Well I just have to say, I've been super excited and pumped and jazzed and all GUNG HO all week since I made the decision to go to Texas this weekend!
I'm excited for a lot of reasons... you know, as much as I love my husband and daughter, the thought of a weekend all to myself is really quite luring. It brings me back to my single days. I was single for a long time (didn't get married until I was 34) and while I would not trade my current life for my old life, there are times when I look back with longing at the days when I had very little real responsibility.
You know that I made a list of things to pack and did not have diapers or wipes or sippy cups or etch-a-sketch on the list? I used to think that the list of things to pack to take to a race was long and there was so much to bring... Now I have a new perspective. Packing for triathlon is NOT hard when you're going alone.
But even more than that, I am excited to go do this particular race again. I've done it once before. In 1999.
If you've been reading my blog for a while then you know a bit of my health history. This is the race I did while I was going through chemo 11 years ago. The one I did to prove to myself that cancer was not going to get the best of me. The one I did to prove to myself that I could continue living my life. Loving my life. I would continue to be ME.
All week I've had flashbacks to racing the Lubbock course. If I remember correctly (and how could I possibly forget??), I was swearing, out loud, at the end of the bike. I think I was swearing at the wind. It was windy. It was hot. I remember hills. Like canyons that you would ride down into and then have to climb out the other side. And I don't remember much shade on the run course.
I found this picture of myself running in Lubbock in 1999. I know the quality of this picture is not good- it's an old photo and has moved a bunch of times with me over the last 11 years. It's one of the only race pictures of myself that I actually have out on a shelf at my house. This one just means a little more to me because of the circumstances under which I was running. It's a reminder that we can do anything we want to do. Truly. Anything.
Would you believe I *still* have that bathing suit? Yep. I do.
So this year the race is once again on June 27. I think it's just so cool that I get to go back and do it again. Under different circumstances this time. It'll still be hot. (Um, 101 degrees on race day? Holy hell.) It'll still be windy. And there will still be canyons to climb out of. But this time, I'm going in as a contender. You know, even if I don't walk away with a Kona spot, the fact that I believe the possibility is there, 11 years after doing this race while undergoing chemo, is a win in my book. Yes. I've already won.
And I dug out a cool shirt to wear on the plane trip over.