How things change from 1 year ago…

     One year ago I was faced with one personal challenge to accomplish my first running race, leg 4 of the Detroit Relay Marathon.  It’s funny now that I can look back on how a 3 mile run looked difficult especially now when in less than a year’s time I completed a half marathon, a triathlon and a full marathon.   While this year in passing has probably been one of the most rewarding ones for me both personally, physically and emotionally, it also has lead me to a new marathon called life.  You see after running 22 years in the race that I had called a career, I lost my job.  After 22 years of the daily training to participate in my career, the race was cancelled. 
     Saturday, October 21st, as I made my way to the Detroit Relay Marathon to celebrate the second running of my very first race and run again with my team, the feeling was much different.  After losing my job something happen to me, something that I haven’t felt in a very, very long time;  sadness, anger, fear, frustration, depression, jealously, hate, anxiety, embarrassment, uselessness, and for once, completely lost, is just a few of the feelings, emotions and thoughts that I felt.  You see, being happy for myself, meant being comfortable with the situation that I now found myself in.  So feeling good about anything, with all of these new uncertainties, was a stretch.  And it was much easier to just feel bad about life in general, but I didn’t want to let my team down.  Therefore I must run!
      Just like training and running a marathon,  these past weeks have been  a constant struggle, a thrill ride with up’s & downs, twists & turns and the feeling of being upside down & right side up, all changing in a matter of minutes.  A wise friend and beloved family member told me to, “buckle up, it’s going to be a wild ride” but remember to feel all this and to walk in path of uncertainty is also to feel alive.  I guess hearing a “Congratulations”, from him was the furthest thing from my mind but I’m slowly learning what he meant that day.  It’s taken me some time to mourn over my loss, and each day I still may have a moment, but I’m now learning how to train for a different race and how to embrace the path of uncertainty.   It’s not easy and it will take a lot of training and support but as Tom said, “Move on”.  
      I’m happy to say that I did run in the race, and at times it did feel good, but it also felt surreal, like my mind and body were not together.  Not to mention the anxiety attacks that were still haunting me in my mind.  I was also having some issues with my knee.  I was hoping that given a rest period after last month’s marathon, the soreness would go away but that wasn’t the case.  Miles 1 through 2 were good; no pain, no issues and I actually felt mentally good about running and I did enjoy the moment and even ran a great pace.   But mile 3 it started.  I guess I shouldn’t have run so hard but it’s all I know how to do and by the time I reached mile 4 it was over.  The pain was bad and with each stride it just got worse.  I resulted to run until my knee hurt really bad, then I would walk since walking didn’t hurt as much.  Ultimately it lead to running, walking and limping the last few miles.  Finally the finish; it was nice to see my wife waiting for me at the exchange.  Without her love and support, I would be even more lost. 
       Perseverance, persistence and in time my heart, mind & soul will heal.  But now more than ever, I must trust the path, I must believe.  Nothing to prove to anyone but everything to prove to myself…

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