This time last year, I was stretching on my floor.

No, take that back.

I was stretched out on my floor. Foam roller kneeding the backs of my calves, straddling the line between pain and, well, more pain.

On June 13, 2010, I ran the Worcester Half Marathon. This was the race that defined Marathon B4 Mastectomy, and it was one of the most grueling physical, emotional, and spiritual journeys I have ever endured. Months of training, planning, walking then running, two different audiobooks, a dozen playlists, and blogposts marked the ultimate goal of knowing I had what it takes to torture honor my body.

Now, I wish someone would have told me that the Worcester Half Marathon was not for the faint of heart. I can still feel my stomach drop and my legs quiver at the hill that rivaled a Six Flags roller coaster. I feel the thin film of sweat and rain that eventually confused themselves on my pink Under Armour shirt. I remember the rush of the crowd at the starting line, the peace and solitude half way through, and the doubt, despair and fear as I neared Mile 9. It wasn’t easy.

But, nothing would be.

A year later, I have since run a 10k, another 1/2 marathon, said many hellos and goodbyes to friends, experienced the power of love and support, undergone a mastectomy, discovered strength and healing through physical exercise, and yes, started a doctoral program. I’ve connected with professors who have become friends, friends who have become my greatest teachers, and teachers who have demonstrated compassionate learning. Husband started a new job, oldest child started a new school, and for the first time in my life I bought a new car (thank you, Ford Windstar minivan recall).

It’s been quite a year.

I believe in looking ahead. Planning for the unplanned.

But, rather than make a resolution – an empty promise that I know I’ll break by the end of the day or week (e.g., giving up chocolate for Lent — yea, that lasted for like 2 seconds). Instead, I’m focusing on the gift you gave to me. The gift to act on these two questions:

“What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?

What would you do if, everyday, you felt loved?”

So, go for it, people. Comment, post, write, reflect.

Thank you for being on this journey with me. I felt loved every step of the way. I felt like I couldn’t fail — you built a safety net, held on tight, and let Me happen.

It’s been a year. But, I’m not looking ahead to another year. I’m living for today.

Peace, love and today,


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