The training continues for my upcoming August 3rd Half Marathon. This is my way of celebrating 10 years of Survivorship. Cancer Survivorship. Stage IV Tonsil Cancer Survivorship. Today I had to run 9 miles. Two weeks ago I ran 8 miles, it wasn’t pretty and I did indeed cry.
I decided I’d get mile 9 out-of-the-way first so I didn’t have to think about it. (smile)Mile 1 saw a Momma Duck and her 5 or so babies (didn’t have my glasses on) swimming across the little pond by the Village Hall. At mile 3 starting thinking back on my journey, which of course included my Mom and so many others, so as I ran along the river my eyes got a little wet. I met a lot of runners going the opposite direction and realized I was now in the “brother/sisterhood” of people doing common things, like people on motorcycles, who give a little wave to each other, and sorta wished I was on a motorcycle instead of my own tired legs. Met a guy at Mile 4 who looked like an elite runner who obviously recognized my not being one and said, “Good Job” with a thumbs up. Between Mile 4 and 5 my right Gluteus Maximus went numb for a few minutes, passed and then went numb again. I wonder what the people in their little houses thought as I rubbed my butt. Around Mile 5 I was glad I was near a porta potty, but didn’t take my sweet time in there, since it smelled worse than I did. At Mile 6 Sheryl Crow told me I couldn’t cry anymore, so I bucked up. At Mile 7 a woman walking, passed me, which did nothing for my confidence, but then she got sidelined by goose poop on the path and I got past her, thinking to myself, she better not pass me again. But then kicked myself and said, “hey stupid, you just ran 7 miles!” Mile 8, so close to having this accomplished, knowing I was too close to home to get it done and realizing I’d have to run my street (it’s a mile if you go all the way down and back and down and back each end) and that’s when I felt the little droplets of rain. Only a mile to go, it’s not raining too bad. My back, thighs, calves and even the tops of my toes are screaming at me to stop torturing them. But, I’ve decided I already did Mile 9 in the beginning so, I GOT THIS! I rounded the corner and could see my house and the heavens let loose! All I could do was smile and say, “REALLY!” Is that all ya got. The good news is, it was not a cold rain, it cooled me off, my legs and toes were screaming at me but my heart was sayin’ I ain’t quitting! I ran a mile in the down pour. My neighbors driving down the street may have thought I was nuts, but not one offered me a ride. I ran up the street and back past my house and wondered how soon my husband would come looking for me as I ran past the house and down to the other end. My hair was dripping in my already wet face. Every piece of clothing dripping and my hands were pruning. I was soaked from head to toe and still trying to avoid puddles. And said to myself, “ya dummy! Your shoes are filled with water already, what does it matter, hit the puddle! When I got to the end of the street my IPod told me I had 400 meters to go, when I got close to the house I could see my husband sitting there shaking his head at me as I yelled at him, “I’ve only got 100 meters to go”! and ran past my house yet again, before getting to the neighbors driveway, turning around and headed home. As I ran up the driveway, I could barely hear my husband over my IPod which was telling me this was the farthest I ran, while my husband was telling me how he had been ready to come look for me. I said, “you know I had my phone with me right?” I did it! I was smiling and not crying. The rain washed all the stink that had clouded my mind of things that had been said to me by a stranger last night, and I realized that for one person that hates or dislikes me, it only makes those who love me and like me that much more precious. I am who I am and I’m stronger for the things that have come into my life. If I never run any farther than 9 miles I have nothing to hang my head over. Once again the good news is, I have run my farthest to date, I ran 9 miles today and I never have to run 9 miles again. The bad news is next week I run 10. It’s been an amazing journey this morning.