Early on a Saturday night nearly a month a half ago, I laid out my Team World Vision jersey on my bed and pinned on my race bib. This was it. Tomorrow was the race. There was no more preparation to be done. I'd loaded all the carbs. There was no more training left, no more foam rolling, no more time. My mom and my in-laws had all arrived to care for our children while we ran and everyone was tucked into bed.
I'd spent much of the days preceding out in the rain at the race expo talking to runners about Team World Vision at the orange tent. Well, that, and wandering the flooded parking lot of Dodger stadium in the torrential downpour looking for a miracle product that would heal my bum knee, fretting about how to run 26.2 miles soaking wet. I bought compression socks. I treated myself to a long-sleeve shirt to wear under my jersey. I bought a new hat. I was going to break all the rules for race day (rule #1 for race day: Try NOTHING new!) because I'd never run in a frog strangler before and I was mad about that. I was upset that my knee was screwed up. I was already so tired.
So very, very tired
As I was laying out my race gear, I heard a crazy sound outside. It had been pitter-pattering rain all day, and now it sounded like rocks were pounding down on our house.
John scooped up a handful of hail off the driveway and wordlessly brought it in to show me.
This … was ominous.
But come hell or high water (or hail. Or bum knee. Or WORSE, heaven help us) I was going to run that race. I obsessively checked the weather, hoping for some miraculous change in forecast. It never came.
I was going to have to accept that I was going to have to toe the line of an already challenging race in terrible weather conditions. I was going to have to accept that my knee was going to hurt. I was going to have to accept that I was already exhausted from the week's activities leading up to race. This was going to be hard.
But it must be done. This wasn't about me. This wasn't about a bucket list.
This was something bigger than me. This was a calling. And no one ever promised it was going to be easy.