Monday, May 17, 2010

i fell into a burning ring of fire

This weekend was one I've been looking forward to for awhile. M wanted to do a triathlon so we chose one in a perfect location: the beach. And because he was doing a triathlon, I was like, heck, I'll just do a 5k, why not? Um, because I have 4 kids and no babysitter, that's why not. Thankfully my good friend K was up for doing a 5k too, and decided to do it with me. But, between the 2 of us we have 5 kids, and that didn't really work either. So the plan was to put one of my babies and her baby in one of our joggers* and then to put W and CB in the other**, and then for me to wear the other baby on my back***. It was a flawless plan, except, M and I forgot to put the handlebar to one of the joggers in the car before we left, and didn't realize it until we were 2 hours into the 4 hour drive. Awesome.

I didn't want K to have to push the weight of W and CB in a busted up stroller, so I pushed them, or rather yanked them, with MJ on my back. Pushing a jogger w/ 70 pounds without a handle bar is rough, let me tell you. I was fully expecting to get last place but to our surprise, we finished in 47 minutes and ended up pacing a firefighter doing the 5k in full gear. He was the only person out there who was just as crazy as we were and I have nothing but respect for him because at 7:30 am, it was already 83 degrees out. In all, it was so fun but next time we are going to remember that darn handle bar. I'm pretty sure I could have cut at least 5 minutes off our time if it wasn't so hard to push that thing. K was such a trooper and put up with me slowing down and speeding up every 20 seconds and fielding all of the "OH MY GOD! Are they TWINS?!?" questions while she was pushing her baby and A. It was, selfishly, really nice having someone else deal with that for a day. We drew so much attention it was almost comical, but I guess that is what is to be expected when you are walking around at a 5k looking like this:
(thanks, K, for this picture! It makes me laugh!)

After the we finished the 5k and M finished the triathlon we hit the beach. It was the first time A and MJ had been and A took to it like the beach baby I knew she was. MJ wasn't impressed. She did the same thing CB did as a baby and curled her toes when they hit the sand and refused to touch the stuff, although she did crawl for the first time while in her little shade dome. It was so nice to be on the beach again. M and I both crave the beach so to feel the air and hear the waves, feel the sun and the sand was just what we needed.

The next morning we decided to go back to the beach and started getting the kids ready. Everyone got lathered up with sunscreen and I put it on my face and arms, my back, and got the back of my legs... and then someone started crying and I got distracted and then got distracted doing something else... and then we went to the beach. We spent a couple of hours there until the epic meltdowns began and then decided to leave. Got in the car to make the 4 hour drive home... and my legs started itching, which I thought was from the sandflies biting me... and then they started burning... and 2 hours into the drive I looked like this:
Sun poisioning. We literally watched it spread as we were driving. Chills, fever, nausea, sensitivity to temperature changes, small blister like bumps... it was horrible. And there was nothing I could do about it because we were driving through the middle of freaking nowhere, on a Sunday, in a state where pretty much everything is closed on Sundays in a small town. My only option was to hit up the Dollar General in one town we passed and pray they had some kind of burn relief. Oh, and did they have some. Knock off "aloe". I would have been better off without it, as the 2nd ingredient was alcohol and it was green from Blue #something and Yellow #whatever. Funny enough, I missed rubbing it into a spot on my foot and when I found that spot 30 minutes later, my food was dyed green. Fantastic. My favorite part of that picture is the hilarious white line that goes across the top of my belly-- clearly need to do some more situps and cardio to get rid of that lovely little space where the skin meets when I sit... yo.

Now, the above picture doesn't really show my true pastiness as the color is quite off, but it is bad. Really bad. Just 2 hours earlier on the beach I had looked like this:
Holy Mother. This. Hurts. I always thought people in the movies were being dramatic when they got a bad sunburn and laid on the couch all day with tea bags over their eyes. Puh Lease. It can't hurt that bad! Oh, but it does, folks, it does. And the best part about it is when people stop you in the store or parking lot to tell you just how sunburned you are. REALLY?! So that's why I feel like the fire of a thousand suns is raging through my veins?? THIS IS BRAND NEW INFORMATION!! Thank you SO much for telling me that is why I feel like a billion needles are poking into my legs and belly at once. Helpful!! Seriously, you want to be helpful? Go get me a cold compress and an iced tea. Why do you think I'm here in Target at 8:52 at night, 8 minutes before they close, sprinting through the store like I'm on Supermarket Sweep, desperately trying to find any kind of remedy to get me through the night??

