Sunday, September 23, 2012

Running Through Pure Michigan


 Beautiful Holland, Michigan.
 Pre-run, while it's still dry.
 Post-race reward meal at the Cottonwood Inn Bed and Breakfast.

 Displaying our medals.

 Beautiful (and cold) Lake Michigan
 We never tired of showing off.
 The boys joined us at Windmill Island.
 Love this photo.  Our boys braved the choppy Lake Michigan waves to secure an awesome view of the water.
Italian night, post race.

I've missed blogging. 

 Last week was rough for our family.  So difficult, that typing out the details seemed too painful.  Writing a chirpy blog post about anything other than the elephant in the room seemed phony.  So this blog sat dormant.

The timing of last week's stress was bad.  Everything went down right before Chris and I were scheduled to travel to Michigan with our friends, the Brinkruffs.  I voiced my concerns about leaving to our babysitters (my parents).  My mom was strong in her assertion that we needed some time away and they could handle everything just fine.  What I've learned from almost four decades as her daughter is that my mother knows what she's talking about and she often knows best.

Of course, she was right.  We needed a break.  Time with friends.  Time with each other.  Time to sleep.

The real point of the trip was a race.  Claudia and I competed in the Holland Park2Park Half Marathon on Saturday.  The race started out in beautiful cool conditions.  We ran through beautiful tree-lined neighborhoods and jogged alongside Lake Michigan.  As we neared the final stretch of the race, the sky darkened.  Thunder crashed in the distance.  Lightning flashed too.  Rain drizzled at first and then saturated the streets.  Hail followed.

I made it to the finish just to find out the race was black flagged.  Our times were treated as "unofficial" results.  Claudia was bummed (she got a PR!).  I was a little too, but just grateful we finished the race (in one piece).  

As I ran through those Michigan streets, I felt the stress of the last week diminish.  I thought about a quote I just read in Born to Run.  The author, Christopher McDougall said, "We run when we're scared, we run when we're ecstatic, we run away from our problems and run around for a good time.  And when things look the worst, we run the most."

I needed that run.

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Thanks to my wonderful parents for watching the boys.  We so appreciate your help!

Thanks to our amazing friends for an awesome weekend!





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