After thinking about what I shared with you this week, "A Journey of Discovery and Weight Loss" and especially after reading a sweet email from a stranger who's just starting out this journey, I feel like my story wouldn't be complete without my sharing this P.S. or"post script" with you. I feel a strong prompting to do so; it's something that I just can't ignore. I hope you'll bear with me. (I don't want to keep dragging this thing on and on.) Today's and tomorrow's post will focus on my marathon experience I wrote about on my other blog last May. I don't feel like I spent quite enough time on the impact this life changing and learning experience was and has had on me on so many levels.
After tomorrow, we'll be done. I promise.
Friday, May 14, 2010
My mind is pretty much consumed with tomorrow's marathon. The only thing that can compare with what I'm feeling, maybe, is gearing up for childbirth or some other huge life event. After these last two years of dedicated running and training and pain and sacrifice, I guess it's to be expected. It's hard to focus on anything else, really. Here's where I'm at today: There's excitement that my dream and hard work is going to become a reality very soon. The anticipation is building like a child waiting for Christmas. The nervous butterflies are fluttering around in my stomach, and I'm trying desperately to make them fly "single file". And all the preparations, both mental and physical are all-encompassing.
Do you know what? I'm loving all the carbs I've been eating lately. It's so nice to know that I need to eat lots and that I should eat lots. The idea is to build up one's glycogen stores or energy reserves to go such a distance. I'm loving the thick white bread sandwiches, the rice, the muffins and pancakes, the treats from thoughtful, well- wishing friends and family. Last night, we met some friends at Olive Garden who are also running the marathon for a big carbo-pasta fest. That was very fun.
I've cut back drastically with my running this week and a bit from last week's. It feels weird. I'm hoping that all this rest will do my muscles good. As far as sleeping goes, that's been a challenge. I'm not sleeping very well and that's frustrating. I can't sleep past 4:30 or 5 in the morning, and last night I probably got three hours; I just tossed and turned all night long. I'm sure tonight will be the same story. Later in the day, it catches up to me, but it's so difficult to take a good nap during the day.
I appreciated so much the priesthood blessing Keith gave me Monday night. It's given me a lot of peace and reassurance. What a gift and a privilege to have that so freely made available to me. Among other promises, he reminded me that angels would run before me, beside me, and behind me. I strongly feel that among these will be both sets of my grandparents who lived in Ogden most of their lives.
I think that most of the preparation I'm doing is going on in my brain. I've been trying to gather the strength and courage I need and know is there. I've been thinking about a few things that have have helped me that I'd like to share with you as we are all on some sort of journey, "marathon", or enduring to the end type experience at different times in our lives.
When we saw the movie Alice in Wonderland, there were some themes that really rang true for me. Alice is now at a coming- of- age point in her life. She's already visited Underland and has forgotten almost everything. The various characters debate if she's "the" real Alice. The Mad Hatter says something to the effect that she used to be "much muchier" before. That she was much more "Alice" the last time they had met and that she had lost her "muchness". She discovers the prophecy that she is and always has been the chosen warrior to defeat the terrible Jabberwocky. She needs to have faith in and take hold of the Vorpal sword and let it do its job. She doesn't know how it could be possible to do such an enormous task. She's lost confidence. She doesn't see, or has somehow forgotten, the true essence of who she really is, what she is capable of, and the power and courage she has deep down inside herself that everyone else but she can see.
It made me think of me and what I've learned with this marathon experience. Do I have the "muchness" that is required for me to slay this dragon of a marathon? Even to this point of not having completed such a task, I can say that I am more "muchier" now than I've ever been. So... I've been visualizing my "muchness". My mantra on Saturday will be, "I can do anything." I've seen change in me that I didn't think was ever possible and that gives me courage to face the scary fears and pain that I'll encounter when I run those 26 miles.
When I attended Women's Conference last month, I attended a class on the Atonement. Most of the time we think of Christ's atonement relating to just death and sin, but the focus of this class was the healing and deliverance that Christ's gift offers us in our every day lives. The man told of an experience when he was a young man, working with his uncle, high up in the Uinta mountains. They were needing to travel a great distance; I think it had to do with transferring a huge number of cattle or something. The uncle told the boy that he needed to walk. The boy said that there was no way he could possibly do such a thing. It was too far. It was just too hard. The uncle told him that if he would just reach out and hold onto his horse's tail, and allow the animal to just lead him along, that would make it possible to complete the journey.
That idea of holding onto the horse's tail, or letting Christ lead me through any difficult journey I might need to go on, is a very powerful image to me. I need to have the faith to reach out to Jesus and let my faith in Him be my guide. I need to remember that even with all that I can do, I need Jesus for miracles to happen in my life and for the obstacles and pain and weakness to be surmounted. He is my Rescuer. He will lead me along.
Well, this will most likely be the last you'll hear from me until next week. If you get a chance, remember me in your prayers. Send good vibes up Ogden canyon. I'll need them. I'll be thinking of you. I'll be holding your hand when I cross that finish line.