Finding my Rainbow – and a Giveaway!

“Sometimes it’s hard to see the rainbow when there’s been endless days of rain.” – Christina Greer, Two-Week Wait: Motherhood Lost and Found

Last week was filled with more rain.

There’s still a lot I want to explain after my post late in September… as in, how did all of this start, and my gosh! how did it snow ball SO quickly?!? Bi-polar? Post-Partum depression? Alcoholism? Psychiatric wards? But, just as I think I have time to pause, reflect on and explain pieces of that journey, well,

the journey continues.
I miscarried last week.
Friday the 2nd I went into the clinic for an ultrasound, and was given the most joyous news! They found a heartbeat! Prior to that appointment, we were told there was a 95% chance I would miscarry. The news was heavy, but I carried it with a glimmer of hope, and now – that hope was a little human inside of me, beating at 108 bpm!
Fast forward to Tuesday the 6th. I went in to Bethel for my first day of work. It is so great there! I am so blessed to have found such a perfect position and staff to work alongside! The day was hectic, as all first days are. Afterwards I came home and met Jeff for his last tempo effort before Chicago. He looked amazing, cruising along effortlessly with a ridiculously enormous grin on his face. I love coaching 🙂. I logged 10 easy miles while he did his workout so I was able to watch and cheer. 
That evening I was exhausted and not feeling myself. I didn’t have the energy to much of anything, even putting Greta into bed. Was it because of the long day? Probably, I told myself. I also noticed I was spotting, and I could tell my stomach was bloated. Or was this bloating really me starting to show? I wasn’t sure.

Her in yellow = reminds me of her endless sunshine!
Wednesday morning I went into work as normal, but what happened was not normal. “This is not good, this is not good”, I repeated to myself as tears streamed down my face. I called the clinic and they brought me in for an ultrasound. I held back tears until the OBGYN came in to tell me the news.
“How could this happen?”
I repeated questions over and over while she tried to explain things.
We just found a heartbeat after all! How? Why?
Was it because I over did it on Tuesday? Oh, no, why did I push myself to my limit yesterday? Oh, nooo…
I sobbed.
The following days were draining, and eventually I passed the fetus. I was not mentally prepared for that, and especially not for that to happen right before we left for our Chicago Marathon road trip. I didn’t think of what continuing on the trip would mean. I was in a car with 3 guys, all of who knew what was happening, but they really didn’t know. I put on a good face for a while, but asked Nate to stop at one point during the trip. I felt like running away. Instead I brought my knees to my chest and covered my face while I cried. Why hadn’t I allowed myself to miss carry like a “normal” person? At home, where I’d have time to grieve? 
Nate asked, “How does a normal person have a misscarriage?”. It was an appropriate question. There is no normal, and it’s always hard. Very hard.
I know miscarriages are common; 25% of all pregnancies end in one. That’s such a large number! I have so much respect for any women and families that have gone through this. We are stronger together, and while I’m leaning on their stories and comfort now, I look forward to the days when I can help someone else through their own loss.
I believe it was a girl. That’s what God told me during my manic episode. We named her Margaret Ann Porath, and buried her Wednesday night. 
She had a beating heart for 5 days, which I knew she fought to grow so that she’ll live forever with God. I can’t wait to meet her, someday.
And now for recent pictures, in no particular order:

Enjoying ice cream with my love and absolute best friend

Jeff the night before his marathon, reviewing his fueling plan for the marathon. Always, always have a plan! Once the gun goes off, you adapt, but having a plan can help prevent a lot (forgetting to hydrate early, not taking a gel because you don’t feel “hungry”… until your energy tanks & it’s too late, etc)

Miss Greta Margaret turned 1 this Thursday, 10/15! I am so in LOVE with being her mom! She has been one of my brightest rainbows lately 🙂

