I ran my longest race yet, the Fifth Third River Bank Run 25K (just longer than a half marathon), on Saturday morning. Of course, the temperatures dropped from the lovely warmth of earlier days to low forties accompanied by strong winds and misty rain, but it really wasn't as bad as I had begun to anticipate. Besides, when I'm running in that kind of weather alone, I wonder at my sanity, but running in those conditions with so many other people is simply invigorating. There are 21,000 other people running this morning! I think to myself. I can't be crazy! (Though I hear the cries of the non-runners out there, and yes, there is that chance that we are all crazy...)
There is so much I love about races: the energy that comes from being surrounded by so many that love to run as much as I do, the camaraderie of strangers in this together, the conversations overheard, running in the middle of the road, the children with signs to cheer on their mom or dad, new scenery and parts of the city I rarely see, the feeling of accomplishment when I've crossed the finish line. I'm quite happy with my time and still feel energized. It was a great race.
Now I'm on the lookout for a half marathon to run with my dad in the near future... and dreaming of training for a marathon in the further-off future... someday!
My lovely mother then came up on Saturday afternoon and stayed through today for our celebration of Mother's Day. We had a wonderful time; it was so fun to have her here and play hostess to the woman who showed me how to host in the first place. Dinner out last night at a favorite Spanish restaurant played tribute to our shared love of that country. After church today, we cooked brunch together and sat at my little table, light streaming in through the front window, and as we sipped our coffee out of my favorite bright tea cups, my mom remembered aloud when we purchased these cups and their matching saucers several years ago, from an earthy little coffee shop in Montreal during a summer trip we took along with my dad. And here we were today, drinking our coffee together in my first apartment. I love seeing the threads that tie different times and experiences together, making a whole cohesive something out of our seemingly-random lives.
And on Mother's Day, I must just say that I am increasingly thankful for this incredible woman that graces my life with motherhood and love and friendship. She teaches me so much, from small and practical things--like how to keep mold from building up in my shower and how to scramble eggs really well--to the most crucial--how to love well and practice contentment and not be afraid.
My mother is strong and loyal and kind and compassionate. I want to be like her.
Sometimes life is not all that wonderful. But sometimes, like today, like this weekend, it is. And for that I am thankful.
Cheers, then, to long runs and the beauty of movement and strength in accomplishment, to mothers the world 'round, that very concept of motherhood and my own lovely mother in particular.
I hope your weekends were full of joy also.