I’m an unapologetic crier. I’ve said this before. So, in heading back to Boston to get some closure after last year’s tragic events, I knew tears would be included; however, triggers from something traumatic are strange: You don’t know they are going to be triggers until you start crying, and I’m talking crying out of nowhere.
I cried when we ascended from the T subway and walked toward the finish line, literally moments after arriving in Boston on the Saturday before the race. Plus, my heart rate shot up which threw me for a loop. PTSD is a real thing. I can’t imagine what soldiers must go through on a daily basis. The finish line area was packed with people taking photos the whole weekend which was nice to see.
I cried when Boston by Augustana came on my playlist. Also, It’s Time by Imagine Dragons and Homecoming King by Guster…these songs will always make me cry now, and that’s ok.
I cried during my shakeout run when passing the church which ended up being the makeshift meeting place for catching up with my wife after the bombings last year.
I cried at Easter mass then the priest (who was awesome) asked Boston Marathon runners to stand up. He said a prayer for the runners and the congregation gave all of us a long round of applause. Tears.
I cried while in line for the Porto-John in the Athlete’s Village during the moment of silence for last year’s victims…thousands of people in Hopkinton, and you could hear a pin drop. This makes me cry as I type this (true).
I cried just before the Start during the National Anthem and Flyover. National pride and remembrance were collectively swelling in Hopkinton, and throughout the race route. The crowd support was indescribable. I will never forget the collective spirit of the day.
I cried during the race when I saw a sign that said: “Thank you for coming back!” and, yes I laughed when I saw a sign that said “No Time for Walken” complete with a photo of the quirky actor. I needed that laugh.
I cried when I saw my brother, who surprised me with his visit, near the Newton Fire Station (Mile 17ish). I hugged him, and I warned him that my hamstring was shot and not to worry…I’d just be running the rest of the race slower. I had one working hamstring, but I still had two legs. I was reminded this as I passed a runner with a prosthetic leg. I briefly wondered to myself if that was one of the bombing victims or perhaps a soldier.
And, yes, I cried the whole way down Boylston Street (I always do), and I mean a full on blubbering cry this time. Ahead of time, I planned to run straight down the middle of Boylston Street to take it all in (and I thought I’d feel safer in that space); however, I impulsively went all the way to the left side of the street (the side of the bombings). I turned to the crowd, put my hand on my heart as I passed the two bombing sites, reflected and remembered. I thought of Martin Richard, who will never turn nine years old. Then, I headed to the finish line because that is always the goal: to finish
Yes, extra hydration was required Boston Marathon weekend.
Down one hamstring at Mile 17