Okay, two posts in the same day, this is crazy of me, but something came up and I just had to get it out on the line. ( major high fives if you know what movie that is from ).
When choosing my marathon, I put a lot of consideration to it. Even though the idea of the Steamtown Marathon seemed so perfect, there are a lot of different aspects that make it PERFECT for me in particular.
One because it was where I went to College for 4 years and then lived for a year after college. My first and favorite apartments were there. I had a lot of different firsts there. I graduated from there. I had my first real retail job here. Most of my amazing memories of my early 20's were in this area. I am an extremely emotional person, so stuff like this fuels me, it pumps me up.
Second, I knew it would be a place my boyfriend would love to go and have a mini vacation with. He has a lot of friends still around these parts, since we went to the same college and like myself he hasn't been back here in 6 years and we really loved it here.
Third, my Best Friend lives here. Lea Ann lives here and being able to have my Best Friend of twenty something years, at the finish line, cheering me on, well you know!
Fourth, its gorgeous this time of year around here. It is so different from Florida, its challenging in the hills and the cold weather, but this weather I was brought up in, it is my home and running in it, awakens me, it makes me feel strong and alive.
And lastly because my family only lives a few hours away, so this could be the one race they would be able to see me at. And what better then a FULL marathon. My mom and Aunt were on board of course right away and then I told my Poppy, Uncle and cousin, Savanna and they too were of course, we will be there. I love every single one of my family members so much willing to make the trip and spend money to see me accomplish this. They have been at every single one of my life's big events and this one is a big one for sure.
So here is the bad news....
My Poppy cant come. I am sure if you know me or have been reading with me for a while now, you know how much my Poppy means to me. I mean that man is my lifeline. Every part of who I am is because of him. I know the reason the person I am today is because he took me in and raised me as not only his granddaughter but as a second chance at raising a daughter. He is my strength, my heart and soul. He has been at every one of my big events and this one even though he isn't there, I know he is there in spirit.
It still hurts me know he wont be there. I was banking on seeing him over in the crowd, cheering me on, seeing his face and how proud I have made him. He said to me when I was home, how proud he was of me for attempting this, taking the time and dedication to follow through with the training and never give up. Well, I am not giving up now. Now, knowing he wont be there, fuels me even more. It will light a fire under me to get through those miles because I will send him a picture saying I made it. I want to earn that phone call telling him I am a marathoner.
I could hear it in his voice he was upset and I held back my tears and told him it is okay because honestly it is. I don't want him coming if he isn't a 100% because it would break my heart again, if I saw him standing there in pain but did it just for me and he would do that. He is stubborn. So for him to bow out, I know he isn't feeling well and all I want is for him to get better. All I ever want in life is for him to be okay. He has some really bad back pain and it isn't giving him the quality in life he deserves, so he needs to rest and trust his medications and get better.
But now, there is a little hole in my heart. But I will give this marathon everything in me now to finish. I WILL NOT QUIT!!!! I run for those who cant run and I run for those who wont be able to be there. I am running for all my guardian angels, in heave and on earth, I run for those who mean the most to me.
The first 4 miles are for my Grandpa Joe & Uncle Ralph
Mile 5-9 are for my Grandma Angelina, whom I am named after.
Mile 10-14 are for my Nanny, Poppy's late wife, my late Grandmother on my Dad's side
Mile 14-18 are for my Poppy, these miles were the miles in training, I really knew I could do this.
Mile 19-22 are for my Father, those are my toughest miles, I know he will carry me through.
Mile 23-25.2 those are for my friends and family. The friends that trained with me, via Facebook and Instagram and this blog. The friends who listened to me on the phone at work when I said I was tired, the friends who I trained with physically on those morning runs (Nanci, Jen, Jacke, Corina, Mike) we run those together, that is uncharted territory. These miles are for the family and friends who are waiting for me at the finish line, the ones who made the trip to support me in everything I do.
Mile 25.2-26.2, that mile is for me! I run that mile all for me, the final loop, the final 4 laps, the give it all I got. I run that mile like it is the very last mile I will ever run and I will take all those people and bottle them up. I will tuck them in my heart until it is just about to explode and use it in that last mile. I run that last mile for me, for the strength I have and the determination and dedication I put into this whole journey. I run that mile sweetly for me and the satisfaction of knowing I will get there no matter.
I believe in the idea that people go to heaven after they past, maybe it is not a spirtual heaven, but some place special and they are all together. In my mind, I know there is a finish line in heaven that my family members are watching anxiously. I know they are on the side lines and each of them are taking turns getting me through the miles. Sending me little signs of hope and push. I believe that they will all stand together, and embrace when I cross that finish line. I know my father will be on my back the whole time, I know he will be running right beside me. I believe this all to be true. I know I am one lucky girl to have two finish lines to cross, the one on earth and the one in heaven. I am blessed to have tons of people supporting me, even if I cant see them, I can feel them.
Thank you for reading this post, this is a post I have wanted to write forever, now you know who I run for and really what fuels my fire.