A couple months ago Zak told me she was working on a blog post about running partners...she never finished it because at some point in the story the chaos of life snuck in like winter snow - soft and quiet - but changing our lives and running as we knew it. Zak had hernia surgery. Raechele hurt her knee. Brian injured his shin. My brother bruised the bone in his foot. The running group was falling apart and we tried hard to keep the bond of our marathon dream together. Three weeks before the race our lives became more white with the falling chaos of 'snow' - a horrendous stomach bug hit family circles, a viral cold attacked, and a sore ITB band threatened our dream.

When doubt and fear jeopardized my 5 hour goal- Zak vowed that she had enough 'heart' for the both of us.  After weeks of prescription anti-inflammatories, cortisone steroids & numerous visits to my physical therapist -- Eric guru Dullmeyer  -- my goal became to FINISH.  Days before the marathon Zak visited an emergency clinic with a virus that left her bed ridden for 2 days... at 4 o’clock before race day she made the decision to pack her bags & head to the hotel to prepare for the marathon.

Race day began with 5 of us at the start line - armored with prayers to fulfill our goals.

Zak and I pulled each other through - a delicate strand held our hearts and therefore bodies together.  I cried, laughed, sang and prayed my way through the miles....Zak at my side.  The pain in my knee began as early as mile 2, Zak wanted to curl up and sleep at mile 3...and when we looked at one other we silently pledged to hold each others goal delicately in hand.

As we ran, we looked around at the spirit of the marathon...many battles were fought and won that day.  You could see victory in the struggle.  Thousands of shirts honoring fallen souls, thousands of runners running for a cause, thousands running for 'life'

The pleasure of pain. The pleasure to run... or walk... or crawl.

Here are a few of the goals that were reached on that marathon day...

  • Matt qualified for the Boston Marathon with an inspiring 3:19 finish time!
  • Sonya reached her goal of 5 hours for an awesome first marathon!
  • Craig fulfilled his pledge to raise funds in honor of Monica, Rogan & Milla DeBeer.
  • Zak and I epitomized 2 hearts beating as one.

So this is where Zak's story about running partners is written and finished, by me.  Coming full circle, the spirit of the team...the spirit of the marathon.