Don’t let the terrorists win is something I say way too often. And for any reason. But just don’t.
For the first time in a while I wasn’t going to run or spectate in Boston and I was a bit upset about it. I had, quite frankly, gotten used to this tradition. And I love traditions.
When I read of the bombings I just couldn’t believe it, but I had to calm myself down and do a lot of anxiety management. I had people calling me, texting me, and emailing me from all over the world to see that I was ok. It was a lot of messages, a lot. The boyfriend called me right away to tell me how happy he was we didn’t go and that he’d be picking me up from work. I said “I need to go for a run”.
I spent the next few hours in shock, checking for all my Boston-running friends to pop up somewhere, and replying to a million people in all languages, that I was in NYC and not in Boston. Why someone would do this is something I will never understand, but I never thought I’d see police tape at a finish line. I never thought my sport would mix with terrorism, if that is what this was. And after the drama filled NYC marathon, I was happy to have a major marathon happen, but never never ever imagined anything like this could be. And, oh what this will do for London this weekend and NYCM this Fall. We’ll probably need 3 pieces of ID and being naked (just like in my pre-marathon nightmares!) to get into the Athletes Village. Oh well.
Still, one of my first thoughts was that this would NOT change a runner’s wish to run a marathon, QUITE THE OPPOSITE. I understand a few people might be scared to race, but then, you let the terrorists win. Don’t let this one act of horror, by one or a few people, change how you see the rest of the world. Everyone in Boston was helping and grieving. If you look at the videos of the explosions, people run towards it to help, not away from it. Runners went straight to donate blood, after completing a marathon for Pre’s sake. People set up a site to offer housing to people stranded in Boston… Bad stuff will always happen, anywhere, don’t let it scare you. Don’t let them win. Go for a run and let’s see what we can do for the people affected. I am sure there are runs to be set up to fundraise, blood to be donated, and many things we can all do to help.
Me, I hadn’t run more than one 7 mile run in around 10 days but had to go out. I was sad, furious, upset, spent, but I needed to get to the park, as unsafe as that could sound. Of course, the bf came with me but I felt that putting my Boston Finisher shirt and going for a run was an act of rebellion and trust and love and the same time. It made me feel a bit better, even if I still will never understand. (I might actually sign up for Boston for next year).
If you are racing (or running) this weekend, here is a bib you can print and wear to support Boston