In 21 more days (three weeks from today!), I will be running my 9th Boston Marathon. For most of these years (8), I have run for a charity. This year, although I’m still running for a charity, I’m running also as a qualified runner!
My little buddy Everett & I!
Someone recently wondered
snarked if it was “anticlimactic” for me run Boston as a qualified runner…even though I’ve been there 8 times before, surely this one can’t be that special because I’ve been there so many times, right?
The thing about a marathon (or any race, really) is that every one is completely different. There are no two that will be the same for you and each race brings new memories. I like to think of my past Boston’s like this:
–2005: the year I drank coffee while waiting for the start and spent half the race in the porta potty. Lucky for me I have the most amazing BFF who waited almost seven hours for me to finish!
–2008: the year I actually DROPPED my phone INTO a porta potty at the start of the race. Like right before the start…
–2009: the first year my husband was a part of the race and brought me to the starting buses in Boston.
–2010: the year that the MOST people went to the race to see me run-like 20 peeps! And the first year my husband came to the finish line!
2011: the year my husband had to work and couldn’t come 😦
2012: the year of the heat…like 80 at the start. It was also the year my friends made a life size cardboard cutout of me and took pics of “me” all around Boston. They also made cutouts of my face on Popsicle sticks and there were “Nicole’s” in all the pictures. Tooooo funny……it was awesome!
Look! It’s Me…and ME!
I’m with the band…
–2013: it would’ve been my best Boston time yet. But I never got to finish.
–2014: the first year post bomb. A totally different marathon experience…game changer. My friends are strong, and they rallied around me. #blessed
What will 2015 be the year of? It’s already so many things… It’s the first year my SIL has ever done a marathon. The first time we will drive to Hopkington and squeak out our anticipations, fetter out our worries, and soothe one another’s nerves.
And, it’s the first year I’m running as a qualified runner. Returning as a BQ’d entrant isn’t at all anticlimactic. The thing about me is that when something grabs my heart-it never let’s go. Never. And the Boston Marathon grabbed my heart a very long time ago. The fact that I ran so many times as an “unqualified” runner has never once mattered to me. I knew, without a doubt, that I would get to this point. I’ve never felt like I didn’t belong at the starting line because Boston is my race. I want to still be running it when I’m 85. Its always had a piece of my heart, and that piece grew a little bit bigger back in 2013 after the bombings. It got even bigger in 2014 when I saw the strength of my city, my friends, and my family.
I can’t wait to see what this year brings me.
I bleed blue and yellow!💙💛💙💛