Today we’re in the 24th location, Memphis Tennessee, on the journey of Running Hope Through America. We’re at the largest urban park development in the US, Agri-Center International.
It took 14 states to get into a rhythm and by the 20th state, in Louisiana, I thought I was in great shape. All my aches and pains went away, and it was a significant milestone that my family, team and I celebrated. I guess I was wrong…
Over the weekend I got hit with fatigue, pain – both emotional and physical. Now I have to dig deep into the well of my personal process that I thought had dried up a while ago, thinking I had everything figured out. So, I have to ask myself, “What else is there for me to learn?”
Sister Mary Beth says that this journey, for me, is like the last year of a nun’s novitiate. She says that it’s this year that tests you the most, and the year that shows how attached you are to your ego. “Ego? I don’t have any ego about this,” I said. But after thinking about it, I know she’s right…
People come out for a day, maybe they’re marathon runners that have done 20 or 30 miles, and they are so excited that they get to do their first 50-mile run with me.
My feet are killing me, the balls of my feet especially, my legs, and my hips. With people around I feel like I have to perform – I’m a professional athlete after all. If you’re up ahead of me, I have to keep up with you, if you’re behind me I need to stay behind. I want people beside me when if we’re running together. And, I don’t want them to see the pain that I’m feeling inside.
Someone said, “50 miles? How hard can it be?” People forget, this is not a 50-mile run, this is a 2500-mile run broken down into 50-mile segments. They also forget that I’m doing this almost every day. They get to go home, relax, watch a movie, be with their families and recover the next day. I miss my children a lot, and after a hard twelve-hour day of running when I need them most, I get to try and relax in a bumpy, uncomfortable RV without them.
So, because of all of this I need to be left alone… just for today. I know that I have to take this breath by breath, one foot in front of the other… just keep moving forward, with Love.
My friends from Trinity Cross, Brian and Coleen Rossi, came out to Dallas on Sunday. What a day that was! When he showed up in his wheelchair and reached out to put his arms around me for a hug he said, “I can feel your pain”. I said, “Brian, my legs hurt.” He said, “Mine do too.”
This 13 year-old kid has been through so much more than most adults, he really does understand. He says, “I don’t know why God chose me for this, but he did; and to do this Run, he chose you.”
So many children and people in the world are suffering, and they do it with dignity and grace. I feel like I’m not doing that well today, or yesterday. I’m not suffering with grace, I feel tortured. But, Sister Mary Beth is the divine force behind our effort. She’s amazing, and I’m so lucky to have her by my side. I truly don’t know what I would do if she wasn’t here.
Our goal is a great one, $1,000,000 to save lives, feed children and make their lives better! I am most certainly grateful that people show up to run, it makes our effort come alive! But, PLEASE lovely supporters… remember this is a fundraiser! If you show up, please give something for the cause.
And… for the record: I never realized it was going to be this hard.
My orthopedist says that I can’t run today, or tomorrow… so I’m walking and jogging a little.
Thank you to all the people that support RHTA, please come and joint the race one day in your city if you can. Give what you can and show your support, help us to achieve a goal that will change the lives of thousands.