Tuesday, April 13, 2010

I Am Not A Runner

We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too.

I used to work at Space Center Houston as a teen teaching space camp and almost 3 times a week I'd be subjected to Kennedy's famous speech at Rice University declaring we would go to the moon.  It's a quote that resonates in my brain on a regular basis even today.  As many of my real life friends and long time readers know, I was diagnosed with avascular necrosis in my hip in 2003 and had a bone transplant from within my own body to rebuild my hip.  I've always known arthritis would set in someday.  I'd like to chalk up my recent constant ache in that hip to my training program for the Cap 10k, but the reality is, maybe that joint damage is catching up with me. 

The night before the race this year Darryl posed a question to me "maybe you're just not a runner."  At first I was insulted because who says that the night before a big race?  But he had a point.  I have a lot of things working against me.  I have asthma.  I have a bum hip.  I don't have a fibula in my left leg.  I have a lot of tissue and nerve damage from my surgery.  I'm not the most cardiovascularly fit person.  I'm just not designed to be a runner.  But that's okay, I'm going to do it anyways, because if it came easily to me, I don't think I'd want to do it.  I do things because they are hard.  Because I like the challenge. 

And maybe I'm the sorest person in Austin tonight (it took me a full month to recover last year) and maybe my goals are ridiculous given my condition, but someday, hopefully when I'm super old and can barely walk (please God let me be super old when that happens) I'll be able to look back and know that I made the most of my body while it was young and healthy.  Because once upon a time I had to wheel myself to class in a wheelchair.  After that, a 12:30 mile is about as big a deal to you personally as landing on the moon...

7 comments:

Emily @ Longley's in San Diego said...

This is very inspirational! Hopefully the pain is just from the training!!

Miss M! said...

What a good reminder... don't complain because you have to do it, but be glad that you can. It would serve us all to remember that! :)

Melizza said...

You totally made me tear up! Run on! You'll know if you have to quit or not.

Vic said...

What an amazing story! You're a warrior, lady. I also teared up.

Erin said...

I'm so sorry to hear you're in so much pain, but so totally impressed by your drive! Very inspirational- keep up the good work!

Jill said...

i'm so proud of you kelly! i tell myself i'm just not a runner all the time to give myself an excuse not to do it. you're an inspiration against that excuse.

also love that quote.

d.a.r. said...

Amazing. What an inspiration you are!