Monday, October 11, 2010
While I was in the corral waiting to start I heard a song that triggered a memory of me ten years ago. I was in my car driving home from work and said song (a very sappy, cheery song) came on the radio. I started bawling because I was not cheery at all. My life was a complete mess, and about to get messier, and I couldn't see a day when I wouldn't wake up feeling like there'd been an atomic blast in my chest.
If you had told me then that not only would I stop hurting so much, I'd even feel good most of the time; and that I would figure myself out and still like me most of the time; and that I would be standing with 45,000 other people waiting to run 26.2 miles, I'd have thought you were either foolish or insincere. But there I was, staring at the starting line, feeling extra proud to be there.
When the race was over, I started thinking about that memory again and how that time in my life was sort of training for the mental part of the marathon. Just like the race, there were times in that awful era when things were too hard and didn't want to try any more, and worse still times when I didn't think I could try anymore. But yesterday when the weather was kicking my ass all over the course, I stopped for a second and asked myself what I had to do if I wanted to have any chance of finishing and decided that was something I wanted to do and something I could do. It took me a little longer than I had imagined, and it wasn't pretty, but I made it.