Yesterday I ran a personal worst in the Oral Cancer Foundation’s Run for Awareness, a local cause with tremendous community backing after the loss of a neighbor, Jeremy Blevins, to this disease (good local paper write-up on the event here). That’s right, a 50:58 and maybe my favorite 5k I have ever run. I ran it with my 4 year old Charlie. We chatted. We sprinted. Sometimes we ran backwards. Often we ran to make circles. We stopped to look at small bugs on the road. Twice Charlie said: “Dad, can we take a rest?” and rather than walk it out we sat on the curb and watched runners run by us. I have never considered sitting down on a run to rest but it was actually quite nice. I’m pretty sure I could have run the race faster but not sure I could have enjoyed it any more.
There are 3 things I made note of at this event:
1) I didn’t know Jeremy Blevins, but I can tell you he had an amazing family and circle of friends who are closer after losing him to this awful cancer. There is a light that they have…hard not to think what makes it shine.
2) This community (who have logged over 35,000 running miles in the past year in support and memoriam) cares deeply about each other. Everyone probably thinks their community is pretty great – ours takes the cake.
3) This family is positively impacting lives in his memory: nearly $30k raised at a first annual 5k. People running for the first time because of him. Awareness raised through free screenings. People caring about people.
Life can be pretty fantastic if you slow to see it every now and again.