No longer caring, I just let it rain. I walked away from the gym. It was my last long training run before the marathon. I stood outside my car, letting the water beat down on me. My earbuds continued to blast in my ears despite my negligence. I fumed with anger. Pain trickled down my cheeks. I don’t hate much, but I hate cancer. I hate it with every ounce of my being. I hate it for its destructiveness. I hate it for its brutality. I hate it for its mercilessness. I hate it for taking away the most important woman in my life. I was feeling incredibly conflicted with the big day approaching. Looking forward to flipping cancer the bird in my own special way, life threw a curveball. Superstorm Sandy had taken a lot from people. In the wake of its devastation it took the marathon too. Unfazed, it seemed only natural to complete the run anyway. Well acquainted with adversity, I learned from the best to make due with what I have. In the moment I knew this: I have legs and I came here to run.
I was expecting the weekend and the run in particular to be one of great sadness. Another loss. A paralyzing sensation of “what now?” What I got in return was a reminder that Love is a force like no other. One brother allowed the opportunity to spread the word of my mother, her story, and her strength all over the world. The other ran an outstanding 20 miles with me. My father joined in for the last few miles. “I’ll run the last 6 with you.” My heart swelled for him. He was not a runner and it seemed quite clear he had no idea what his offer meant. “I don’t want to leave you alone”, he says, eyes widened. I reassured him I would be ok. As I ran on ahead I knew the Truth: I’m not alone. Friends and family gathered on the sidelines cheering us on the entire way. We were all there for Mama Pearl. Showing her our strength in our Love for her and each other. We were adjusting our sails just like she taught us and we were doing it together.
What an honor it is to honor such a woman.
My sincerest thanks for the warmth and genuine positive support my family has received through this part of our journey.
With humbled gratitude,