Waiting in the corral

I was not well this morning.  Pretty sick.  It was difficult to even get on the computer to respond to all of you lovlies out there.
So I slept.  And I was soon greeted with a visitor…

This is Molly.  She’s one of the best cats you will ever meet.  And this is how we spent our morning. In kitty cuddle heaven.

I wasn’t much better when I woke up.  I think I may have been running a bit more on adrenaline than I realized and had a little crash today.  Not sure.  In any case it was a day to process and take it all in.  And get in a little sleep with a furry purry blanket.

I have an appointment tomorrow morning for the next steps.  I have no idea what they are and I feel like I should educate myself, but I’m a little overwhelmed how.  There’s things out there that I don’t want to read and there seems to be so much. Where do you begin? I did receive a great book from a friend that seems to be a really good start and I really appreciate all of the advice from friends who have gone through similar things themselves or with a family member.

I’ve heard from a couple of my Team In Training friends. I’ve completed 2 marathons with them.  TNT raises money for blood cancers.  It was an incredible experience.
For those of you who’ve never run a race it’s a little hard to describe, but I’ll try:
On race day, there’s a lot of excitement, anxiety and adrenaline as you wait for the gun.  When the gun finally goes off, you still have to wait for the corrals ahead of you to go.  And you’re pumped and it’s hard to not push ahead.  Once you see the clearing to start you want to just start sprinting.  But the key to finishing a marathon without injury or illness is pace.  You have to start slow or you risk not having enough energy.  And as you go there’s people cheering you on and in the one’s I did bands playing every coupe of miles.
The first 4 to 6 miles are good.  You find your groove and love that you’re doing it.
Starting around mile 7 you start to enjoy the crowds a bit more.  Keeps you focused.
Miles 12 to 14 are exciting and scary.  You start to feel the pavement with every step and little aches start to  make themselves known.  You pass the 13.1 mark though, and that’s encouraging.  Half way!
Miles 16-18 are tough.  In my race we call it the gauntlet because of the stretch of road it’s on.  There’s not much out there.  The crowds have thinned and the sun is usually beating down by down.  The pavement seems harder and the little pains start to scream.  Other pains start in new places and it’s pretty miserable.  You try to find things to keep your pace up like someone with a garden hose or a bowl of orange slices and try your best to not think about the fact that you have 9 more miles to go.
Then something happens around mile 19.  You head out of the gauntlet and into a subdivision full of cheering people.  There’s a band playing a song you really like, the aches and pains start to numb and you find a new wind that takes you through the next few of miles.
Then you get to mile 24.  Only two more miles to go!  And all of those aches and pains hit all at once and the heat is beating harder than ever.  Two. more. miles. to. go.  and it feels like it will be the longest two miles you’ve ever had to go.
Miles 25 starts to lighten up a bit and you focus on everything you can to get through this mile. Breath, cheering, music, trees, birds in the sky.  Whatever. And you find a little somethin to pick up the pace a bit.
And then you finally cross 26.  You can’t believe you made it.  You start to run.  You forget every blister, ache and pain and just head to that finish line.  Two tenths of a mile isn’t very far, but seems like another mile after 26.  But you run and run as fast as your beaten legs can take you and euphorically cross that finish line in a blur.  And any tears that come are from pure joy and you smile.

I got to thinking about that experience when this all started happening and it’s funny because a friend mentioned it too…
This is a marathon I didn’t sign up for but I’m suddenly in the corral. I will probably get a little banged up along the way and it’s not going to be easy, but I’m pretty sure I can do it.

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