Thursday, January 20, 2011

December 17, 2010 - Thank you Santa!!!

Santa brought my gift early this year.
  Thanks to the unbelievable kindness, generosity, and thoughtfulness of a "stranger", the never-ending love, generosity and support from my parents, and the overwhelming, perfect  love and support from my husband, I am getting to run in the Walt Disney World Marathon in  just over three weeks!!
I still can't even believe it is really happening, and I have been really teary-eyed about it the last couple of days. I couldn't even blog about it, because I just had to let it all sink in for a couple of days.
Here is what happened...
An incredibly kind and thoughtful person that reads this blog but has never met us in person contacted Josh on Tuesday and told him that she knew that running the Disney Marathon was a dream of mine, and that her and her husband had Disney Vacation Club points that they wanted to give to us so that I could stay for free at Disney over the marathon long weekend, so I could run in the race.
When Josh and I were deciding on a marathon to do together I really, really, REALLY wanted to do the Disney one, but it was just too expensive for the travel, airfare, etc. I have loved all things Disney for as long as I can remember and when I first started thinking about running a marathon I said lots of times, "If I ever run a marathon, I want it to be Disney!" ButVegas was closer to home, cheaper travel and accomodations,  and just seemed more realistic (and also seemed like it would be a great race, which it was).
Josh forwarded me the email that he had gotten and basically said that he didn't know if we could make it work, but that something incredible and generous was being offered and that he would feel awful if he didn't let me know about it. He came home for lunch and we talked about it. My first thoughts were that as much as I wanted to, there was no way. We couldn't afford another plane ticket, it is hard for me to leave for any period of time, Josh had to stay because he would be coaching track by then, etc. etc. etc.
I asked Josh what he thought and he said, "There is really just one phone call you need to make. Call Pam."
So I forwarded the email on to my Dad and Pam, and let them know that I had no expectations and knew it probably wasn't practical, and that I knew I could do it another year, but that Josh thought it was too generous of an offer to just turn down without looking into it.
Just like my Dad and Pam, within a couple of hours, they were on the phone saying, "Let's go!"
I talked to Josh one more time to make sure he was truly ok with it. His love and support and encouragement are so bottomless and unconditional that I really can't even put into words how much I love him.
I called Dad and Pam back and asked if they thought if it was selfish of me to go... to use someone's vacation club points, to have Dad and Pam buy me a plane ticket, to be away from the family for a long weekend... I worry a great deal about doing anything selfish and don't feel comfortable putting myself above Josh and the kids. They agreed with Josh that it was a great opportunity and thought I should do it.
So, I am leaving on Friday, January 7, running on the 9th and home on the 10th. Dad and Pam are going to meet me in Florida and be there to cheer me on again. Josh is going to stay home with the kids. I am still waffling on whether or not to take Noah... it will be a long flight (five hours both ways, plus the three hour drive), we are sharing one hotel room, there are no strollers allowed at the expo we have to go to on Saturday, and I have to get up at 2am and be out the door by 3am on Sunday morning, which with the time change is midnight for Noah and I. If we can find someone that is willing to hang out with him on Monday morning so Josh can get a few hours in at work, I am thinking leaving him home would be much, much easier on him. But if I have to bring him we will be fine. :)
I SO wish I could bring all of the kids, but even if the expense wasn't a huge obstacle, the parks are going to be insanely crowded (over 50,000 runners are competing in events at Disney World that weekend) so it wouldn't be a smart week to take our family anyway. I do really wish that Josh could be there with me, but he wouldn't be able to run (the shorter races are sold out and he isn't trained to run a marathon), he has to coach, and we didn't want to leave the kids again. I am so grateful he is so supportive and willing to let me go.
So yeah... after it was all worked out and it has "settled in" a little... I am CRAZY excited. This is one of the best gifts I have ever been given.
Seriously??? I am getting to run the Disney World marathon!!!! (And I am getting to see my Dad and Pam twice in two months!)
I am going to do a long run this weekend (20 miles) and then follow the three week taper again until the race. My body feels good and I know I am ready to do this again.
I found out that the marathon sold out this morning, so we just, just made it. I can't believe it all came together so quickly and smoothly.
I am just so touched that someone I have never met would have thought of me in this way, and by the love and support of my parents and Josh. I am so very blessed (and grateful).
Merry Christmas! :)

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