To My 3 Daughters,
I know my training sometimes takes a toll on you that I don't always realize. I am sometimes tired, and I get distracted when you're telling me what you did at school...or the amazing book you just started from the library...for that I am truly, deeply sorry...sorry for not always being as attentive as you need me to be at that moment...x the three of you.
I am so sorry I forgot to remind your grandparents about your history project presentation. I forgot to pack two snacks because in 4th grade you have snack 2x. And my littlest, yes, I keep falling asleep when you are practicing your amazing 1st grade reading skills.
What you may not realize, that someday I hope you will see...all my training, all my running...every time I set out to conquer something new...I do it for you. Well, it is for me first...but 2nd most important...Iam trying to teach you in the only way I know how...so that you learn all the things I wish I had known. There are so many things I want you to know, so many skills for you to learn, so that you can be the strong, independent & world changing women I think you will be someday.
So here's my list of what I hope for you some day...and how I got to be the person I am today...someone who sometimes is distracted, or limping down the stairs....or signing up for a race I have no time or business training for with my only 80 percent well body...believe it or not, I do it all for you....
1. Don't ever, ever take "you can't" as the final answer when it comes to your abilities. I started a running career based on "you are just not built for long distance running." Use that to fuel you when you are about to give up...on a run, on the field, in the classroom...wherever...nobody can tell you, you can't, except you...and if you choose to give up, it's your choice. But, remember this...you have my stubborn persistance...so it will sit better with you to try and fail than to give up.
2. It's okay to put yourself first sometimes...you will need to learn this an adult and especially when you are managing your own family some day. I know you wouldn't believe this now but some day, you will realize I probably should have put myself first more often. Training for Boston right now, is so hard. With all your ski racing, basketball, and now LAX starting up...the one time I do put myself ahead of you all is when it is bedtime...when I've crawled into bed at 9pm and fallen asleep immediately. Can you even imagine what it's like training for a marathon while trying to fuel your own kids' dreams of Olympic Ski Team? I do get cranky when you need to be in bed...because I am exhausted. When you take care of yourself first, you are able to help many more people around you. Remember this. And whether you become an Olympic skier, an artist, or a politician...sleep is the cure for everything.
3. You are beautiful....I am still running a lot & running hard trying to figure this one out. I hope for you that you realize that just because you don't fit into the "norm" doesn't mean you aren't perfectly beautiful. I've wasted a whole half of my life fighting this one...you are going to be very tall. You are likely going to have beautiful strong shoulders. I know you will have very long, very strong legs....you are beautiful. Just the way you are. You will not be of normal height or build. You won't blend in. And you probably won't be a 120lb supermodel (thank God!!!) If I had taken up running earlier in my life...it might have saved me a lot of heartache and health problems. I run now because it is the one time I do feel beautiful and can embrace my strength and be at ease with it....even when I am not completely well...inside or out. I hope you will always feel beautiful for who you are no matter what you are doing....because you are perfect exactly the way you are.
4. You have no limits...Bdawg, right now you want to be an Olympic ski racer, archeologist, and have your own business (that ski sled for race day equipment should be patented! Like now before college!)....you can do it all. All it takes is hard work. And maybe you my middle...will surprise us all...you with your little technical brain...trying to create websites and playing chess and out skiing the whole family....the world is at your finger tips, you can, you absolutely can. And my big baby...my little Gronk...always smiling, easy...you could be a world famous artist while "out playing" your whole family at any sport..I just know with your organic and clean eating habits..once you find your sport, you will out play and out muscle us all...all while keeping us entertained with your comic ways.
5. Be proud to be yourself...I will never run as fast as one of dear friends. That's okay. I may never run another marathon after Boston...and that's okay. I am a squeaker...I qualified by the skin of my teeth...but I did it. I won't be breaking any PR's on April 20th...but I will hold my head high because I got the golden ticket to start & no matter how long it takes me, I will be proud to finish. And I will be thinking of you girls the whole time...because on many of those lonely 18, 19, 20 mile training runs...I thought of you...and how proud I am for the girls you are becoming. I am so proud of all three of you...for being you, just the way you are.
I love you all so very much. I will see you after the finish...and I will try to give all three of you my utmost attention and not fall asleep when I get home after the race.
- What started as a little experiment in blogging has evolved into my renewed love for writing the raw, gritty truth. Running has always had so many parallels to life's ups and downs. As a new cancer survivor/fighter, running and writing has continued to be there for me in my quest to always move forward, always try to be better than yesterday. Find me: http://www.curetoday.com/community/kate or on facebook: running, cancer, and everything in between or on twitter: runliftbreathe