Today Was A Good Day
I wish I was a good enough writer to accurately depict the joy I’ve experienced today. I’m not that good, so I’ll just do the best I can…
To celebrate (commemorate?) Memorial Day, I walked the Gate to Gate Run/Walk race on Eglin AFB (thanks to a damn good friend who made sure I had no excuse). It’s 4.4 miles of nothing but heat and humidity…gotta love Florida in May…the most I’ve walked in the past 6 months is about 3 miles…so I was woefully unprepared…or so I thought…
Let me clue you in on something…I love, love, LOVE to race…when I was still running, that was the whole point. I trained from race to race always trying to beat my last time. Running or walking, I’ll never be the fastest. But who cares? I compete against ME…it’s the perfect outlet for my overcompetitive nature…
And sadly, since Sean was born, I have barely raced…it all sort of ended when I couldn’t really run anymore. (Short story: I totally overdid it a couple of times trying to increase my mileage, blew my knee, never got it rehabbed, and now running on asphalt, concrete, whatever, HURTS – I’m getting a treadmill and will start from scratch.)
In fact, the last time I was in THIS race, I was pregnant with Sean. I did several races while I was pregnant with Sean…the last one 2 months before he was born – a July race, and I had to pee the whole time.
I love the wind in my hair. I love passing people. I love NOT letting people pass me. I love the pain of pushing myself faster and faster. I love finding that person ahead of me that I WILL pass. I even love that little voice of doubt that says, “Can you keep this pace for long?” (The answer is a big HELL YEAH!) I love that little kick you give it at the end (because you ALWAYS finish strong). And today, especially, I loved not thinking about ANYTHING but the race and trying to keep a steady pace.
I can block out anything and everything during a race. In that moment, when it’s all about putting one foot in front of the other and NOT giving up (no matter what), I’m not a mom, I’m not going through a divorce, I’m not a neurotic-mess-of-a-woman who has no clue how to be single, I’m a competitor.
And when I say I can block out anything, I mean ANYTHING. Like the blister that formed in the first half mile that bled all over my sock and shoe…didn’t even put a band-aid on it until about 45 minutes after I finished. Like needing to pee in the first quarter mile which means I didn’t stop for water, either…
The big joke is that I never have a cheering section when I finish…even when there should be. Today was no exception. No one thought I would finish when I did, so Aidan and Sean were still playing on the playground as I crossed the finishline…thank God I don’t do this for anyone but me!
In my circle, all races end with food, usually breakfast – specifically, eggs and bacon. It’s the proverbial carrot at the end of the stick. For some reason, it tasted even better today…No post-race nap for me but I didn’t mind…I was way too relaxed to care about naps.
I found my joy again. Today, I reunited with something that fills me with pure, unadulterated happiness…and I am NOT going to let it slip away again. If you need me, I’ll be preparing for my next race.
Oh, and not that it matters, but my official time was 1:05:52 (15 minute mile), 8th in my age group out of 32…not too shabby for being unprepared. I can’t wait to see how I do once I start actually training.
Posted on May 30, 2011, in Joy, Moments in Life and tagged Divorce, Gate to Gate Run/Walk, Happiness, Memorial Day, motherhood, race, Racing, Running, Walking. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.