“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say,’Look for the helpers, you will always find people who are helping.’” — Fred Rogers
I know. There is good in this world. Yesterday’s horrific bombing in Boston is just another testament to the fact that humanity is in fact GOOD. The first responders, the runners, the innocent bystanders, that ran TOWARD the bombing area, who helped and comforted. They are GOOD. “The good outnumber you, and we always will.” –Patton Oswalt
I know this is what I should focus on, the way people show their goodness and bravery during horrible events, but right now, I’m just so angry. I may or may not have mentioned in the past few years that I’ve become a runner. And I may have also mentioned how becoming a part of the running community has changed my life, through camaraderie and support. This senseless act feels personal, maybe in the same way it feels personal to anyone who is a runner, or knows a runner, or lives in Boston, or is maybe just human.
Miles to go before I sleep. –Robert Frost
While running the Knoxville half a week ago, I was blown away by the support for those of us running shown by our community. The people cheering along the course and holding their signs is not only motivating, it’s humbling. To have someone yell, “You’re doing great! Keep going,” is just such an amazing feeling.
(Photo credit: katielann12 via Flickr)
And people who were cheering on runners yesterday in Boston, family members and strangers alike–and they were injured or killed by a bomb??? A child who was at the finish line cheering on runners and he…DIED??
Just yesterday morning while running with friends, we were talking about whether or not to run a marathon next year. We’re what you might call marathon-curious. We come from a place where we never thought we’d be able to run three miles, then never thought we’d run six miles, to running THREE half marathons in a year. A marathon? Yeah. Maybe. Maybe it is something we could do.
Our hesitation partly rests squarely on the shoulders of time and pain. Training for a marathon is no small thing, there are hours upon hours that would have to be devoted to logging miles. Time away from family, time away from other commitments in life, all to do something that hurts and is so, very hard. But it’s also so very rewarding.
Obviously the loss of life is by far the worst thing that happened as a result of this senseless tragedy. THE WORST, make no mistake. But what also makes me so angry, is that this marathon experience was totally ruined. They never got to cross the finish line. After all that work and time and pain.
None of this is fair. I’m angry. I feel helpless. I’m going to wear a race shirt today, as a show of support for the victims of the bombing and for the city of Boston, but let’s be honest–that’s not actually doing anything helpful.
I’m a runner, a human, a horrified observer. I want to do something meaningful, but I don’t even know what that is.