Day 79 – One year ago……….

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My Mom is the best. I casually mention how my chocolate selection is running low and next thing you know this arrives in the mail.

This also reminded me of this day one year ago. Like most of you I was shocked about the events at the finish line of the Boston marathon. I had been following an RSS feed of the race at work when the news came through of the explosions. What made it worse was I knew that my Mom might be there.

I’ve mentioned her a couple of times on the blog – about how she is my running inspiration. She has run for basically all of my life and I have many memories of being dragged along to races, to expos and “volunteering” at races that she was helping to organize. She has run a sub-3 hour marathon, represented Ireland as a masters runner and has a 38.00 flat 10 k PR.

She is also still involved in the running community in Ireland and often has the chance to travel to expos to promote the Dublin Marathon. This past weekend she was in Rotterdam. Last year she was in Boston.

I immediately called my Dad who was at home in Ireland and I was surprised at how my voice just crumbled when I heard him speak. He hadn’t been able to get through to her but one of her friends had let him know that she had left Boston earlier that morning to get a train down to NYC. People in her group who had been watching the finish had luckily left just about 10 minutes before the first bomb went off. Everyone I knew was OK.

But unfortunately 3 people died that day and almost 260 people were injured. I could easily picture myself as one of those kids watching my parent cross the line. Or imagine my Mom finish an iconic race. I still get choked up thinking about that day.

But the major take home message for me from that day wasn’t about evil or hate or terrorism but the strength of the human spirit. How people’s first reaction was to help those in need. To be selfless and supportive. The best human attributes were out in force that day. And in the days and weeks that followed.

I believe that for the most part people are good, kind and loving. This is especially true in any running community. Runner’s know how hard you need to work to get to the starting line of any marathon – and particularly Boston. It is a symbol of the pinnacle of an amateur runner’s racing career. If you BQ you have made it. To have some cowardly person attempt to destroy this emblem of human sacrifice, camaraderie and perseverance is just so wrong.

During this half marathon training cycle I have never felt burn-out. The events of one year ago have made me appreciate every run I GET to do. I like to think that every run is a little bit for Boston. And a little bit for my Mom.

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26 thoughts on “Day 79 – One year ago……….

  1. I’m so glad your mum is safe. She sounds awesome! I totally agree with you about Boston – it was a terrible and despicable act, but in the end, it only brought the already close knit running community even closer together.

  2. Oh my gosh, I’m so so so happy your mom is safe! I’m so sorry you had to go though the emotions of not knowing. I can’t even imagine how terrified you must have been. You’re strong and your mom is strong. Wow, what an amazing runner your mom is. What an amazing woman indeed! XOXO! Happy Tuesday!

  3. Your mum sounds amazing, so glad to hear that she was ok. I remember where I was when I heard about the bombings and felt so terrible for all those involved.
    Good luck in your training cycle, two great things to dedicate your runs to! x

  4. Really wonderful and touching post. I’m so glad that your mom and everyone that you knew was okay that day.

    I totally agree that the way the community has rallied for what happened is just awe inspiring. I only just started running shortly before it happened, but seeing what happened in the aftermath only made me want to be more of a part of it.

  5. Wow, that’s so amazing! I’m glad your mom was OK. I had friends there and it was really scary not being able to get ahold of them. I used to go to Boston once a month for work, so if you saw my post today, it’s obvious it was emotional for me too!

  6. Thank you for sharing. This post made me cry. What an inspiration that your mom is (I also look up to my mom, as a runner), with an impressive running resume. I can only imagine the emotions of KNOWING someone in Boston that day, as I was a basket of emotions watching the footage, knowing no one that was there. We will never forget those who lost their lives, were injured, or were in any other way affected.

    • Thank you! I think as a runner you can easily imagine running that race or having friends or family watching out for you at the finish – and that’s what really made it so personal for me. Lucky my Mom turned out to be actually pretty far away from the whole thing. I think I’lll always remember that day and the people who were affected.

  7. Wow your mom is an amazing runner! She must be such an inspiration to you. So glad she was safe and sound last year. I agree-it was a terrible tragedy but the outpour of solidarity and kindness overshadowed the evil.

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