I have finally made it to the final days before my first marathon. I find myself reflecting back on my journey, and I am proud of how far I have come but I find myself realizing that I have a long road ahead of me. I have goals and dreams before me but I know that in time, with discipline and a great deal of patience, anything is possible with God leading the way!
One of my triathlons I did while in high school
I have no doubt it was hard for my Dad after so many months of training. But his love and devotion for my Mom far outweighed any desire to race. How could he run his first marathon and not have his bride, his best friend there with him? I always admired my Dad for making my Mom a priority, and the love he showed that day is something I will never forget. Nevertheless, I do not think I fully understood his decision until now.
Daddy, you may not have been able to finish your marathon but you just know that when I cross that line, you will be in my heart and I will make you proud! You have always been such an amazing example to me and for the many, many times you and Mom have encouraged me along this long journey, I thank you. Thank you for always believing in me and knowing that even though I lost my way, I would make it back to the girl you once knew, and I would be living the life God has in store for me.
A few memories from our family races growing up...
I have no idea what I was thinking with the shorts and the big sunglasses....oh my! Don't you love old photos from the late 80's and 90's!! But it was an amazing memory running with my Mom!
My husband never seemed to lose faith in me. I remember sitting on the couch in Russia and signing up for what would be my first triathlon in years!! We were moving back to the US and I had not swam or biked in forever. I had lost about 70 lbs at that point, and I was bound and determined to get back to triathlons. Even though I did not even own a bike, I signed up and he was so very proud of me. He surprised me months later with a scrapbook that he made me for all my triathlon bibs and memories. Again, he showed me that my dreams, my goals are his as well. His heart is so invested in my journey it has truly become his own!
Seeing my girl at the end of my first 16 mile run! She was holding the sign that she made with my husband for me and my heart broke seeing her standing there cheering me on saying Mommy! Mommy! I will never, ever forget this moment...
Tears of joy holding my girl...
During one of my 20 mile runs
Finishing my 18 miler!!
My husband made these signs and had them on the side of the road exactly at the 10, 18 and 20 mile mark!! I cried so hard when I realized what they were as I was running past them! I was in shock. It was an incredible memory. He made everything so very special for me.
Here I am finishing my first 20 miler!!! My husband had all the signs lined up for me like a little finish line with him cheering me on through the finish!
Happy as can be after my first 20 mile run!
The sign and balloons I came home to after my last 20 miler!