Greetings to my friends and fellow athletes!
I sit here now in awe. I just went to my 11 year old son's first cross country meet. I had no idea how powerful this would be for me. I began running cross country when I was 13 years old and a freshman at Saint Bernard's High School. Interestingly enough, my son's first race was at Wickam Park in Manchester, Connecticut. I have run many many times at this very same park, and on this very same course.
Being on the "other side" of any race or sports event is still different for me. It has taken some getting used to. I now understand that I am a mom and a wife. I will always support my family in all of their athletic endeavors.
Sometimes in that support is a bit of jealousy because I am not the one out there. However, to provide support in the form of a cheer or a bottle of water is an honor for me.
Today felt different. Running has always been such a large part of my life. And many of the memories in my formative years are based around running. I have some wonderful memories, and I have some truly sad memories as well. However, all of those memories and experiences made me who I am today. I don't like to
admit this, but sometimes the sad and truly brutal experiences had a greater impact on me than the happy go lucky experiences.
Today at Wickam Park, as I watched my 11 year old I reflected on what sports mean to me. I hope that my son can experience the friendships that grow out of shared pain and endurance. I hope that he has a race where life is perfect. I hope he can experience what it means to be "in the zone." I hope that he understands the seemingly contradictory statement: "just let go." I hope that he has races where every fiber in his body hurts and that he pushes through that pain just to finish. I hope that he understands the value to supporting fellow athletes and the volunteers. I hope that he finds peace in his own head and understands the serenity of running through the woods and listening to the silence.
At 35 years old, I am so proud of what I learned as a child. And I am even more proud that through all of the happiness, pain, turmoil, and tears I have stuck with running. It will be great to attend Hunter's next meet. I am so proud of Hunter and all of the kids who participated today. I saw some GREAT sprints to the finish and it is nice to see these kids care enough to push through their pain to reach the glory.
Good Luck and Namaste!