Thursday, July 09, 2009

Marathon Touchstones

Our friendly mailman was right on time this morning. We all know he's arrived because the thud of the mail hitting our living room floor is a loud sound we have all gotten use to in the last five years. A louder thud usually indicates magazines and flutters tend to be bills and/or junk mail. Today was a medium thud. Among the mail was a large envelope addressed to me. It had the OKC marathon logo in the return address corner. I opened it to discover a certificate. It was certifying my finish of 26.2 miles on an official course. "Cool."
This got me thinking about the marathon again. It's been nearly two and a half months since I finished. So I can't really use the "I just finished a marathon" phrase anymore. But there are still so many memories that are so fresh from that day. I figured, "what the hey", I'll share some of the "Behind the scenes" memories with you before they fade away.
For starters, this is just a great picture. It's totally my lovely, nerdy family. As we were all walking to the expo the day before the race. I noticed my nephew had his pants on backwards. Long story short, we had a good laugh remedying that problem in public.
I woke very very early that next morning and heard my text message alert. I opened my phone to read this.
As I was walking out to the shuttle stop, my Dad's message sent a burst of excitement down my spine. We all had a lot of stock put in to the day's race.

Early in the race, Kenton missed one of his projected stops. He was riding his bike along the course and wasn't where he said he would be.

I really didn't have the freedom to call and talk on the phone, but I was worried. So, this text prompted me to call him and talk on the phone while I ran a marathon. Long story short, he was fine, just a little bruised.

As I was running, my Dad was running his second half-marathon. It was weird to know he was out on the course with me, but I just couldn't see him.He triumphed against the wind and finished with a new PR. I keep waiting for the day he decides he's ready for the full and we can run one together. (Hint, hint..nudge, nudge)
I'm very lucky to have such support during these races. My sister kept Judah overnight. She, my brother-in-law, Jeff, and my Mom wrangled two very rambunctious boys in downtown OKC, while they waited for our finishes. My little man had too much fun while waiting and crashed into his cousin, leaving him with a nice shiner for the next few weeks. Here's the aftermath.As I was in the last few miles I heard my text alert go off. I'm not sure why I checked it, but I'm so glad I did. I opened it to read a message from my beloved Wendy. She got me through my first marathon and I really needed her at that moment. Then there she was, perfect timing.
If she only knew, what that did for me.
After I finished I sent her a message back. I'm doing that in the background of this picture. It's a great shot though. My family is partaking in all the free food we could pilfer. However, my bro-in-law, Jeff, is covering his nose. He has a big aversion to cheese and the smell of melted cheese from the Carl's Jr. burgers was getting to him. I later went back in the finishers area and asked for a cheese-less cheese burger, so he wouldn't be left out.

Later, after I had gone back to the hotel. I was checking the results and trying to see if another friend had finished. I couldn't get any results for her at that time. I was worried that she hadn't finished and something had gone wrong. Finally, a text came to me asking how I did. I told her my time and then I asked hers.

She had just completed her first marathon and she was sweet enough to ask about my quest for the BQ. I stole this picture from her, but it's such a powerful one. She's embracing her husband after her finish. I tear up every time I see it. It's what I think we all feel after a very hard battle.

There are no pictures, no texts messages, no documentation, and possibly no real proof that my mom was there in the middle of all this. She was behind the camera, picking up my husband from the ghetto as he wrecked his bike, wrangling kids, or cheering for her family. She did it all. Those touchstones exist on my heart. I don't take her support lightly. She gets no credit, but I know that I couldn't be half the success I am if it weren't for her. I love you Mom.

This was her and I this past weekend sportin' our Firecracker Age Group awards.

I can only hope these precious memories are preserved, always.


  1. great behind the scenes moments, thanks for sharing...brings back some of my own memories from the 1/, are you running boston next year?

  2. what a great race report and I especially love the test message. :)

    I am excited I found your blog and look forward to following.

  3. WONDERFUl post and AMAZING time!! I love that you will run a half on your birthday..