"Why do you run?" Gasp! How do I respond?
After reading countless spotlights of the beautiful stories my running friends have shared, I feel a greater connection to them, their stories and to the NYC roads we will share together on November 1st.
Yep, I guess that's it. I run because I'm inspired. I'm inspired by all of the people who put away their daily pains and hit the road running.
Around 2010, my Grams was diagnosed with Alzheimer's. Instead of thinking of the last few years we had with her and how she wasn't truly herself I force myself to remember the good times we had together. I remember when she use to pick us up from school and take us to Baskin Robbins. Mom would never let us have more than a kiddie size. Grams let us have two scoops. She brought me on her shopping trips to Neiman Marcus where all the sales assistants knew her name, where she would request purple eyeshadow, sparkly outfits and the best designers. She was one of a kind.
However, my running inspiration changed last minute as my father unexpectedly passed two months ago. Even writing those words tears stream down my eyes. I was lucky to have one of those relationships with a Dad where the daughter could do no wrong. My heart has been heavy and in immense pain the last few weeks, but I have found strength through remembering his hilariously contagious spirit. He did the quirkiest things. If you know me at all, you know shy is the last word that comes to mind. It was a trait I received from my Dad. The guy never left a building without his presence being known. The stories to share about him are lengthy in nature and will leave you with a smile on your face. One of the favorites my friends like to share is his wonderful night owl quality which allowed them to name him Mr. Makie's taxi service. He was truly the best in every aspect of his life. Although I didn't know it would be our second to last conversation I was lucky enough to tell him he was my inspiration and that has made all the difference in grieving his goodbye.
When I'm running and wanna give up, I channel his voice and can still hear him signing my praise in the nickname he made up for me: "Good going, Gou!"