Sunday, May 18, 2014

It's Like Going Home...

The saying goes "Home is where the Heart Is."
  That can apply to many areas of life, honestly. But if one believes that saying, then I am going home.... 
  Allow me to explain, and please be patient with my story.

If you follow my blogs often, you know I love to run. I am passionate about it. I enjoy it and it is a big part of my life. Mind you, it does not consume me, but running can be found to be the center of my conversation on many days.
  At times, the discussion is about a race I've finished. Other moments, the conversation is about my morning run that day, or the latest running challenge I am working to overcome. Sometimes, the conversation is all about the other person and how I can encourage them in their journey of running. I have had thousands...literally countless....discussions about running. I honestly don't get tired of talking about it.
   My running journey began in 2008, as I sat at the finish line of the United States Air Force Marathon in my hometown of Dayton, OH. I was a volunteer (with Starbucks at the time-yes, my love of coffee and running have always kind of gone hand in hand) in the general's tent, but in between what we had to do, I was lucky enough to sit and enjoy watching all the people finish. I saw countless runners/walkers cross the line that day in 2008. I saw well overweight people finish; I saw 80+ years old finish. I witnessed people hand in hand, crossing and crying. I sat next to some runners vomiting (we also were located near the medical tent).  That day is the day I decided I, too,  would become a runner, or at least attempt it. In seeing those finishers, I fell in love with something I never imagined would exist in my life: Running.
   That next week I began training. Meanwhile, the USAF Marathon staff, who were frequently in my Starbucks store, became friends, and also encouraged me in my running journey. That was September 2008.  I have been a runner since then. My first race was May 2009, the Flying Pig Half Marathon. I have run the USAF half marathon twice and it was at that race I once got my half marathon PR. I have never looked back from that moment or been sorry for finding a new passion.
  Running has brought all kinds of new friends in my life. Some of them for a season, others come and go, and still others have become life long buddies.
   Running helped get me through grief of losing mom and gave me a purpose, by the development of the Linda A. Ferguson Memorial 5K. I took my passion and allowed that to fuel the emotions that burned deep inside me. What was just something I enjoyed alone  has become an event that in essence, helps others, and has given purpose to my pain.
    And now Running is about to become a career for me in a sense. It's like going home.... I will be going to work for the Air Force Marathon. The event, the place, and the first-time fueler of a now passion of mine is now offering me a place to make this passion a career.  Beginning in June, I will be working for the Marathon office. In a sense, I am going home.... the sequence of events that have led to this being able to take place has been an unfolding of faith and an exciting story to see come into reality. In essence, I am launching into a dream job. And I cannot contain the excitement I feel for this.
  Coffee has served me well for the 7 years I have been in the business of it, and in the next couple of weeks there will be a flow of stories about all I've learned and encountered and seen in my years in that industry.
  But I am excited to share that soon I'll be beginning a new journey with the Marathon office and this path is one that feels like going home....
Air Force Half Marathon 2010

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