Well it happened. On April 28, 2012, I ran my first 5K. First to give props for a good cause. I ran Angels Among Us @ Duke Cancer Center supporting the Preston Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center. Angels Among Us has raised over $10,000,000 dollars for brain tumor research since 1994.
This was a very difficult day for me mentally. I really wanted to run and complete the race because I knew physically I could do it. But my head, like always, was trying to derail my success. About 30 minutes prior to the race I was doing everything I could to keep it together. TED kept telling me that if I just backed out now, I wouldn’t have to say I failed. I knew that if I failed it would be such a mental setback for me. I even contemplated just leaving. No one would notice one runner missing out of 1000s. If it wasn’t for my husband reminding me that I trained for this moment and I would finish, I am sure I would have left. He promised me that I would not be last, because he would always be behind me.
So we proceeded to the start line. As I wait anxiously for the start, I just start tearing up. I am so scared that TED would be right. He usually is so why not now. I listened to the music and tried to focus on the task at hand. I kept saying over and over “Angel, get out of your head.” Then it happened, they started running. OMG! I am going to do this. Happy or scared – not sure which was the stronger feeling at this point.
The fact that there were so many runners ended up being such a good thing. I had to focus on where I was stepping and weaving around others to keep my pace. We took off up the hill (yeah, right it started with a hill ~ what were they thinking). As I topped the hill I realized that I was not listening to any voices in my head. This made me cry because I knew at this moment that I WAS DOING IT! Along the way there were numerous times I contemplated taking the short cuts (which is my style) but I just kept running. I was not going to cheat myself this time.
When I saw the finish line, I again began to cry. I couldn’t believe it. I had done it. I had run my first 5K. When I crossed the finish line, I immediately looked back to find Jimmy just a few steps behind me (just like he promised) even though we were not last. I actually set a PR. I completed my first 5K in 34:29. Not only did I do it, I did it better than I had ever done it before.
Thank you so much to everyone who encouraged me along the way. I am finding that I am a much stronger woman than I give myself credit. I know that I can navigate my way through this recovery because I have Jimmy and all my friends and family just One Step Behind Me!