Wednesday, July 13, 2016


Last winter I shared about each of my children and my fabulous husband and all that they have done to help me on my journey to be a healthier me.

I have been blessed with some pretty amazing friends through this journey.  Some have been my friends from the beginning, some became my friends along the way and others have touched my life briefly but left a large print on my heart.

Dwayne and Faylene.  These two have been our friends since we moved to Albany.  Leaving the community that we loved and were firmly entrenched in was difficult. I am so grateful that we met these two wonderful people right away.  We "blame" our boys for our friendship as Taylor and Cody became friends in 7th grade.  There have been a lot of adventures with the entire Gardner family over the years.  I love the entire family and love that I get to be the "other mother" to the boys.
January 20, 2013 - Cascade 10k for me, 1/2 Marathon for Faylene.  It poured rain!
Faylene has been right there with me from the time I first laced up my running shoes. When I first got started she would go with me and push me to do more than I thought I could.  We would go from street corner to street corner or to the next mailbox or she would run ahead and then come back and meet up with me.  Always with a smile and a "You are doing great!" comment. I don't know if she has any idea how much that helped me keep moving when I first started out.
August 3, 2013 - Cascade Lakes Relay
January 1, 2014 - Hangover Run.  Getting ready for the Beer Mile
Dwayne is the captain of our team for Cascade Lakes Relay.  (Go Super Team Dwayne!!)  He never once has made me feel like I shouldn't be part of the team.  I tried to wiggle my way out of it the first year because I was (am) so slow compared to everyone else.  He said something along the lines that it was about being a team and having fun, not how fast we finished and I need to shut up about it.  So I shut up about it.  lol  I have done the race four times.  I am always the very slowest on the team but every year I get a little teeny bit faster.  Because Dwayne has seen the effort and progress over the years he is great about noticing and reminding me how far I've come.  Helps me keep it in perspective.
November 27, 2014 - Thanksgiving Day Run
November 27, 2015 - Dwayne and I did the walk with Bailey
January 1, 2015 - First Beer Mile for these two.
January 1, 2015 - So many friends & family in this picture!  I love them all!!
January 11, 2015 - Hiking with Dwayne & Faylene and the pups. 
April 12, 2015 - First run after finishing my Master's degree.  
May 17, 2015 - Yearly tradition.  Faylene & I go to Bauman Farms for our BIG flower baskets.
May 27, 2015 - Top of Black Butte.  Not a long hike but a tough one.  
May 27, 2015 - Detroit Lake girls weekend with my bestie.
Bowling-Halloween 2015
Day after Christmas hike with Dwayne, Zack, Faylene, Joe and the pups.  :-)
The Gardner & Van V clans at the 2016 Hangover Run (only missing Zack)
Cheering on my BFF at her awesome Crossfit Bikini competition-May 14, 2016
Oh ya!  Annual Flower run 2016
Day at the Lake-May 29, 2016
Blue Lake Sprint Triathlon 2016 with my awesome sherpa!
When Joe couldn't come with me to the Blue Lake Triathlon I told Faylene and she didn't miss a beat.  "I will come with you!  I'll drive and everything!"  Then it got closer to race day and I find out that Dwayne was coming along too.  When I thanked him for coming with me and driving he smiled and said, "Well, of course!"  Seriously!  They didn't think twice about coming along and it meant so much to have them along, helping me out and cheering me on.  

I have learned on this journey that a great support team helps tremendously.  I am blessed to have a wonderful husband and kids that have always been supportive.  I am ridiculously blessed by so many friends that encourage and support me.  Faylene and Dwayne are at the very tip top of that list.  Every crazy thing I have decided to try they have been right there, cheering me on and believing in me.  

When I first signed up for the Tri at the Grove Faylene looked at her calendar to make sure she could go.  She was supposed to work.  Darn it!  A few weeks later she told me that she had gotten things arranged so that she could be there because she wasn't missing it.  I know that was not easy for her to make happen.  I'm pretty sure it took some major finagling to make it work.  She made it seem like it wasn't a big deal, but I know better.  Coming to cheer someone on at a triathlon is really a lot of sitting around waiting to see your person for a few moments during the transitions.  Faylene has already been to two of my triathlons this spring and will be giving up another Saturday to cheer me on for the "big" one.   

I wrote most of this blog last night.  I had a lot of fun looking at pictures and loving all the adventures I have with these amazing friends.  This morning I get this text.

See?  I love this woman!!

Thank you Dwayne & Faylene for

  • Believing in me even when I don't believe in myself.
  • Holding up a mirror and reminding me of how far I have come.
  • Laughter...Lots and lots of laughter!
  • Putting up with the tears and frustrations.  
  • Understanding that sad times happen and loving me through it instead of walking away.
  • Never ever making me feel like I have to be perfect. I just have to be me.  
  • Including me on adventures that many people would have not thought I could do.
  • Being amazing friends.

I love you both!!

No comments:

Post a Comment