Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Race of triumph

The Nike Human Race 10K – Los Angeles 8.31.08

I was high on “E” but it was the good kind—Endorphins! My addiction began after my annual physical and my doctor prescribed running 6 miles a week to keep my cholesterol at bay. Being of Filipino descent I’m predisposed to high cholesterol despite my dauntless efforts at eating healthy. Thanks, Mom and Dad!

2008 was supposed to be “great”; instead it was filled with four consecutive deaths and then, my divorce. I felt like the entire US Army took turns in pummeling me. I’d get beat down, shake myself, and rise up. In defiance to the supernatural force buffeting me against the rocks I challenged myself: train for a race, any race, endure physical, emotional, and mental pain then reclaim my dignity. Living with a husband who had no desire for me, my dignity was nowhere to be found like a naughty child playing an unsolicited game of hide-and-seek. Regardless of the repeated declarations confirming my beauty, it rang untrue when my spouse’s blank eyes gazed at me. Disenchantment in a marriage gone sour was the knockout punch that slammed the truth into my face. My beauty was placed in careless hands and there was no one to blame but myself.

It’s been one month since that pivotal race and I’ve emerged from the chrysalis of shame and failure. I can genuinely smile and experience the panoply of emotions on the opposite end of the pain spectrum. Running that race enabled me to pound my doubts and fears, humiliation and disgrace into every crack and crevice on the Los Angeles pavement. Finally, I was running toward triumph instead of running away from my beast of burden.

The days of flying solo have begun and my massive wingspan is taking me to heights I never knew existed. Each new day brings a fresh revelation of my purpose and who I am meant to be. Despite the beautiful brokenness of who I was, I’m learning to be content with the woman I am.