I, like many, have been thinking about the tragedy at the Boston Marathon on Monday. As a runner, this hit home for me.
Boston is the dream. A few years ago, I was in Boston on race Monday and made David go to both the finish line and the race expo.
I was in awe...because, as a not-very-fast-runner, the idea of qualifying seems like a nearly unobtainable goal. It's the dream that I just might be able to accomplish if I really really commit myself to it. To me, qualifying would have been evidence (in jacket and medal form) of a type of tenacity I haven't yet found in my running life.
The idea of attacking this even is horrifying.
Worse, though, is the attack on the spectators. In both the marathons I have run (and most of the half marathons), family and friends have come to support me. These people did not get up at an unholy hour and stand around in the cold for nearly five hours because they WANTED to-- they did it out of love and support.
During my first marathon, one of my happiest memories isn't the finish line--it's spotting David a quarter of a mile from the finish line and having him run the rest of the way on the sidelines near me.
In my second full marathon, the course was not crowded at all and there were many points when I was the only runner for a hundred yards or so. There was a point when I was near tears from pain and exhaustion and a lady shouted, "YOU ARE STRONGER THAN YOU THINK," to me. I have no idea who this angel was--but I remember her words to this day. She gave me encouragement when I needed it most.
My point is that attacking event is awful--but attacking spectators who are there in a show of love and support is beyond comprehension.
My prayers to all those who were impacted by this act.
On Sunday, I ran the Go! St. Louis Half Marathon for the 7th time (and I think that might have been my 10th Half Marathon, but don't know for sure) and it was more fun this year than last :)
David has been out of town at the master's until today (and can I just breathe a sigh of relief that he's back??) so I had my good from Henselface (real name: Laura) come over and spend the night. She watched Mac in the morning so he wouldn't have to stay in his crib until I got home at 10. Laura was a real lifesaver and was even understanding that I couldn't drink with her the night before a race.
Since Laura is a real gem, she even helped me watch a friend's infant that night (since, you know, we were going to be at home anyway, right?)... and stayed up with the baby until his parents picked him up. I went to bed, because I'm cool like that.
I got up at 4:45, ate breakfast, and piddled around until leaving at 5:50. I realized as I was driving to the race that this was my first year doing it ALONE. Every year before I either had someone I was running with OR some spectators. I have never driven myself before.
The race went pretty well. I didn't have a time goal (since I knew I wouldn't PR) but I did want to do better than last year, when I was not happy with my training or my time.
Last year's time 2:44
This year... 2:10!
Yeah! I shaved nearly 35 minutes off (that's over 2 1/2 minutes/mile faster!). It wasn't as good as my all-time PR of 1:55 in 2010, but, hey, I'm a mom now. Training is TOTALLY different when you have to squeeze it in around a toddler.
After the race, I ran into some people from work, which was nice. HOWEVER, my family was running the Brew-To-Brew that day and my little sister kept texting me pictures of people that I knew in college and high school and haven't seen for AGES. AND my family had matching Lyndon Veterinary shirts (that, ahem, no one got me). Maybe next year I'll do the brew-to-brew and skip the Go! Maybe, ideally, they won't be on the same weekend.
On a sidenote, yesterday morning I got an email that said race pictures...so I clicked the link to see how I looked. I don't buy them...but I sure like to look at them. I got a little down because I looked pretty heavy in the pictures. Then I realized that I didn't wear a hat this year--they were LAST YEAR'S PICTURES! Bam! I haven't seen this years, but I'm around 30 lbs lighter. I did, however, wear the same shirt both years. Must be my lucky shirt.
Our Easter week started last Saturday with our church Easter Egg Hunt. Mac did surprisingly well for the first 90 seconds... then just wanted to dump the eggs. Still fun, though.
He also got the opportunity to meet the Easter Bunny. In light of his previous FREAK OUTS with sports mascots and the fact that we wanted him to be pleasant for the egg hunt, we didn't force a hug or a picture. Mac chose to wave hello to him from a safe distance. He kept staring at him and didn't seem scared, which is promising.
Since the hunt was at a park, we had some digging time. Mac LOVED it.
On Easter Day, we went to our church with David's family. We got there super early because, even though there were 6 services, The Gathering can really pack the house. Our Pastor Matt encouraged us to take a picture of the crowd and share on social media.
Mac dressed up for the day...in an outfit my aunt bought for him for my sister's wedding with he was 2 months old... I think she purchased it for the vest and tie, but it worked out really well for today since the 2T suit fit perfectly.
In fact, David and I dressed up too. Don't we all look snazzy as a family?
After church I made Easter Brunch for the family at our house. It was SO MUCH less stressful for me than trying to keep Mac happy at a restaurant during nap time.
Here was the menu...
Spinach and Roasted Red Pepper Quiche
Texas-Style Egg Casserole
Biscuits and Gravy
Turkey Sausage Patties
Orange Danish Rolls
Lemon Cream Pie
Whew... needless to say, I was STUFFED when the meal was over. Luckily, my mother-in-law Debra cleaned my kitchen. We're the perfect match--I love to cook but hate to clean and she's the opposite. Perfect!