Running On Average

Getting Personal with My Insides

Because I know that those of you who read this blog, absolutely do it to hear me whine and rant about having ulcerative colitis.

But that’s what I’m going to do – right now anyway. I sort of feel like it’s taken oven a lot of my life recently and I need to vent.

Last time I talked about it, I told you that I got put on a new medicine that was so not working out for me. As a result I only took it two or three times and called it quits.

Two weeks ago, I called my doctor because my symptoms were still hanging around and my hair has been coming out like woah since about 2 months after I started Delzicol in the beginning of the year. He talked me into getting a flex sig (not explaining that, go Google it) to see how my colitis really was doing.

I felt so stupid having to go in for one, like he wasn’t going to find anything and I was just going to be a whining hypochondriac. Because my symptoms aren’t always that bad, but I’m just tired of dealing with them. Turns out, he was really glad I went in for the procedure and he’s surprised that I said I felt as good as I did because it’s worse than he (or I) thought. I confessed that I think I’ve just accepted things as “normal” that aren’t really and just felt like a whiney pants because I do have a disease and need to just get used to it. So turns out that none of that is true.

He told me I could stop taking Delzicol since I told him I feel better without it and I think it’s the cause of my hair issues. He prescribed me Uceris- a prednisone-like steroid without the crazy/bitch personality side effects. He also put me on a low residue diet for the next few weeks until our next appointment. That means only white bread and white bread products, rice and pasta (none of this whole wheat business), no raw veggies, only well-cooked carrots, asparagus and green beans, skinless, seedless tomatoes, well-cooked skinless potatoes, no sweet potatoes, only ripe bananas, peeled canned peaches, pears and mandarin oranges, up to 2 cups of dairy per day, no nuts, no seeds, no nut butters, no coconut, no berries, no dried fruits, no onions or peppers or garlic, no steak or tough meat, no lunch meat (which I don’t like anyway), only mild and well crushed herbs and spices.

It is such a boring diet. And it feels so unhealthy!! But the idea is to eat foods that are easy on the digestive tract and foods that will get mostly absorbed before they reach it. It is meant to give my large intestine a break so that it can heal. Soup is going to become my new BFF. With white bread to dip in it. I made a huge batch of chicken soup last night. (It was my first crack at it and I’ll share it later!)

My poor husband is largely doing this diet with me, although not completely because it wouldn’t be healthy for him, and he is completely on board with it. Whatever I do, he says he’ll do it with me and be there for me. I feel so bad because we got married less than 2 months ago, and this wasn’t supposed to happen…at least not already!

The doctor wants me to meet with him again in a month and talk about possibly going on biologic therapy, which I researched a little and honestly, it really scares me. It seems like it’s for people with severe active colitis and I really don’t think I fall into that category. Plus, the possible side effects just don’t seem pleasant. And although it’s such a low chance, it was mentioned that people on it are a fraction more likely to get lymphoma or leukemia (mainly lymphoma). It’s not even a side effect, just something that has to be stated, but I know too many people who have passed away from cancer, and that scares me so much. Dave did point out that letting it go and continue to flare increases the risk of colon cancer by more, but…I don’t know. That can be isolated and removed easier than cancer in your blood.

So I have been having some fantastic freak out moments the past few days. I’m not ready for a decision like this. Why can’t it just go away??!

How about all you lovely people? Have any of you been on biologic therapy for UC? What are your thoughts?

Our Amazing Wedding – The Reception

Our wedding ceremony was beautiful and sweet and amazing.

Our reception was a freaking blast, a party and a half!

We had it at the Reading Liederkranz, a German Club Haus. There was a separate room for the bridal party and parents upstairs (with our own food!) so we could relax a little before it began.

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Drinking bourbon is a family affair. We requested 2 bottles of Knob Creek, mainly for my parents and I, and it was AWESOME.

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Favors from Alaska

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Table Settings

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Our photographer (whose name is John, btw) started with some pictures outside in the Biergarten.

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And we had the choice of our last formal pictures with a wooded background or on a playset. I believe that we made the right choice…

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Then it was time to get announced! The parents and bridal party came in to the Allman Brothers’ “Jessica” and Dave and I walked in to American Authors’ “Best Day of My Life.” Fun Fact: That song was playing on the radio when we got in the car after he proposed. J

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Our first dance was Kip Moore’s “Hey, Pretty Girl.” Dave got choked up. J

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Followed by dinner!! I have no pictures of this, but it was delicious! We had a buffet and our caterers, who were the head chef of the Liederkranz and his wife, know what’s up. Oh man!

