19 October 2006


I have reached the bittersweet end of my road to 26.2. It' s been four days since I crossed the finish line, and it is only today that I have been able to feel... really feel and the intense emotion of the 517.4 miles I traveled to get here.

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...

...Together, we press on.

09 October 2006


I'm still not sure how exactly we ended up together. I am certain, however, that this is a product - a blessing - of divine appointment.

This is my small group - Kristi, Niki, Paula, Wendy and me.
Here, I sit beside four of the most vibrant, encouraging and utterly captivating women I know.
Though we don't share a long history of common experience, we have already walked in freedom, struggle and vulnerability together. We are diverse in background, experience, passion, purpose, strength and weakness... yet, we are uniquely and profoundly connected. I am sharpened, inspired, challenged, empowered and intrigued by each of these women.
EVERY time we are together, I feel safe - I am home.
I am honored to call them sisters and friends.

This weekend we and our families shared an afternoon together. Five women, Five men and FOURTEEN of our sixteen children (ages 1 to 15) were present. Our time together was rich - filled with life, love, stories, laughter, tears and utter chaos... It was a blast.

Sarah and Hannah



Holly and Stephen


Paula and Jerry

Wendy and Alex


Kristi and Niki




Maya and me

I love these women. I adore their families. I treasure our time together.

07 October 2006

this morning

I had a great run.

I watched the sun give birth to another day.

Black, then blue. Deep purples and violets.

A glowing full moon illuminated the range of mountains at my back. Fresh, crisp air quenched the heat radiating from my core.

Lavendar. More Blue. Fiery whisps of cloud stretched across the expanse of the sky.


The sun shone on me the entire way home.

It was exceptional.

it's fun. it's free.

Wild horses couldn't have dragged me out of bed promptly at quarter to five this morning for my last long run before the marathon.
Or so I thought.

But then, my alarm clock broke out in song.

"OOOooooOOOOOOOO, oowoo, oowooooooo..... DO IT!"

"OOOooooOOOOOOOO, oowoo, oowooooooo..... DO IT!"

"NO WAY!!!" I thought as I sprang out of bed, beaming.

Believe me, I made every effort to keep my clock from waking up my husband. I did. But it was too late...

Paul started whistling.

There we were, by nightlight in the black of my bedroom at 4:46 a.m...


Shakin' our thangs.


06 October 2006

for life

Ten days from now, it will all be over.

Months and months of training. Miles and more miles logged. One pair of running shoes retired. Another quickly initiated...

26.2 is just around the corner, and in all honesty, the last few weeks have been brutal - surprisingly, the most difficult thus far. I'm spent. I'm done. Getting out of bed has become nothing short of impossible. For weeks I have stuggled with insatiable hunger, perpetual exhaustion and looming discouragement.

My ipod crashed at the end of June and since then, I have run in silence. No music, just thoughts. Mostly His voice and mine. But recently another voice, a cancerous voice, has tormented.

It prods. It pushes. It patronizes.

"Why are you doing this?" The quiet whisper has brushed my ears and lingered in my thoughts with every pounding step.

"WHY are you doing this?" it asks again.

louder. Louder. LOUDER. Was that its voice or mine?



After weeks of frustration, I've had enough. This morning, I finally made the choice. This morning, I pressed into the silence and rolled out of bed. This morning, the music returned.

A familiar song. A familiar route... Up my street and onto the trail. I powered on. I pressed in. With tears and triumph I steadily... confidently pounded my way up the hill I'd once called "big killer," then "adversary," now... "friend."

"I run for hope. I run to feel. I run for the truth, for all that is real..."

louder. Louder. LOUDER.

"I run for your mother, your sister, your daughter, your wife...

I run for you and me, my friend, I run for life."

Fist in the air once again... praising. REJOICING... I reached the summit and found my answer.

For Christi. For Taylor. For Mrs. White. For Maya. For my Mom. For my Grandma. For me.

for Pat. For Pat. FOR PAT.

I run for life.