Tuesday, May 22, 2012
The crowd noise grew substantially as I neared the final turn of the First Elk Grove "Running of the Elk" Half Marathon, seriously, it was like a wall of sound, welcoming us to cross the finish line which was still over 100 yards away. People blowing horns, music blaring, inaudible words falling around us like an avalanche....
I had been following a young man, probably in his mid-20s, not really wearing the best of running gear. He actually looked more like he was dressed for some time of leisure in front of the tube. As I was just a few steps behind him, I noticed that he had had about enough, his legs barely moving, the toll of logging over 12 miles had taken its toll on his body. As we rounded the last turn, he suddenly turned to me and, pointing feverishly at the finish line which had just come into view, yelled "There it is! There it is!" His smile lit up his entire face as he practically stumbled backward while continuing to point at the finish line. As I raced past him, I said, "Yep, there it is my brother...."
It occurred to me that in this young man's joy, I had forgotten really the thrill and satisfacti0n of accomplishment. I have become so saddened by myweight re-gain, that I completely lost the joy in the reality that even now I can still run 13.1 miles and not just once, but on consecutive weekends....I have forgotten the sheer realization that my daughter and I hiked up and back a moderate tough trail to a beautiful waterfall...that we did this together...for hours..and it was just our time! And that we soaked it all in afterward with our first ever visit to Sonic Burger and it was ok! I had forgotten the joy of going to the park with my sons and throwing the frisbee around and laughing as we ran around, missed some easy ones, caught some tough ones and came close more than once of throwing that disc into the neighbors' yards! How could I have become such a pity party attender? How could I have forgotten the joys of these moments that exercsing still allows me? Enough. I may not have my weight where it needs to be, but I can still run, I can still laugh, I can still make memories and I can still soar.
Next time I start having one of those "woe is me moments", I am going to remember the young fella's words as he spied the finish line, "There it is! There it is!" and just remember and take comfort in the things that I can do and just accept that there is still work to be done.
Hmmm, I still think I have a few "There it is!" moments left in me. How about you?