Saturday, January 26, 2013

No News Is...

good news?

No word on my appeal for new prostheses from BC/BS this week. From people who deal with appeals, they thought this might take 3 - 5 days, so mine is just over a business week. I am hoping this is a case of "no news is good news" but I desperately need to hear some good news soon. Pam who handles the insurance paperwork at ProCare has been very supportive during this trying time. None of us understand this denial.

After I posted on Facebook about the problems I was having with my old prosthesis and being denied a new one, there was an outpouring of prayers, thoughts, and support from my friends and family.

And then something happened. I have no other explanation other than another little miracle, or perhaps not so little when I think about it. I changed my running routine to two shorter training runs each day, but I had to keep my long weekend run intact, which was 17 miles last weekend.

I could still feel the sensitivity in my socket at times, but it never exploded into the discomfort that would force me onto crutches. Although I slowed considerably over the last few miles, I got this key workout done. I should already have completed a couple of 20 mile runs according to my training plan, but I am grateful I can run at all right now. I am tweaking my schedule often depending on my physical conditioning and prosthetic issues, and I still hope to get 3 or 4 20 milers in before the race.

Tomorrow I plan on 18.5 miles. Yes, an odd distance but halfway between the 17 I have done and the 20 I need to do. Next weekend I will drop back, maybe even do a half marathon, and then the following week go after 20.

20 miles is a key confidence builder. For me it usually takes at least 2 or 3 of them before I start feeling strong and comfortable at the distance. My confidence was shattered after the first attempt at 20 miles detailed here. I felt like Boston was again dissolving into a waking dream. But now, on the cusp of a 50 mile training week, that confidence is rising.

I am once again as excited about the race as I ever was. I just wrote on FB that I feel like a kid waiting on Christmas; as a kid we think that day will never arrive, yet for Boston I know it will be here before we know it. Indeed, it is just over 11 weeks. That leaves 9 weeks of training as I will only do a 2 week taper.

Then there was more good news. Kelly Luckett asked that my wife Jennifer run as one of her guides for half of the race. We're not certain which half (or a little more) at this point as plans are still being formulated. Still, I am so happy Jennifer will get to participate in the race, as I know she, like me, thought she would never be on this most famous of marathon race courses.

This day just grows more special. Family as well as new and old friends will be there to support us as spectators. Ashley will be there. My stepson and his wife Kristen will be there. Kim, a dear friend of Jay's, will be there. Grit and Jodi will be there. And of course the runners and guides and someone who we will all be thinking about on the greatest day in distance running: we will be running with The Greatest.

A place for remembering The Greatest
Jason Pisano

I am going to be out of my mind that weekend. The one thing we can always expect from the marathon is the unexpected. I have never run this distance without a huge struggle in the last miles no matter how high my fitness level was. This will be my second marathon as an amputee. I do know this, as long as I finish the race it will be the most rewarding. Not for any time I may finish that day, but for all the friends we have made along the way. Be they there or not there, we will run with them every step of the way.

One day Ashley may be on this very course in her racing chair, teaming with someone to show the world what it means to have the heart of a champion, of someone who has faced adversity like few others, to see that the legacy of Jay, Impossible Is Nothing, is more than wordplay. It is the very nature of this miracle of life we share.

Dum spiro spero

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