Sunday, January 17, 2010

Evolving Vision

Evolving vision for this blog, that is.  My last post was almost exactly a month ago . . . I am sorry it has been so long.  My hope when I returned to New Hampshire from San Diego over Christmas was that I would be able to get some additional contributers for this blog.  The original vision for this blog was to share our experiences and insights about running with the kids from our Children's Home.  However, I was the one with the bright idea, and I am 3,000 miles away from the daily St. Charles runs!  The sisters and volunteers who actually pound the pavement with the kids every day like the idea, but they are all busy people.  It is going to be harder to get posts out of them than I thought.
Next I thought about sharing my own journey of returning to running on this blog.  Lots of people start running and share their experiences with the community.  My story has a unique twist because it is about a return to running after fighting a major illness.  Right now, that journey is on temporary hold.  I am close to being ready to start training again, but my doctor does not agree that I am completely ready yet.  I need to make more progress in other parts of my recovery first (sigh).

Then it occurred to me that I should really write what is dear to my heart, which is our annual 5k race.  I am the coordinator of our race.  The first year I took over organizing the race was also the year I became sick.  The race has kept me going through many years of illness.  I could not participate in local road races any more with the other sisters & the kids, but I could put together an event for them & the whole local running community to enjoy.  Now that I am in school in California, coordinating the race from 3,000 miles away presents new challenges that keep me going.  It is exciting, though.  Our race has grown to 1,000 runners and I hope it grows more.  If any readers have thoughts about our 5k road race, please share them with me!


Anonymous said...

Dear Sister Mary Agnus,
I just stumbled upon your blog, and so happy to have done so. I love the story of Sister Maximillian's first running shoes, and the small steps "Anna" makes when she runs.
My heart felt very close to you when I read about your illness and inability to run, as I am sure you long to. I have been a runner for 25 years now...a slow runner...but a runner. I have had stress fractures that kept my both frustrated and depressed. But I know, when it is an illness, it's harder. Several years ago I had a major blood clot in my jugular, the doctor that discovered it was shocked I was alive as I sat there on the Emergency Room bed. I thought, "you have got to be kidding me"...he told me I needed imediate treatment and asked if I had family near. I told him I had a friend I could call, it was actually a friend, who I had known for a short while, we were supposed to go on our first date. All I could think about was "great, I finally meet someone really nice, and I have to cancel my date because I am in the stinkin ER". I called him and explained, with a great degree of embarrasment...without hesitation he dropped everything and came to my side. He stayed with me while nurses started IV, technicians wheeled me for ultrasounds,and registration admitted me. During that time he called everyone of my local family members. I remember the conversation started something like "Hi, you don't know me, but I am a friend of your daughters, and I am here with her at the ER..." He stayed with me from the afternoon until about midnight, when everyone had rushed to be with me. He met my entire family that night. All I could think of was how this whole ordeal was putting a big cramp in my plans. I knew I was not going to be running for a long time, and I was right. But little by little this guy helped me keep my perspective. I was so lucky to be alive! Running would always be there. He was right...eventually I was able to ease back to running...and although I had run 3 marathons before my illness...the last marathon I ran was the hardest and took me the longest. But I did it, and he was there, everywhere! Mile 3, mile 12, mile 21, and then the finish. That was 10 years ago, and that man is now my beloved husband. We have the most precious miracle, our 8 year old daughter,Maria. Because of my blood clotting condition I was told children were a very high risk for both myself and the child. I am so thankful for this beautiful miracle of ours, and while I have days where I really want to go for a short run, or a long run, I know in my heart that the running will be there when the time is right. I know my story may not make your journey easier, but maybe it will make you smile and know there are so many of us who understand.
I ran the Saint Charles race this past fall with my daughter and for many, many reasons it was the most special race I have ever run. Thank you for all you do to keep the race going, it is a blessing for many!
I will pray for you to be able to run soon.
Much love, M

Sister Mary Agnes said...

Dear M,

Thank you for sharing your beautiful story! You have given me a lot of encouragement not only personally, but also encouragement about our race and this new adventure of blogging that I have taken on. When I first decided I would write about not being able to run I struggled with that decision. But you have made me realize there are other people with similar stories... I hope they can find encouragement from what you have written here as well. Thank you again for sharing.

God Bless,
Sister Mary Agnes