I love statistics.  Well, maybe I should clarify that.  I hated statistics when I had to take them at Notre Dame.  I remember Stats 1 and Stats 2 and they were painful.  They were probably the most painful classes I took at Notre Dame.  Although, astronomy wasn’t  a walk in the park.  Maybe what I really mean is that I like numbers.

When I used to run, way back when 4 months ago, I loved to calculate how fast we were going, how many miles we had left and how long that would take us.  Yes, there are apps for that but it occupied my head to think about the numbers.  I think it drove my running buddy crazy though.  I loved to watch a heart rate monitor but then I would tend to take my eyes off the road or trail and that was quite a hazard!  Now that I have a new exercise bike I am constantly flipping between display screens studying my calories burned, heart rate, speed and resistance.  Numbers keep my mind off the exercise.

Anytime I have been pregnant I have had a tendency to watch the contractions on my monitor which of course fills me with anxiety and makes my blood pressure go up which was the reason I was induced two of the three times.  Then there’s the baby’s heartrate to watch.  You can imagine what kind of dread I am always filled when the baby rolls and momentarily falls off the monitor.  Numbers make me crazy when I am pregnant.

Gigi spent a week in the NICU after she was born because she turned blue a couple of times.  She was always able to ‘self correct’ and never needed oxygen.  The doctors simply wanted to monitor her for a few days.  Whenever I was with her, which was not as frequent as I wanted as I had a newborn at home and two other children and had just had a C-section, I stared at the monitors.  Justin started turning the monitor around so I couldn’t see it.  He wanted me to watch Amelia and not the numbers.  I wasn’t going to have a monitor at home and I needed to watch Amelia and learn her signs of distress.  Numbers did not give me the full picture of my daughter.

My dad was in the hospital at least a dozen times in his last year.  Each time he was hooked up to every kind of monitor.  The first time we rushed up to see him in ICU he was in a coma and the monitors and numbers were all we had to tell us how he was doing.  The numbers painted a bleak picture.  A picture that was painted for us over and over again.  But the picture the numbers painted turned out to be wrong.  My dad was on the brink of death and each time a doctor called me to come up and say good bye or to make a decision about his care I wanted to ask them if they knew my dad and if they knew we had just been through the same thing last month.  He had nine lives and he lived each and everyone to its fullest.  When the end came my dad was not hooked up to any monitors.  There weren’t any numbers to predict his last breaths.  Numbers had no bearing on whether or not my dad was going to live.

I am studying numbers again but it is for a better reason.  One my dad would love.  I am watching the stats on my blog constantly.  I am fascinated by them.  It is so interesting to see where the clicks come from and how many clicks there are a day. It is so interesting to see that the post that drew the largest number of views was the one where I posted my fatbooth picture.  Numbers paint a picture of what you all like to see – a fat Julie.

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