Little Steps: Day 1 – The mile that almost wasn’t

Day 1: 1.12 Miles

My plan for today was to come home after work, run all the puppies, then grab Helios and head to the park.

I have been mentally preparing, and mapping the logistics out, for this day, for about 10 days.

Well, a funny thing happened. A funny thing called life.

My coworkers have been dropping like flies due to the lovely viruses circulating. At levels we have never seen before. It hasnt been an issue. But for some reason, today was different.

I woke up tired. I couldnt get to sleep last night.

I was irritated at all the things. Probably because Aunt Flo has come to visit for the first time in a long long time. Thank you IUD.

Phones rang non stop.

The husband texted me that our girls both still had fevers. One, who rarely gets fevers, was at 103*. The other is on day 3 of a fever (last year, that child experienced what we jokingly refer to as the 9 day fever marathon). So they were at home with Papa.

The email inbox kept growing. We couldn’t move our fingers fast enough to make a dent.

I normally am not phased by a busy day like today. But today, by 9AM, I was daydreaming about running home after work, throwing off my shoes, grabbing my heating blanket and crawling straight in to bed.

Today was the longest week ever.

But the girls were at home. They would probably want to go to the park with me. But they are sick. So I cant take them with me. Maybe I dont need to go for a walk today.

10AM rolls around. Well Fork. I completely forgot I had a last minute meeting scheduled at 245 at the school for E’s IEP.

Ok no big. It will be just a quick in and out. They just want to review what she is qualifying for, for next year, and I will sign it.

I started doing the math in my head. Get home at 2. Run the puppies till 230. School at 245. Home to grab Helios by 330 and then head to the park. I convinced myself that I could take the girls with me if they wanted to and felt up to it. And then we could go to the store to pick up something for dinner.

Fresh air never hurt anyone.

Finally! Its quittin’ time.

I could totally go to the meeting, come home, and just become a couch potato.

Oh, that sounds so glorious.

Maybe watch some Netflix. Read my book. Scroll social media endlessly.


I race home. Stuck behind all the slow people today.

The pups are spoiled. They know when I am running late. They wont let me forget it.

But first, I need to check on my sickly girls.

I open Papa’s door. They aren’t in the living room. Panic begins to creep in. But the living room is a mess. So clearly they had enough energy to have some sort of fun.

And then I hear little feet, running towards me. And laughter. And high pitched squeals.

For sickly kids, they sure do have a surplus of energy. They definitely do not look sick.

Thank goodness. But I could still use the “I have sick kids” excuse and not go out for a walk.

Yeah. That would be an easy coverup. In reality I am just irritated. And pessimistic. And pmsy. And short fused. And blah.

Time for the quick meeting.

It was anything but.

Turns out it was a full IEP meeting. In other words, it’s an hour long meeting discussing my child’s strengths, and weaknesses. Mostly weaknesses. Or so it seems. We spend a lot of time on weaknesses and area of difficulties.

Because duh. IEPs are needed for a reason.

Normally I can mentally prepare myself. This isn’t my first IEP meeting. And definitely not my first annual requalification meeting.

It happens every year. At this time. Duh. I should have realized.

I just spent an hour discussing my amazing child and all of her challenges. It is so hard as a mother, having to sit thru that. Because no matter how much you work on helping your child, challenges continue to persist.

Through hours and hours of hard work, her challenges have lessened. But they still persist.

The meeting ended.

I left defeated.

“Today was the longest week” + “I have sick kids” + “I need to curl in to a ball to soothe my wounds”

Certainly good excuses to NOT go for a walk.

But I forced myself too anyways.

I got home. Filled up my water bladder for my day pack. Grabbed the leash. A couple of doggy bags. And told Helios to load up.

The girls wanted to stay home.

I was totally fine with that decision.

So off Helios and I went.

I knew the path we were going to take. We have done it many times.

I was sore. And tired. And grumpy.

Note to self: I need to do some stretching before setting off.

It was just me and Helios.

And it become pretty apparent, fairly quickly, that him and I were definitely not in sync.

We completely forgot how to walk near eachother. He almost yanked my arm off. A few times.

I often forget how much stronger he is.

He smelled all the smells. He forgot what leave it and on by means.

He wanted me to go faster. I wanted him to slow down.

1 mile was tough.

Thank goodness we have 6 months to prepare.

Note to self: I need to get Helios a harness that doesnt compress his windpipe as he is pulling me up a hill.

We practiced our Gees and our Haws. Our Hikes and our Easies.

Yes. Our dogs practice mushing commands.

We finally made it back to the car.

The final musher crossed under The Burled Arch today. They earned The Red Lantern. Iditarod 2019 is officially completed.

I opened the door. Helios loaded up. Off came my day pack. And I sat down.

I did it. The car door, was my Burled Arch.

I was so focused on getting in sync with my dog.

We have more work to do.

33 mins and 44 secs went by really fast.

P.s. I really need to somehow train him to look at the camera.

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