Going back to 2007 when I still had two anatomical feet, I had given up on this dream ever becoming reality. I was training for the Jacksonville Marathon and my running times had been become stuck with my foot pain only increasing over time. One day that November my right foot found a small pavement depression and I believe the last of my peroneal tendon shredded. I limped home and knew I'd never make the starting line in Florida.
Not only was I not going to run another marathon, but a lifetime of running came to a hard stop. There would be no more races. No evening runs where twilight transformed me into a golden, winged messenger. I would not stand on another starting line chasing ever distant PRs. The life of this runner was over. Finished.
Yet I could not let go. Something in my mind, despite the reality, would not let go. I had faith in nothing at all but faith in what I was.
Then I let go.
I let go of a part of me, one of a pair that had carried me throughout my life. I had to lose a very real part of me, to regain myself. How odd to feel a part of you has preceded you into the forever, detached and no longer living.
And from that loss I become alive again, alive in a way far beyond any dream possible. Seeing life as a new citizen, living a new life as a different me.
From reality to dream to reality, I will now find myself standing on the starting line of the 2012 Boston Marathon. I will be there with my mobility impaired friends, two who will be Kelly Luckett and Shariff Abdullah. From our losses we will look within and find spirits that will not be stopped, the spirits that are us.