Yesterday marks the one-year point since the first post on this blog (which was unbelievably lame, but I think that's how a lot of things start out in life). When I started it, I just wanted to have a voice in the community of runners that already existed. A way to pipe up and chime in, instead of just standing outside with my face pressed up against the window. Look what that little voice has become.
A year later, I think this blog has lived up to its name (although recently I have considered changing it to "injured this amazing day"). A great deal of it IS about running. But I'm also hoping it is living up to the other half: being thankful for this - for every - amazing day.
There isn't much I don't write about. A great deal of it has, oddly enough, been about running. More has been about recovering from injury, and the ups and downs that come with training. A lot has been about triumph. I finished a triathlon. I ran again after surgery. I survived an open water swim, and 100 miles on a bike, and set a PR for this first time in 3 years. And then another one. And another. I celebrated a year in races. I discovered that I may be built for cycling, and saw the sun come up over the Potomac more times than I can remember. And my personal journey took many huge steps forward, with tons of new friendships, a new puppy, and a surprise wedding. I gave up red meat, then most meat, and moved to a more protein-based diet. I discovered that I loved to cook, despite the fact that at least 50% of my cooking experiments have been total disasters. I've only set fire to the stove once.
But a great deal of this blog has been about struggle. About struggling my way through some pretty dark times, about what it feels like to get down on your belly and slog through the really ugly parts of your life. And that's why I've decided to write this post, because as much as it's ironic that I'm trapped in bed a year later, waiting to heal, it's this kind of stuff that makes me the person that I am, and the blog the journey it has been. I could probably link back to at least 20 posts where I talk about this, about the raw emotional bumps that come along with being injured and unable to reach the goals I set for myself. But this means I also get to talk about why the fight is worth it. Sometimes I need to remind myself of that, right now more than ever.
My very first favorite post dealt with this struggle. It was kicked off by a twitter conversation about why we run. It made me think about why I run, why I continue to battle against something my body very clearly is not happy about. But more importantly, it was about not returning to a place where I've given up. Because I've given up before, and I will not go back.
And that's why I live, why I love, while I'll never stop fighting. I thank you, God, for most this amazing day. And I thank all of you guys, for a year most amazing, for giving me a place to twist and grow towards the sun, for the times you've reached out to support me, for the amazing friendships I've made that I know I'll have for life, for the times when I've been surprised by how much this feels like a great big crazy family. That's a big part of the reason why it's different this time around, why I haven't given up. Because of all of you, and your kindness and humor and wit and the way that you will not let me give up, no matter how badly I am hurting.
Oh, and this? I'll be there on Saturday. I'll get dressed and fueled up, and I'll drive to RFK and park and find my friends and shiver and stamp my feet nervously. I don't know how far I'll make it. I might run 2 steps and have to stop. I might make it only a mile, or 2. I might finish but just inside the 15:00 minute/mile pace cutoff that exists for the course when most people are long gone, or I might not even finish at all. But I will be there. I will not slink off and hide, I will thrash and kick and yell every step of the way. I will not stop fighting.