Wednesday, January 30, 2013

grab a hand

We had just passed mile 24 when she hit it.  Her steps faltered and veered toward the curb.  My running partner had slammed right into the dreaded runners’ wall.  Now she ran with her eyes closed, barely putting one foot in front of the other.  Mustering my remaining energy and strength I grabbed her hand and started talking, loudly and nonstop. 

Looking straight ahead I saw a tall building, one entire wall covered with an enormous picture advertising the re-release of the movie E.T.  I jabbered on about how I saw E.T. in the theater when it first came out, the theater so packed that people were sitting on the floor between the aisles.  I told silly stories about my one year old son.  Words poured out of me as my hand held hers and our feet covered the last 2.2 miles of our marathon journey.

We crossed the finish line together, clasped hands raised, big smiles on our faces. 

For eight months, my partner and I had run together four days a week.  There were countless days when her quiet knock on my front door was the only thing that wrenched me from my bed for those 5:30a.m. training runs.  I know that I could not have covered those 26.2 miles that day in March 2001 without her.

In every area of my life, my chances of succeeding and meeting my goals are drastically improved if I don’t try to go it alone. 

In my life of faith, I meet regularly with women who are mentors and friends.  We ask each other the hard questions, laugh heartily together and help carry one another’s burdens when life gets tough. 

As a homeschooling mom, a group of us who are educating our children at home gather together monthly.  We celebrate successes in our journeys, share resources and help each other over the bumps on the road.

In my desire to stay fit and active, I am a member of a gym where the other crazy people there at 5:30a.m. members I see regularly help encourage me to keep at it, even when it feels difficult or I don’t see the progress I would like.

Some days, being faithful with my writing feels just as hard as getting outside with my running shoes on and pounding the pavement.  My steps can start to veer toward the curb; I just want to sit down already!  So I am profoundly grateful for my God-Sized Dream sisters who, through their encouragement, inspiration, and the fact they keep showing up, take my hand and pull me along toward this God-Sized Dream in my heart.

Linking up at Holley's place today!

Whose hand do you need to grab a hold of today?


  1. A lovely and well-written post, Amy! I can particularly relate to the running story. I have run half marathons the past two years. (The full seems a bit out of reach just yet, though!) So blessed to be one of your God-sized dreams sisters.

    1. I am not currently running long distances (my almost-40 body keeps getting injured!), but I am loving weight lifting and spinning since they make me feel good and they don't hurt :). I think half-marathons are the perfect length and if I were running longer distances, I would shoot for that. Do you follow a specific training regimen?

    2. When I trained for the half, I started around now, with 2 to 3 miles runs at first, going up to 10 miles, and running three times a week. My husband pulled the plan from his Hal Higdon marathon training book. I was never great at always getting in the cross training or weight days, but I pretty much never missed any of the runs!

  2. Loved this Amy! I too wrote about the importance of community... in regards to fitness - but also to Dreaming these God Sized Dreams of ours! Congrats on the the marathon... such a huge accomplishment! In my process of weight loss I took up running and had set my sight on a 1/2 marathon before several injuries sidelined me! This just may get me back out there! Thanks!

    1. Karilee, thanks for visiting! I know what you are saying about injuries...they are precisely why I have switched to other forms of exercise, but I so wish I could run longer distances!

  3. While I can't relate to the actual running (I've never run anywhere except in a store right before it closed - ha!), I could totally relate to that feeling of needing someone in the last 2.2 miles of the journey....or of being someone else's support. You described it beautifully. Loved this post! : )

  4. I have always wondered what it would be like to run a marathon. Congrats on completing it but more congrats to being that encourager that helped your friend made the winners mark also. We all need that person to help us win our race.

  5. Dear Amy,

    Thank you so much for your kind and encouraging words on my Friday post on "Afraid." I deeply appreciated your words.

    And yes, community is so vital, and I am happy to read God has provided you with a great group of friends.

    Blessings to you,