Marathon

I had been awake since 3 a.m. and was exhausted.  I told Jessie to not let me sleep any longer than two hours this afternoon for fear that I would foul up yet another night’s slumber.  As I lay on the couch crashed out, I vaguely heard the phone ringing.  Then the doorbell.  Soon the familiar, yet somehow frantic, sound of text messages invading my phone knocked me out of my desperately needed nap.

Blissfully unaware of the insanity that was unfolding a mere five miles from my house, I quickly realized that something was going on and it was not anything good.  I reached for my cell phone to find text after text making sure that I was okay and that the kids were home.  Still not knowing what had happened, I booted up my sleeping computer and went to www.boston.com.    Another day we will never forget.

For those who don’t know, The Boston Marathon is in the blood of anyone who has ever called Boston home.  Stretching the 26+ miles from Hopkinton into Boston, it is a thrilling event to watch.  It is impossible to be among the throngs of people watching the runners and not be covered in goosebumps and filled with awe.  The runners are our friends, our neighbors and our family.  They have trained incessantly for this day and are so wildly supported by the cheering fans all along the route that finishing is just what they do.  (No, I have never run a marathon, but both of my brothers and two of my sisters in law have.  I leave the running to others.)

Today, much like September 11th, was picture perfect.  The temperature was ideal for both the runners and the spectators. There was not a cloud in the sky.  Set against the iconic background of Back Bay, the runners were nearing the finish line: checking their times, relishing their accomplishment and suddenly jarred by an explosion.  The world has changed, yet again.

Soon after word spread in my neighborhood, four of my girlfriends came to my house.  We hugged.  We opened (and killed) a bottle of wine.  We watched, as much as we were able, the live news feed.  And we reminded one another, without saying a word, that we would get through this together.

Life is precious and increasingly unpredictable and frightening.  Think long and hard about what matters.  And pray for the families who will forever remember the 2013 Boston Marathon for all the wrong reasons.

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8 thoughts on “Marathon

  1. Years ago, I was a student at Boston College and the marathon meant a day away from classes and a reason to enjoy the springtime. Today, I was one of those people posting on facebook making sure that friends are all accounted for. What a tragic event. Thinking of you and the entire community.

  2. Thanks for saying it so eloquently. Our hearts are aching. Marathon Day is such a unique and glorious rite of spring for all of us here in Boston, but as you said, it’s in our blood. It will never feel quite the same.

  3. Julie, I was so happy to see your post this morning. You and yours were among some of my first thoughts after hearing the news yesterday. May we all be able to one day find our desperately needed peace without fear of awaking to another nightmare.

  4. Agreed. This all too tragic event has rocked our community once again. The horror of this event and those like it, take a piece of all of us, leaving an aching void. My heart goes out to those most suffering. It pains me to know that each time I look at my own child, I catch my breathe a little knowing how fragile life is – how precious each tiny moment is.

  5. It makes you lose your faith in humanity, doesn’t it?

    Every time something like this happens I have to remind myself that all over the world there are those who live with that constant fear of the next tragedy and that sense of hopelessness every single day of their lives as well, so I keep them in my prayers as well.

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