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Speeches! My dad has a knack for writing and gave the most incredible, heartfelt and funny toast I’ve ever heard. This time it was my turn to get choked up!

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Dave’s brother Steve, who was the best man, gave nice funny and sincere toast….

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…followed by my sisters (matron and maid of honor) giving a joint toast that was equal parts sweet, sarcastic and silly and absolutely their personalities.

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Then my daddy-daughter dance to Trace Adkins’ “Just Fishin.” He sang to me while we were dancing and it was so sweet.

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Dave and his mom danced to Louis Armstrong’s “Wonderful World.”

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And then we had a surprise. My older sister, Rhi, got married at a JOP in Alaska and never got to have her daddy-daughter dance. So my dad, Dave and I conspired and surprised her with a daddy-daughter dance of her own at our wedding. I totally choked up announcing this and couldn’t finish giving the rest of my little speech.

She cried a lot, too. It was a really special part of the day.

They danced to Doobie Brothers’ “Far From Home.”

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Then it was just a helluva party. The dance floor was never empty and everyone was having a terrific time. It was amazing to see and celebrate with so many friends and family.

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The bouquet toss was great. Ronnie caught it, but being 16, handed it to Steph who also had a hand on it (okay, technically they both dropped it and Ronnie picked it up). Dave’s one frat brother, Geoff, caught the garter and as a joke, Steph’s boyfriend, who’s a tall guy, kind of towered over Geoff as he put the garter on Steph’s leg.

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Dave’s frat brothers did their traditional, awkward, hilarious karaoke to Macy Gray’s “I Try.” If you know they are going to do it, you look forward to it. Everyone else is just like, “wait, what?!”

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(note the wives just standing around watching them^)

My dad later bragged to his boss and coworkers about how his daughter danced in a wedding dress to “Cotton Eyed Joe,” full glass of bourbon in hand the whole time without spilling a drop. I got an ovation. Thank you, thank you very much.

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We almost did “Don’t Stop Believing” as our first dance. Dave and I have history with it that dates back to the first time we dated. So of course that came out and was PHENOMENAL.

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Then the night ended on a great high note with “Shout.”

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I still cannot get over how absolutely perfect our wedding day was. It was everything I hoped for and more. It was just a constant high the entire day and I know that Dave and I are very lucky of that. I remember sitting in the limo next to my husband and with our closest friends on the way to the reception, just thinking that this is incredible, unreal. It’s the happiest I have ever been and I still can’t get over it.

We enjoyed it to the fullest and oh my gosh, I am so so happy.

All of our vendors were completely kick ass. Here is a list of them, and if you have any questions about them, let me know!

Reception Hall and Catering – Reading Liederkranz, Robin and Marlis Pritz

Photographer – Secoges Photographics, John Secoges

DJ – The Party People, Bob Tier…Our DJ was Jack, who was a little older, but totally nailed it. How many people can flawlessly incorporate Fat Bottom Girls, Cotton Eyed Joe, The Beer Barrel Polka, Taylor Swift, Macy Gray, and Sweet Home Alabama? Not Many.

My Wedding Dress – Cocoa Couture

Cupcake Cake – The Well Dressed Cake

Limousine – Infinity… Okay, our driver was pretty bad (he missed the turn into the church twice and went the wrong way down a one way road, AND we had to give him turn by turn directions to the reception), BUT we used this company for my bachelorette party and that driver was great.

Our Amazing Wedding!–The Ceremony

On Monday, Dave and I celebrated our 1-month anniversary. It wasn’t anything huge…I made dinner and we had wine and dessert, decorated the tree. I got a little wood train ornament for him with our last name and the year on it. He loves trains. So much. Nerd. 😉

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But let’s hop back in time one month to our wedding day. I woke up at 6am and my mom basically forced me back to bed. So I laid in bed for an hour or so then got back up and bounced into her room like when I was five. Then went into my little sister’s (the maid of honor) room and pounced on her bed. So. Much. Energy.

My bridesmaids and I had hair appointments at 9am at Boscov’s. I used to work in the advertising department there, so we got our hair done at their salon. I also got my nails done there with my sisters that Thursday. For as shaky as I was the rest of the morning from excitement and anxiousness, sitting in the chair and letting Michelle do my hair was so relaxing!

My mom picked the four of us up afterward and we went to my Grandmom’s house to get ready.

