Yes, I am annoying the ever living hell out of all of you with my random countdowns. I know, and I do apologize. Kind of. I can’t really help it.
SIX DAYS SIX DAYS SIX DAYS.
Sorry. I am so excited about this race. And excited about going on a trip with the Expert for the first time… in…. oh, seems like forever. Seven months, actually. And I don’t count that last trip because he was working, and I was climbing bridges in Sydney Harbour. (Okay, so it was a vacay for me).
But just eight hours, driving in a car with my husband, and our bicycles… heaven.
Three things are cool and surreal about this trip.
1) I set out with a goal for this triathlon. I told the Expert he was coming along too. At first, he fussed. Then he gave up and just succumbed to the pain. He and I have accomplished all sorts of crazy things in our thirteen years together, but never a true health/fitness goal. I don’t count huffing through a 5K back in 2007 as a real goal.
This is a big deal for us, for our relationship, for our family. I went to high school with this girl who ran all the time with her mom and dad. Totally foreign and weird to me. And I was athletic, just not endurance-type athletic. Running? And with Mom and Dad? Weird. And now, I have huge hopes for my family to someday be that weird. I love it.
2) I have watched myself, everyday, get a little bit stronger, “faster” and better. I say “faster” because I am not fast. But I am damn well faster than I was last year. And the year before. When I registered for St. Anthony’s back in December 2010, I actually marked a date in March 2011 on my calender: “Last Day to Defer Race Registration for 2012.” Meaning, that I could have changed my mind about the race. Knowing full well that I rarely had follow-through in the past, and this year, could have been no different.
When that little Outlook Calendar pop-up appeared… I laughed. No way! I was only four weeks away from the race. And I was so happy.
Through all this, I have also had a chance to gain some perspective on how fortunate I am, just in small areas of my life. I had a great lunch with Mike Lenhart, president of the Getting2Tri Foundation, and one of the athletes, Kelly Casebere, last week.
Kelly is a single amputee, losing her left leg above the knee after a boating accident back in high school. She competed in her first triathlon last year, and also plays soccer. And I don’t think anything could have wiped the smile off her face during lunch. Mike joked that I always came up with nicknames for folks on my blog. She is for sure, “Giggles.” Giggles is so positive, and so powerful a person.
I wanted to ask Giggles how she remained so positive. How she wasn’t angry or sad. But I really couldn’t stand to ask. I didn’t want to be perceived as negative. But I had to know. So I asked her anyway.
She said, “There is no reason to be angry when I stared death in the face. And I won. Every day is a gift.”
When I was struggling with feeling sorry for myself last week, Mike had suggested that I meet with him and Kelly to “gain some perspective”. Yes. I gained some perspective. So for that I am thankful to Mike (who for now, remains nickname-less) for that opportunity, and I look forward to working with G2T in the future.
3) Finally, I am closing the book on another chapter in my life immediately after St. Anthony’s. It is with a heavy, but hopeful, heart that I am leaving my current law firm and going to a new one… only a hop-skip-jump away from my house. I will miss so much about my legal eagle family. Afterall, I moved to Atlanta for this job. And now, new beginnings.
I am at peace for the first time in a long time. I think alot of it has to do with my training, yes. But alot has to do with hope, my family and the promise of just becoming a better person. Every day is a gift, says Giggles.
As Coach Monster tells the crazy group before each 6am spinning class: You did not roll in here at 5am to pose. Close your eyes and think about what you are going to accomplish today. And aim to walk out of this place a better person. Today, you will be a better person.
I like that. Each day is a new day, a new beginning.
Cliche. But so true.