Do you have one of those lives where you kinda want to try new things, but you’re stuck in the same old routine and aren’t sure if you can actually accomplish any of those new things you want to try? For example, a new healthy lifestyle, learning to play an instrument, writing a novel, or perhaps running a marathon...or even a 10k?
Well, I am the type of person who loves and really enjoys helping and doing things for others, so let’s just say I had an opportunity to put combine all of this together. While I happen to be the mother of a high school cross country runner- I don't run...at all...well, unless I am being chased. I am always in awe of my daughter‘s endurance and dedication to running and I wish I could do it. It just so happened that this opportunity came up and needed to be met with preparedness. This past weekend I set out on my journey with my cross country runner and a group of others running for a charity down in Walt Disney World. it was the Disney Wine and Dine. We did the 10 K, which is 6.2 miles...in my opinion the last two miles seemed more like 22 miles, as my legs felt much heavier than when I started out. In the previous months, I had raised about six thousand dollars, with the help of many family members and friends, to help feed local families undergoing Cancer treatments. Sparrows Nest is an organization that provides meals to local families dealing with the effects of cancer, and that’s who we were running for. Not only did we raise money but we trained....well kind of. Of course, my daughter trains every day and I did go to the gym to get stronger...and I ran a bit, I am sure not as much as I should have for this kind of run, but I had something in me saying, "don't worry, you're going to make it". I don't know if it was my faith or my dedication or just the fact that I wanted to prove a point that if you really want to do something, you CAN do it.
The morning of the event, I woke up at 3 am, boarded the bus to Disney with other runners, might I add, they were runners. Real runners. Lol! When I arrived, I was never so scared, thousands of people were herded in like cattle, kind of like a general admission rock concert and being I am so small, all I saw were the backs of people. I was very anxious as I sent my daughter over to her coral- the coral for real runners. She was closer of course, because she has a much faster time than me. I went to my coral, alone, now for those of you that know me, I am rarely alone. I was definitely nervous, thinking about what I had done. Yelling at myself, "what were you thinking signing up for a run, your first run ever and you make it a 10 k, because 6.2 miles wasn't that far ?" Oh boy, I had really done it this time, so instead of running away and quitting, I moved up to the start line and now the excitement was building up, the fireworks went off and here we go. We’re off! Look at me, I'm running! With real genuine runners and I am keeping up and most importantly I am still breathing. I honestly don't know who I was in that moment, I was the person I always wanted to be. Someone who didn't give up, who kept going- and here I was doing it. I think the runners kept me going, just knowing even though I was alone, I wasn't. Then came mile 4, I was getting a bit tired and did a walk/run more than the other miles, but I was still going. I was running through EPCOT in the dark of the morning, I hit mile 5, I wanted to give up, I wasn't sure I could finish, my head was down I was pushing forward and then it happened....I looked up and saw the most beautiful sky as the sun was coming up. It was like that moment breathed new life into me and this burst of energy came over me. Coupled with the support I was getting from home and from my daughter telling me I am a bad ass and I can't give up now. I did my run/walk the rest of the way because my heart rate was a little too high. Oh yeah- I might've failed to mention, I was running this race for cancer patients, when I myself have a heart condition. Here it was mile 6, only two tenths of a mile to go, which felt like forever, and then the finish line! There she was! I have never seen anything so beautiful in all my life, for many reasons.
I cried my eyes out as I crossed, for finishing and running for those who can't, for me making it across the finish line and crushing my goal. For me not giving up on a bucket list item, for leading by example and showing my kids that hard work and dedication goes a long way, but mostly I cried because I did this to help others like I do and I think the person it really helped was myself. I am now a runner, much like Forest Gump who woke up one day and just started running, and yes I plan to do more runs. It was fun, invigorating and challenging, and I love that.
So, for those of you out there that might want to do or try something but you aren't quite sure, I say, do it! Go all in! Take the chance and yes, it may be difficult and yes, you may doubt yourself at times, but I can promise you the reward of doing it is so worth it. Have faith in yourself, tell yourself you can. I believe in you, you just need to believe in you. Some of us may be older, much like a fine wine we get better with age and when you accomplish something at this age, it feels so much better. So live your best life, get out there and do it, you'll be so happy you did. I know I am!
Dream, Believe, Inspire!