Monday, November 29, 2010

A Life Marathon V -- The Finish?

"I gotta feeling...that tonight's gonna be a good night!"  These are the words by Black Eye Peas I heard as I triumphantly jogged across the finish line.  I wish I could upload the video of the crossing (Yes, I had my iPhone in hand recording the whole thing!)  During the last 1/4 of a mile, with an excrutiating pain in my ankle and now heavy fatigue, I spoke into my now sweaty phone, huffing and puffing, and now jogging across the line.  I no longer cared that my time was...long.  I could have cared less that many runners (ummm, make that thousands of runners) finished before me.  I was enjoying the moment.  The crowd was roaring, clapping and celebrating every finisher's triumph. God gave me the chance to run...a marathon!  26.2 miles worth or concrete!  Only 1% of Americans have done this!  I need to go get my 26.2 car magnet.

Joe English, Copyright 2010.

Someone once told me that the marathon is just the end of a long training process.  I had never viewed it that way before.  I have some friends who began training for a race.  They weren't sure how they were going to do run without stopping.  Yet, I checked their Facebook page and saw their bright faces, full of gigantic smiles, in celebration of a huge feat accomplished...they finished their race...without stopping!  I was so proud of them!  My running partner finished his grueling race with class and perserverance...he finished!

My marathon showed me a couple things about life. 
  • I must continue to train daily to be a man of God.
  • I must always train to get better, smarter, stronger, and more humble to be the husband my wife needs me to be.
  • I have to continue to learn how to be a better dad to my boys.  I have never raised an eleven year old.  I have never dealt with a boy who has an older brother and still seeks his own attention.  Next year, I will have a new set of issues. 
  • Although I trained for a marathon and grew in my distance, I also have to continue to read and seek great advice from friends and family to do this right.  I've never done this before!

So here's the deal...I still running!  I'm still training.  I have many more pairs of shoes for husbands (let's call them Hon-E-Doos) to buy and many more shoes for dads (let's call these Dad-Can-eye's) to wear out.  Training can be good, but it can also be long and tiring.  So what do I (and you!) need to do?  Keep on running.  If you feel like you have finished your race, you may have deceived yourself!  Put on your shoes, and run!  You and I have No Off Season!