Tricky Territory

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It’s three o’clock in the morning and I’m sitting in the warm spot on the couch where Scout was sleeping before he heard me sneak down the stairs.

He must have jumped down when he heard me bumbling around in the dark and is currently looking up at me groggily from his new lesser station in life on the floor as I type.

He’s probably wondering when I’ll come to my senses and go back to bed so that he can climb back to his warm forbidden spot.

But it won’t happen, not tonight anyway.

You see, he wasn’t the only one trespassing  throughout the night. Just one hour earlier Penelope had made her way into our bed where she initially snuggled the sucker who invited her in (Brent) and eventually made her way to the soft comfort of her reluctant mother (me).

I’m not going to lie, a part of me likes it too- the sweet warmth from her tiny little body. Then the other part of me (the part that got her boob elbowed five times and her hair pulled twice) just wishes the kid could sleep through the night.

Initially I tried to go back to sleep while I felt her wiggle and grunt next to me. But before I knew it my brain had begun to roil around in my head playing out all kinds of scenarios about life. What I had and hadn’t done, what I wanted to do, what I needed to do.

Apparently I wasn’t the only one pondering life because within the darkness I heard a little voice next to me say, “Mommy, did you know that I’ve never been on a roller coaster ride?” I giggled and made a mental note to take her sooner than later, but refused to fall prey to the conversation that would surely open the door to more sleeplessness.

I eventually put her back to bed, but I had given up any hope that I would ever go back to sleep.

Since going back to work after my surgery, I’ve gotten sucked back into my routine of all work and no play. I had a lot of catching up to do upon my arrival. When I’m not working, I spend my weekends preparing for the next week ahead.

There is no such thing as sleeping in at my house so I usually spend Saturday mornings meal planning and spilling coffee on my planner, while Penelope plays with legos.

After grocery shopping in my pajamas Penelope and I will then usually spend the rest of the morning making home made snacks for the family.

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Brent is in paramedic school now which means he doesn’t work on shift anymore. This also means I have a hungry man in my house at all times. Since packaged foods advertised as unprocessed packaged foods are so expensive I make my own. Here’s what is typically on my weekend repertoire…

1. Chewy No-Bake Cinnamon Cranberry Granola Bars

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Technically, I was only successful making these once. The other two times it wouldn’t stick together. But boy, that one time was tasty enough to make me keep trying until I get it right again.

2. No Bake Energy Bites

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This is Brent’s favorite post-workout snack. It’s also his favorite post-study, post-shower and post-watched-some-TV snack as well.

3. Baked Chicken Breast

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I’ve been roasting up a couple of pounds of chicken every weekend as well. I’ll use it throughout the week in dinners that require cooked chicken, salads for lunch and it also serves as another man snack for Brent who lives off of meat, and meat, and no bake energy bites.

4. Healthy Banana Bread or other muffins.

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I always make a batch of healthy muffins for an easy snack or breakfast for the girls during the week as well. We switch it up every week and use the heart shaped muffin tins that Penelope insisted we buy.

Despite the fact that I’ve been working hard at eating clean I’ve still gained a few pounds in the last month. I’m hoping that it is mostly just me building my leg muscles back up from after my surgery. I didn’t gain a ton of weight post surgery like I was afraid I would but I lost so much muscle mass my legs don’t even look like they belong to me anymore.

My first full week back to work I was scheduled to go to Outdoor Lab which is like a mountain retreat for the sixth graders. This is a right of passage for all of the kids who go to school in my district. I wasn’t cleared to go yet so my Girls on the Run co-coach offered to go for me. This meant I would have to teach her class… P.E.

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I actually had a blast that week “teaching” the kids how to play flag football. However, I wasn’t quite prepared for how to navigate the tricky territory of telling middle schoolers what to do with their balls. I winced every time I caught myself saying phrases like, “Okay guys, hold your balls!”

Bridget is a student assistant during the time that I taught gym and would come and visit me every now and then. I’m also pretty sure she came in to scope out a cute boy or two. So in that case, I did what any self respecting mother would do…

I embarrassed her by taking pictures.

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“Oh. Em. Gee. Mom… What are you doing?!”

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“Ehhhhh… I’m going to act real awkward now.”

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“Just kidding. You can’t make things any more awkward for me. I’m in middle school! Nice try though.

While I was teaching gym the other P.E. teacher told me that they had old spin bikes sitting in a closet that nobody uses. Later on that day I was talking with our facility manager about the bikes and asked if we had one in our make shift teacher lounge gym.

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The next morning I came in to find that they had joined forces and put one of the bikes in my class room to help me with my recovery! Isn’t that the coolest thing ever?!

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The kids think it’s hilarious when I get on it during class discussions. I also thought I could let the kids take turns using it when they need a little brain break. I hop on it during my planning period and check my emails on my iPad on it first thing in the morning.

My limp is almost completely gone now, but I’ve been warned not to over do it for fear of a set back in my recovery. It’s almost been three months since I had my tibial tubercle osteotomy. It’s hard not to be impatient. I’m so ready to be normal again.

4 thoughts on “Tricky Territory

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