Right now, running 26.2 miles seems like the easy part. The hard part started last Thursday at 3 a.m. in the form of vomit down the front of my 3-year-old’s pajamas. A few hours later, after what felt like a few minutes of sleep and more vomiting, I woke up to read about the approaching Hurricane Sandy, which was heading for the East Coast and scheduled to hit around the time we were supposed to arrive there. After sobbing into my pillow alone, I tearfully called my mom, “Mom, this hurricane thing…”
The plans we’d made six months before, including our NYC Marathon trip and East Coast vacation, felt like they were about to unravel.
We’ve now been through two flight cancellations and two vomiting boys. I wish I could say that I’ve been handling the up-and-down, keeping-an-eye-on-the-storm situation with grace and good cheer. Quite the opposite. I’ve been irritable, short-tempered and stressed. I wish I could say that the days have been filled with baking homemade Halloween treats and other creative, fun-filled ideas. Nope. The uncertainty has gotten the best of me. I stare off into space, wondering if the race will even go on (it will) and if we’ll even get there (this remains to be seen. But we’ll try. On a flight tomorrow afternoon.) It has been a lesson for me—a reminder—about having absolutely no control over anything. Over the past few days, I’d probably have to give myself a flunking grade in the going-with-the-flow department.
The East Coast is already bouncing back. I’m hoping to do the same. I’m hoping to be a part of the action. The Marathon website reads “the Marathon has always been a special day for New Yorkers as a symbol of the vitality and resiliency of this City.” I’m hoping to be one of the people at the starting line Sunday who embodies that NY spirit —one who shows that you never give up, you never quit, you keep on going. Despite vomit. Despite storms. Despite cancellations.
The thing is, on this Halloween morning, I just don’t know. And for me, that’s the hard part.
We will do what we can to get there, knowing that ultimately much of it remains out of our hands.
But there is one thing I will do today: I will keep on running.