So … Boston.
It has been two years almost to the day since I last laced up my running shoes for a race. In 2011, I injured myself during my first race of the season, about three km into an 8K. Let’s be honest – the race I was running isn’t an easy one and I was nowhere near properly trained. I had easily skipped half of my training runs and hadn’t pushed out more than 4K (on flat roads) as preparation to run a very hilly course in High Park (in Toronto). Some may think it was stupid of me to even make my way to the starting line … and they would probably be right. But what I needed, more than anything, in April of 2011 when my mom was dying, was a sense that I had some control over something that happened in my life. If it was a stupid decision, that was fine, but it would be MY stupid decision and I was going to finish that course no matter what.
Did you know you can’t really limp through a course that’s almost entirely hills? Needless to say I didn’t do very well in the race. I haven’t run one since.
Then, yesterday, Boston.
As tragic as the news of what happened there is, what I feel most is anger. I’ll probably never qualify to run Boston but I don’t need to … I know what the running community is all about and I feel a very focussed rage towards anyone that would try to harm that community. The grief I feel for all of those people who were injured, who were killed, who are hurting because their loved ones hurt and – trivial as it may seem – those who trained so hard for a race that they never got to finish, just can’t be put into words. The anger I feel for the evil that caused so many people harm isn’t mine alone.
Yesterday also made me feel one more thing: the desire to lace up my running shoes again. I’m not sure what this act of terror intended to accomplish, or what the perpetrators were trying to prove. But they won’t scare me out of doing another race … if anything what happened yesterday made me want to go back to the running community that I love so much.
Time is a precious thing. None of us are guaranteed a single moment beyond each breath we take. My thoughts, hopes and prayers are with the people of Boston and with all of those families that have been changed forever by what happened there yesterday. For me, I’m going to take my anger to the pavement, in honour of those who may never be so lucky again.