"Courage is the Price life extracts for granting peace." -Amelia Earhart
|After running 26.2 miles|
My Dad died the day after Father's Day.
It was a beautiful June evening...the kind
my Dad liked best.
Hours before he closed his eyes
one last time I sat
on the edge of his bed, stroking his
forehead...feeling the warmth of his skin.
I knew it would be the last time I felt
him that way. The end of his life
was near and I was saying my
As he lay there, weak and unable
to speak...I made my Daddy a
I told him I would change my life.
I would live each and everyday.
I would never, ever take another moment for granted.
"I PROMISE you, Dad."
Three years later I found myself,
sitting in a conference room in
signing up for the Leukemia Society's
Team in Training.
|A few of my teammates|
"The power to change yourself is the power to change the world around you." -Anwar Sadat
From January to June 1999
I trained 6 days a week.
Now you MUST know that before this
I was NOT a runner. I was in shape...but running
had never been something I did.
I was determined though and
soon found myself running
|An excerpt from my training journal|
What makes Team in Training so unique...
is that not only do you train and run a marathon...
you train and run with a TEAM.
And if that weren't cool enough
we were all able to meet with the
sweet, little girl we were running for...
Melody. She was only 7 years old and had
already been battling the ugly disease.
|Part of my Team with Melody. That's me in the red jacket on back right.|
"Life is lived in the present. Yesterday has gone, tomorrow is yet to be. Today is the miracle.
I live in Maryville...approx. 100 miles north of Kansas City.
My Team trained in KC every Saturday
and I was determined to make EACH Team day.
But just how would that work??
Keep in mind my son Jackson was just 4
and Emma wouldn't turn
two until May.
Along came my MOM to the rescue!
Dave and I would get up at 3:30 AM,
shower, get the kids ready, take them
to Grammy's and hit the road.
Our runs were often in south KC
so that meant longer driving time.
And did I mention they started at 6 or 6:30 AM?
|Jacks, Me and my Mom at the Pasta Dinner the night before the race.|
"Confidence is the inner voice that says you are becoming what you are capable of being."
I know you can't read what I wrote here...so here is an excerpt....
"This was a turning point in my life....14 miles with Team. I can walk this...even though it's the longest distance I've ever done! A few blocks into my walk I spied Terri and Lora. They were running so I decided to try and keep up. I challenged myself beyond my comfort zone. We amazed ourselves by running 2 miles without walking. What the heck, we thought...let's see how far we can go! 2 miles turned into 3. 4, then 7 our turning point. We were feeling strong. We kept going. By Mile 10 my left leg was going completely numb. I wanted to STOP! To walk. To keep myself going I would only look at Terri and Lora's feet pounding the pavement, very rhythmic. My lungs felt like they were going to burst. At Mile 12 I said FORGET IT! I was limping...The girls looked at me said... We have gone this far, Les...LET'S GO!! I went. I hurt. I wanted to cry. At last we came to Mile 14. I had made it! I felt so POWERFUL! ACCOMPLISHED! I grinned the rest of the day! My life was evolving into something I had only imagined. What a feeling to be living a long sought after dream. My anthem from this day on has been the song "Change in my Life" from the movie "Leap of Faith". One of my DAD'S fave films."
**Be sure and listen to that song at the end of this post. You will LOVE it!
Here is a story they did during my training. This article and race gave me courage to ask if I could write a column for the paper. I went on to write my column "View from the Front Porch" for several years.
Running this marathon 14 years ago completely changed my life, girls. I will share more photos and the finish line with you in Fridays post. Thanks so much for taking the time to read!
Here is my song Change in my Life