Let the pictures begin!

Danielle just bought Taylor Swift’s 1989 and we had a dance party the whole time.

The photographer made it his mission to get pictures of all my girls eating. One:

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Getting pretty!

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Two:

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And three. Success:

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Me and my Mommie

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The Boys Looking Dashing

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My Smoking Hot Husband Smile

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My excitement was out of control and I was in the best mood ever.

When we got to the church, we were sitting in this little side room and I was just jittery. Not nervous, just excited! Then I heard that my dad’s boutonniere wasn’t at the church…I had left it at my Grandmom’s house!! I felt so bad even though everyone told me it was no big deal. He ended up taking the ring bearer’s boutonniere (his 3 year old grandson). Then he and my mom came in the little room and sat with us until…Gasp!…it was time.

My nephew decided he “couldn’t” walk down the aisle as the ring bearer. The result was adorable and made me laugh so hard.

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The ceremony was beautiful and perfect. Oh so perfect. Neither of us cried, although the tissues were ready. And oh my gosh, that first kiss. <3

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Afterward, the bridal party minus Peyton went to Daniel Boone homestead for photos. It was so cold! But totally gorgeous.

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We were cold, so we used the train of my dress to keep warm…

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The limo ride to the homestead and the reception was a blast and I just couldn’t get over everything. It was OUR day. WE just got married. US. Everyone was here and celebrating US. After 13 years.

Next up…the reception! The most epic party that was deemed to be as good as my parents’ reception (which people still talk about 30 years later for its awesomeness).

New and Renew

It’s been month or two since I’ve written and as you knew I was getting ready for my wedding. My wedding day was the Best. Day. Of. My. Life. Hands down, no contest. It was perfect in every possible way.

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But that will get its own entry, complete with many more pictures, later. So stay tuned.

I feel like since then I’ve gotten a lot of newness in my life. Not just a new husband and new gifts, but a lot of changes, big and small.

1. I have a new last name. Yesterday I went to the Social Security Office and DMV and legally got it changed to match Dave’s. Which is just downright crazy to see. I have to admit, I had a hard time letting go of my maiden name. I’ve identified with it for 27 years…I’ve grown attached to it! But my new last name actually isn’t too different. They both contain the word“Hart” (Mine ended with it, his began with it.) so it’s been the running joke to just combine our last names and create a new one. But I am very excited and happy to take his name!!

2. I have a new haircut. A few days after we got back from our honeymoon I went to the hair salon and donated my hair. I got 12 inches cut off!

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Now it rests just above my shoulders and is sooooo much easier to brush. But it takes a little longer to style because one side curls under nicely, while the other side insists on flipping out. So the straightener and I are building a relationship. Oh and I’m not ashamed to admit I showed the stylist this picture to use for direction (with way less bangs, obviously):

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3. I got a new iphone. Not a huge change, but hey, the 5S is lighter than the 4! And it’s always a good way to purge your phone of all those pictures that you just don’t have the heart to delete (even though they are on your computer).

4. I started the second year of my job and got a new cube. Tuesday was the 1-year anniversary for me at my job and I also switched cubicles because someone new is going in my old one. It was a nice cube…I’ll miss it and its proximity to the exit door. Haha But seriously, even just switching cubes feels a little bit like a chance at a new start and to reenergize and reorganize myself in my job.

5. I registered for my next marathon.

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Training for marathon #3 doesn’t begin until February, but it’s official and paid so now I can’t back out. It’s the Hatfield & McCoy Marathon down in Kentucky and is supposed to be super tough and hilly and hot…but I’m not going for ease and speed this time. I want the experience. Don’t think that means I won’t train my ass off, though!

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^Holy hill!

6. I have a new husband. And he is the most perfect man in the world. I’ve known him since I was 14 years old and we’ve been friends, dating, or awkwardly in between since then. It feels like a fairy tale to me and I am so so blessed that God led me down this road.

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^Dave and I…in 11th grade and on our honeymoon.

It’s fun to feel renewed every now and then, and offers a good time to turn your life and outlook new ways. Maybe a new way of eating or workout routine. Or making plans to change your after work schedule (and not sit on the couch all night).

And maybe it’s not the best time to make huge life changes with the holidays coming and January is usually when we try to renew ourselves, but why wait? Or at the least make some goals or think or what you want to renew. And I’ve learned it doesn’t have to be immediate. My new life has been gradual and I’m certain new things are still on the horizon.