The Friday before our Christmas vacation began 26 people were gunned down in Newtown, CT, 20 of them children.
To say that that Newtown tragedy rocked my already pretty shaky world is putting in mildly.
To make a long story short, I hit the pavement on Jan. 7, 2013 with my new Sauconys and my C25K app on my Iphone.
Saving my sanity and possibly my life was the goal.
I threw myself into the running community, asked for advice from wherever I could find it, both near and far...and have never, I mean never been turned away or felt as if I didn't belong.
I have been encouraged by strangers, patted on the back by people I hardly know, and have even met new friends in surprising places.
I finished my first 5K with my oldest daughter on April 6, 2013.
and loved every minute of it!
I was and still am hooked.
My next 5K is another community race 2 weekends away.
My calendar is full of possible race weekends.
I drool over running shoes.
I pay more attention to what I eat than I ever have...because I WANT to...what will slow me down has no place in my kitchen.
I read runner's magazines and blogs and even talk via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram with other runners. I'm beginning to slowly be able to speak their language.
I even added the Boston Marathon to my bucket list.
One day...I said...I may not ever get to run it, but I would like to be a part of it any way I can at least once.
And, then the unthinkable.
I had just gotten back to my desk from my morning classes, had eaten my late lunch and was trying to figure out which one of the million tasks I should begin with when I received a text from my mom:
I stayed glued to the t.v., computer, and cell phone pretty much until about 1 a.m.
My first task was to check on the runners I knew or knew about who were there.
Thankfully I follow most of them through a variety of social media feeds and was able one way or another to see "I'm ok" messages from all my real life as well as virtual running buddies.
For the rest of the afternoon and into the evening I just absorbed the words, some of the photos, and the unbreakable spirit of the running community.
Three months ago I would've hidden in the house and let helplessness overtake me.
Yesterday I got angry.
And then I wanted to run.
I donned my 1st 5K t-shirt this morning
and my running shoes
AND I signed up for my first 1/2 marathon in Feb. 2014...the Rock N Roll Marathon in New Orleans, LA
When my Layla and I run later this afternoon, our goal is 4.09 miles.
I will not be terrorized.
I will run for Boston.
I will pray for Boston.
And, I will be Boston strong.