I'm all about the natural remedy and having never had a sunburn this bad since I was, I don't know, 12? I called my friend J, who is the queen of unintentional sunburns, and begged for advice. I had already googled "natural sunburn relief" and came across a site that claimed you already had the ingredients as close as in your fridge and kitchen cabinets. SWEET! That's what I needed... but after they listed the typical aloe, they went into how you can put mustard or white vinegar on your skin and that would help (um, no.) and then they said that Emu oil is great(!) for sunburns. Yes, because I have Emu oil hanging out in my kitchen cabinet. Really, I do. Thankfully J called me back and walked me through the steps of nursing your skin damage back to a somewhat repaired state: lots of water, gatorade, lotion and aloe, ibprofen and for the love of God, don't let anyone touch you. I also picked up some Vit E oil and have been slathering that crap on in ridiculous amounts.

After a very long night I'm getting better-- now it only hurts when I walk or stand and the blood rushes to the skin but I'm still walking like a zombie and leather couches are NOT my friend. As I'm writing this I can hear my Aunt K in my head. She has always warned us about being smart in the sun and I'm hesitant to even post this blog because I know it is going to freak her out something fierce. I am making an appointment w/ a dermatologist to get my skin checked for any sings of abnormality as skin cancer is on both sides of my family. This is not something to mess with. Lord knows I don't want to end up looking like Donatella Versace and I really don't want skin cancer. So mothers, heed my advice. 1) Don't get distracted while putting on sunblock and 2) if you are using birth control pills, read that little insert with all of the side effects. Apparently one of them is increased sensitivity to sun. Things that would have been nice to know YESTERDAY!

*Chariot CX2
**Chariot Cougar2 (full reviews and comparison for both strollers coming soon!)
***Macpac Child Carrier


girlsmom said...

Who is looking at your legs?? That tummy housed two babies less than a year ago! Hot dog, girl, you look great!

Oh, and sorry about the burning. I am a sunscreen freak, needing to avoid that at all costs!

Hilary said...

Ack, Jo, that's terrible! But I had to laugh when I got to the part about "Aunt K". SO true. I still have her voice going through my head whenever I don a swimsuit and make sure to lather up. And if I don't lather up enough and end up with a sunburn, I actually get scared (and you'd think that would have stopped by age 29!). I'm sure you'll be fine though, once the intense pain dies down -- one bad burn every once in awhile shouldn't turn you into Donatella Versace. Boy does it suck though. :(

P.S. You're rockin' that bikini!!

supercommonname said...

Ok, here's my favorite part about this: References to 10 Things I Hate About You and Friends back-to-back :)

Happy all my unintentional burns have to led to something useful. Hydrate and go apply more aloe NOW!

p.s. that line is absolutely impressive. well done. (well, not actually since the sunburn is a bad thing but you know what I mean)

Susanna said...

haha, I just get tan. Oh look who got the good DNA now?

Liz said... am sooooo sorry--that looks just horribly painful.

And, um, how do you look SOOOO FREAKING GOOD????? Hello...did you seriously birth twins??? Dang.. :)

Sarah said...

OUCH!!!!! I've gotten a few like that and it is so uncomfortable and ITCHY!

I've got to agree with "girlsmom" though. I'm in awe of your belly!!!

Margaret said...

OUCH!!!! sun poisoning is not fun!!! hope you're feeling better by now! i laughed about everything being closed on sundays down here--so true!

hopefully you don't get burned again, but somebody told me years ago that milk of magnesia works for sunburns so i tried it the last time i got a bad sunburn and it seriously helped.

way to rock that bikini!! i'm very jealous!!! my flabby belly is still hidden in a tankini--you are my inspiration!

Mark said...

Seriously, Joanna can do a Plank for longer than I can. I'm the jealous one...