With not much of a plan in place other than to pick up my packet and get a run in, we walked out our hotel and right into a cab for a ride to the expo.
Security was tight, bags were checked and several officers in view as the masses of people were all around us trying to navigate all the same places. I found where I picked up my bib and I have to say - the volunteers are SO NICE!
After donning my Runner's Passport, we headed to pick my shirt and then find the expo. Holy SMOKES! So much to see at the expo. The line to purchase official BAA items was pretty long so once I decided on the size of my official jacket, we got in the queue to wait our turn.
(signing my name on the HUGE banner)
Everyone is so friendly and nice, and I found myself looking at everyone's shoes. Saucony's here......Brooks there...... Adidas popping up now and again........lot's of Asics. Pretty sick that I look at shoes before I notice much more. After getting the official BAA gear, we ended up in the rest of the large expo. I checked a few vendors just to see what prices were and then we decided to find food.
Quick stop in the food court of the mall, a jaunt to the grocery store, a hat for Splenda Daddy and then we wandered towards the finish line. It was lined with people taking pictures and it appeared that there were several cameras in place (I think the 5k was earlier). Pretty amazing to be standing there in the middle of the road with the spectator viewing boxes set up on the side. Of course no way was I going to even step foot on the actual finish line. Bad luck dude!
We found the library and got in line to see the Memorial that had been set up. If I thought I was emotional before, I thought wrong. It was quiet in the room where the items had been set up, with no one speaking. We just walked along, took pictures and soaked up the Spirit of the room.
(I love this - we are all Boston Marthoners at heart)
Trees with love notes hanging from them
I added my own note of love
As I walked out and back into the sunlight I felt even more humbled and grateful to be here. As I looked around me at all the amazing and elite athlete's, I found myself questioning my worthiness to be here. I know on paper, I qualified and I earned the right to be running this, but wow, I am definitely feeling out of my league. Like it was just a hoax and that I'm not really supposed to be here.
Splenda Daddy and I walked around for a bit before we hailed a cab and headed back to the hotel. From there, we walked to where we thought was a nice park for me to get a run in, but instead, it was just a little patch of grass. Concrete is everywhere to the idea of running 20 minutes outside is unappealing. Instead, I hit the treadmill which really is pretty symbolic.
6 years ago and MANY pounds heavier, my journey began on a treadmill. A fat, middle aged, worn out and frazzled mother attempting to get lose some weight, get healthy and alleviate some stress. I wore baggy sweats and oversized tshirts to hide my body and used the treadmill to walk/jog/run on for months before I got brave enough to go back to any kind of fitness class.
Tonight. my last run before the biggest of my life, seemed fitting to be on the treadmill. At about a buck-seventeen, in a tank and shorts, the woman on the treadmill tonight is much different than the woman 6 years ago. The woman now has more confidence. She is stronger physically, emotionally and spiritually, She has learned many valuable life lessons through unspeakable trials and tests that could have easily done her in but instead - she's strong. She's determined to be happy and to infuse other's with happiness if she can. She recognizes God in her life and all the good people He has placed in her path to add to the joy and beauty of life. She has confidence in her attempts. Her attempts at being a good wife, a good mother, a good friend. She has inner peace. She knows that where she is in life, is exactly where she should be.
So even though I spent much of the day with an inner voice telling me I'm a fraud for being here, I've been able to silence it for tonight and concentrate on one day at a time. Tomorrow is Easter. I think I need to set aside all the "Boston talk". I spent today remembering Boston. Remembering my own journey. Tomorrow will be a day of remembering my Savior and the Easter celebration. For without God, none of this would be possible.