. When we began dating, he wasn’t running. He denies it to this day, but he was pretty scrawny and wasn’t nearly as muscular as he is now. Anyway, one afternoon he said he wanted to go for a run. He came back energized having run eight miles. Who does that? He’s been running off and on since.

Most of Steve’s training this year has been indoor running for obvious reasons. I’m excited for the spring to come so he can get outside and so we can see what Rowan will think of the jogging stroller and of the whole process. We haven’t even selected a stroller yet, in fact. I received word a few days ago that the Fargo Marathon along with Sheels will provide us with a functional jogger for Rowan that will give him the support he needs to be comfortable. How generous. We thank them both very much. I’m curious to see how he will feel in it and whether he’ll enjoy being outside in the spring and summer as much as we do. I’ll be sure to post photos as soon as we select one.

Because of Rowan’s Lissencephaly, he hasn’t gotten out much. We’ve only recently gotten a wheelchair specially fitted to him. It is sitting in our closet. With so much snow outside, it doesn’t make much sense to put him in it on his short trips to the car. Instead, we’ve been lugging him here and there- but most of his life has been spent at home or at his caregiver, Janet’s, house. I don’t even think I’ve really thought about that- and it makes me terribly sad. He cannot get too hot in the summer- he isn’t as able to regulate his temperature as we are. He cannot play out in the snow, so there goes any fresh air in the wintertime. I think what I want most for him in the next couple of months is for him to feel what it’s like to go fast. I want him to feel the warm air on his face and to see as much as he can see the flickers of sunlight through the green leaves. I want him to hear birds chirp and kids play and to have a little while each day when he is as close to a typical kid as possible.

I’m not sure if he’s aware that he isn’t typical. What I do know is that he is trapped in a growing body with very weak muscles, poor vision, and a brain that isn’t capable of keeping up. He cannot sit, he often times cannot hold his own head up, he has Cortical Visual Impairment, so only he knows what he can and cannot see. He cannot eat normal foods, he cannot hold his own bottle, he cannot talk. The list of cannots goes on and on. This run, though, is something he can do- with his dad’s help. He can get out and feel the crispness of spring, the heat of summer, the constant North Dakota winds.

This will be good for him. It will probably be better for me, though. Steve and I are in the Denver airport right now waiting for our flight home to Fargo. We got married a few days ago right outside of Jackson Square and have spent the last 5 days eating everything in sight.

I went for a couple of walks and Steve a couple of runs. I think we’re both sitting here feeling pretty darned chubby. He’ll get out running again and will be back to normal in no time. I, on the other hand, need to get to work, too. I’m terribly out of shape and constantly have backaches and issues with all of the muscles I use to care for Rowan. I need to take much better care of myself physically.

So here’s my plan, folks: I’m starting yoga and walking when we get home. That way the boys won’t be the only ones getting exercise. Who knows, maybe I’ll get Lily in on some yoga with me. I bet she’ll really like that! I’ll keep you all in the loop.

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