I’m not a runner, no matter how much I want to be. Still, I watched, sickened and stunned, with the rest of the nation as details came trickling out about the blasts at the Boston Marathon.
What the hell is wrong with people?
Those were the initial questions running through my mind. Then I started obsessing about how terrible it would be to train for months, finish a marathon and then have an explosion rip through your euphoria. I can’t even imagine starting the race healthy and ending it an amputee.
Before work, I was glued to my twitter stream, reading each new update. (No writing got done at Starbucks, that’s for sure.) Since I work at a newspaper, we had the TV tuned to CNN and I had access to the news wire services. Looking through the photos of the explosions’ aftermath to choose ones to run in the paper turned my stomach. So many injured … patients with bloodied limbs and faces … Much too graphic for our newspaper.
Even as I was getting ready to leave the office for the night — at nearly 1 a.m., the AP was still busy updating the story. I’m sure new info will come to light as I’m sleeping.
One comment I read in more than one of the stories on the wire was something to the effect of “there was no indication a threat was imminent.” It stuck with me, along with another observation that the attack appeared to have been timed for maximum casualties, because the 4-hour mark is when a lot of recreational runners finish the race.
Again, I ask: What the hell is wrong with people? Who thinks that way? What purpose does an attack like this serve?
I suppose since it’s a terrorist attack — foreign or domestic was still unclear — the goal is to steal our innocence, make us feel less secure, take away our joy.
Sadly, it worked. People all over the country — runners or not — are feeling the effects of what happened. Any runner who achieved a PR won’t be able to think of it with the same pleasure they’d have at another race.
It even robbed me of the victory I saw on the scale Monday morning: Down 3+ pounds, thanks to WW Simply Filling technique. I should have been floating on a rosy-tinted haze of success; instead I plodded through the day with a leaden heart.
It also made me want to dive head-first into a vat of French fries, followed by a bag of M&Ms. I’m a stress-eater, and I eat for comfort. This I know. For weeks after the September 11 attacks, I took solace in cheesy casseroles and sweet treats.
The difference is, this time I didn’t indulge — much anyway. When I finally got around to eating my dinner (at nearly midnight, after all the pages were finished), I enjoyed a serving of Lindsay’s Crock Pot Enchilada Casserole. I also had a side of brown rice topped with salsa and avocado. Yum on both counts!
Then, after work, I weighed out 3/4 ounce of M&Ms.
That’s right: Instead of eating the whole bag, I only had a few. I’m not going to let them … whoever they are … win.
Amanda at Run to the Finish has written a much more eloquent post on choosing your feelings rather than unconsciously reacting.
So today choose to be more patient, more kind, more caring, loving to yourself, give more hugs, share your loving thoughts, connect with friends, call loved ones, hold a door, make the world more joyful and send your love to every runner around the world that is now afraid, to those in Boston and to those who were on site.