A few weeks ago, someone I know happened to ask, “Does anyone want my Tinkerbell bib?” As with everything else, first I looked at the calendar. Free. Then, my dog sitter. Free. I was the first to respond…Yes. Yes I want it.
Warning. This is super long.
It was going to be what got me through the rest of January, ending 30 days of relationship psychosis, where everything is questioned, and realities come to pass. Unreal. My family asked me, “Are you okay?” And of course, if you know my family, you say…
On Thursday, I packed up my office laptop, drove to have a meeting and lunch in Fresno with a girlfriend, and barely got out of town before I had some now familiar anxiety when it comes to this particular addiction. I got my sponsor on the phone, and down the 99 I traveled, to that place that we all love. Our childhood home. It’s here where my Mom and Dad will provide me with that most precious quality of love. The kind that asks no questions. My sisters came. Everyone knew why I was there. And, it wasn’t to run a half marathon.
Of course, the weekend was made ever so special by my sweet niece, who brought over the love of my life…aka Jack. I am so in love with this baby. Seriously, when I would get sad, I would just look at this picture and swoon.
My gal pal Penny then invited me on the set of GLEE, and I was all pretending not to be star struck, but she pulled me over to meet some of the cast, and I was simply tongue tied. She bought me the most wonderful dinner at the Larchmont Grill, and we made plans for the Tinkerbell Half…HELLO Mac and Cheese with bacon. OMG.
I spent the expo day with friends, and was really feeling the absence. Letting myself feel it, but couldn’t stand it, so I thought I’d run away to a meeting, when here in front of me was the exact, um, model of Harley I’d been racing from. I couldn’t even believe it. I walked in the meeting and was near tears…as usual when I shared, we all started laughing…cuz you know, you can’t outrun pain. You just gotta go through it after all.
Okay. So the escape was over. I faced my fears.
TINKERBELL RACE REPORT
So finally, here is the report.
I make it to Yas’ house, and lay out my stuff. No. I’m not Jill. 4am requisite “WTF are we doing up at this hour?” pose.I’m at the back of the corral. Like the very end. I suddenly have to hop over the fence and do a little last minute pee. There went my dollar store gloves. I was laughing with these girls, who pulled out of their bras baby wipes. I had remembered my coach telling me about the necessity of these, but do I listen? (Do we not remember the Potomac River?) So, she gives me one to put in my pack, which oddly would come in VERY handy at mile 8. So, we are standing there, and I recognize Jeff Galloway, having been at the Expo the day before with Gina. So of course, like the truly star struck person I am, I get the pictures snapped and he looks at my garbage bag and says, “I’m sure envious of that bag right now.” (He glazes over as I explain my love of the Hanson Training Plan LOL)Actual Race Report right here:
Mile 1-3 I simply could not get in the groove. I was chilly and my stomach was a little fussy…but mostly I was weaving in and out of the TNTers who walk 6 abreast (really, TNT? We haven’t had this talk, like a million times before?) We are running in and around Disneyland. Back in the back, where workers have a smoke, and hey here’s our toilets, and there’s the cafeteria…and I was starting to get pissy about Tinkerbell…so much of the beginning reminded me of Rock N Roll marathons. Lotta money for a little reward because it’s such a big MACHINE.
We go in and out of the park, which was really cool…Main Street, Pirates of the Caribbean…places that reminded me of my babies (I actually nursed one of them at midnight standing in front of the castle). BUT. I was starting to get irritated for reals. We were WALKING through the Castle…by the Merry Go Round, and people were stopping to take pictures with characters. And I thought, well, you just have to do the best you can.
My plan had been to go at HMP for 7 miles, because I knew that 13.1 would be tough. I wasn’t trained, and as we know, I was only there to outrun some heartache. We were going around Anaheim, in and out of city streets, and by mile 4, I finally FINALLY got in a groove, where I knew I would be around 11:30…And I looked at my watch which had a low battery, so I never knew where I was.
At mile 8, my stomach SPOKE to me. Like, get off the course now. Lucky for me, I had wipes. Found a bush, got right back on the course. I have no shame about this. Thank God for the wipes, is all I have to say.
At mile 9, I lost Garmin power. I ran by the Hula girls, and started throwing the Shaka for my girl Row, for every camera that I happened to see. I was shocked that at Mile 9, I still hadn’t walked, even a little bit. There were Clif Shots at Mile 9, and for the first time, took a drink and nutrition. Perhaps I waited too long.
Mile 10-13.1, we went back through California Adventure, where I remember being with my boys when they were little. A million years and miles ago. Some bittersweet memories that collided with times gone by that were not so good.
Finally, I am just starting to enjoy Disneyland. Thinking, I would do the TINK again. The crowds were amazing. AND THEN. The medal. As big as my hand. And heavy. They hand us a dry bagel and a bottle of water. Full price for the bib, and I would NOT have been happy.
But, the MEDAL. I got that thing in my hand, and I forgot all pain. The smallish pop of my knee at Mile 7 that I tried to ignore…the lousy bagel, and the crowds, and the stupid walkers that rudely stood in my way. All in all, a 12:19 pace for a 2:45 and change race, for something I wasn’t trained for…not even a little bit.
The Medal. Seriously. I am in love. Tinkerbell, that lil angry cuss. She rocked my world.