Birthday cake! It was late, she was tired… Carrot cake made from the carrots from our CSA. It was great!
Nathan and I recently tried out Jiva Bites, a local business that prepares and delivers 2-3 meals to your doorstep every week. We love it! Each meal is cheaper than the cost of going out to eat, and is completely chopped, measured, and ready for you to prepare. This way, we can grab one of these meals when things are hectic, instead of ordering a pizza or not making much at all (“fend for yourself” night!).
This way, we’re still showing Greta that dinner is something to be made and sat down to enjoy. Plus, it’s all healthy, very high quality, mostly organic and local. It is worth the splurge, definitely! If you decide to give it a try, please tell them you heard about them here. I’d feel really good about sending some business her way!
Enjoying Chickpea Curried Squash Soup w/ Ciabatta bread, one of our Jiva Bites meals!We both love it! Seriously, we had two bowls of leftover soup and they didn’t make it to 11am the next day 🙂
Too cute!
Jeff finished in 2:47 on a really tough day. This guy is tough as nails. He had stomach issues from the beginning, wilted a little from the heat, and by the time he could think about taking any fuel in, he was too far gone to do anything about it. But, he gutted it out, and ran a FREAKISHLY awesome 2:47. Not too shabby for a really off day, eh? 🙂

Playing at Grandma and Grandpa’s house while we were in Chicago.
For her birthday, I picked her up from school early so we could go to the CSA together. She downright cackled at the cats, loved helping pick out our squash, and wasn’t really a fan of the U Pick brussel sprouts. It was a really fun way to spend our afternoon!
Last, but NOT least, on to our giveaway! For the chance to win the second $50 Cafe Zupas gift card, caption any of the pictures below. The best caption, as voted on by both my father and Nathan on Sunday 10/16, will win! You can caption all three pictures for three chances to win. Please identify the picture number when you enter, and if entering for multiple pictures, post each entry as a separate comment.
I’m not sure what kind of comment my dad and husband will choose as the winner… witty? Funny? Cute? Ironic? A look-alike picture w/ caption?
And, since your gift card will buy you more than 5 of their awesome Pick 2 lunches, I’m offering enjoy one of those lunches with you to talk running, coaching, training, racing, etc if you would like. You don’t have to! It’s essentially a free coaching consult ($100 value) to accompany your free $50 gift card! You could gift that lunch “date” to someone else who may be thinking about coaching or scheming about their next training cycle!
So, even if you’re not from MN or there isn’t a Cafe Zupas near you, I’m sure you know of someone that might be that you could either gift just the gift card to, or gift the card and a “coaching date”. Ready, set, go: enter below! Good luck!!
Photo #1
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Photo #3

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  1. Way to go, Jeff! You totally rocked Chicago. Can't believe how fast you've gotten!!

    The lunch at Cafe Zupas sounds divine, but a consult with my favorite coach would be even more of a treat. I have scheming to do! Here are my attempts:

    #1 "I may be cute, but I'm tough!"
    #2 Ready for a night at the Playboy Mansion
    #3 "Hmmm, I like the curly tail, but I don't know about that snout."

    On the serious side, I'm so sorry to hear the news about your miscarriage. The sadness is real and warranted. I hope you give yourself time to grieve. Keep that beautiful ray of sunshine close–no doubt that Greta's sweet smile can help keep those rain clouds at bay. Amy Olson

  2. No captions at the moment, just big, big love to you both. Wish I would have known last week while I was in the office to give you a big, we've been there hug. Consider this your rain check for Tuesday!!!!!

  3. Here goes my noncreative attempt! But I want the coaching consult!
    1: should I cheer or fight?
    2: I guess I ran out of fabric!
    3: hmm, these don't look like my dog!

    So sorry to hear of your miscarriage, take time to grieve however you feel right.

  4. I pray these experiences make you stronger in your faith and as a person. I cannot even fathom what you have gone through!! I am so glad God has blessed you with a wonderful husband and easy, happy baby.

  5. #1. Really Jefferton is coming to visit?! I hope he brings me grahmcrackers for supper again

    #2. Its pictures like this that make me lose faith in humanity.

    3. This isn't where I parked my car.

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