Friday, March 19, 2010
Fabulous? Probably not for most people, but for me... yes. This weekend, just one week shy of my daughters first birthday I will be running the NYC half marathon. 13.1 miles after flying from Oklahoma to NYC may not sound like fun to most. I get that, but for me it is. This race marks a huge accomplishment (if I finish) after training since September for a February marathon, getting injured, missing that race and by sheer luck getting picked for the NYC half in a lottery. It's way beyond this race for me. When I run I run because I was the kid who couldn't run a foot. I was overweight, had terrible asthma and probably just didn't want to put in the effort. I dreaded running. Little did I know that the thing I loathed as a child would get me through the toughest time in my life and later make me stronger mentally and physically for everything else to come.
I ran away from a war. A war that in my mind I didn't know if my husband was coming home from. I ran away from having to go home to an empty house at night. I ran from my fears and anxiety. The final 5 mile race I ran in Central Park on October 28th 2007 had a private and personal deal attached to it. I promised myself that if I finished that race (it was my longest run to date) Steve was coming home safe and sound and I had to stop running away. So, I finished... 14 months of a horrible horrible deployment for our Army Brigade hit me at the finish line and every emotion I bottled up came pouring out. My husband came home safe and sound. We had a beautiful little girl in 2009 and after a very very long pregnancy of not being able to run, I am back. Any running mom will tell you that it is ALOT of work. Oklahoma terrain is definitely a place to challenge yourself and I think I am understanding why the Army put Basic Training here. Did you know that it was possible for wind to constantly blow in all directions continuously and just never go away? I have embraced the Southwest and as I head home to New York, I have a lot of attachment to my little Wichita Mountain Range in Oklahoma.. America is really beautiful- you just have to go out and experience it for what it is and nothing more.
SO... my entire point of this post is that I have continued to run for many reasons. I run for my mind so that I am a better mom, a better wife and a better member of society. But in my heart I am running in honor of for all service members who are likely dealing with a lot worse than a measly 13.1 mile run. To the Veterans who literally, cannot run. I run for them.
So as I cruise down 7th Avenue where my life started as a student at F.I.T., straight into lower Manhattan where our world changed forever right in front of my eyes...I will remember when I run, I am always moving forward. Even if sometimes it helps me run away.
Fingers Crossed, wish me luck.
Posted by Danelle Florio at 8:00 AM