Honestly, I don't really know how or where to begin this post. I'm crying. I'm not sure why. I suppose it's because I understand somewhere down deep that I have experienced something monumental. Unfortunately, I don't have the words to tell this story.
I'm not sure that words could even suffice.
This thing was so much bigger than a race. It was everything and nothing I expected. It was a milestone that will forever shape the course of my life. It was a lesson in grace, love, friendship, pain, perseverance, sacrifice, pride, humility, integrity, disappointment, hunger, achievement... and on and on and on. It was hard. REALLY hard, yet exhilirating. It was one of the most important things I have experienced.
Just after 8 a.m. on Sunday October 15, 2006, I crossed the starting line of the inaugural Denver Marathon and began my race...
...5 hours and 21 minutes later I finished.
As I crossed the finish line, I was overwhelmed. I was accutely aware of the significance of that moment. Yes, I finished the race, but much more importantly, I was surrounded and uplifted. So many of you ran with me and carried me. I am profoundly grateful.
To each and every person who emailed, called, sent cards and even chocolate... thank you. To those who fought traffic and road blocks to come support me... thank you. To the community that paused and took a moment to remember me... thank you. To the mama whose fight touched and inspired me... thank you. To my two dear friends - one in velour and the other without shoes - who came alongside me in a moment's notice... thank you. To my captivating sister who prayed with me at the starting line and cheered for me at the finish line... thank you. To my sugar family whose smiling faces broke me to tears and lifted me higher in one moment than I knew was possible... thank you. To the three who have supported, encouraged and believe in me every step of this journey... thank you. To the One who sustains and continues to fill me... thank you.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
This race is over. Many more lie ahead...