There comes a day, somewhere in this journey of grief, where the light starts to shine again. While the light is always shining right where you are, at some point it starts to widen to a few inches, then half a foot, then a foot. There comes this point where it illuminates a path in front of you, and instead of constantly looking back to what was, and what happened, what you’ve been through, you start to look forward again. Past the end of this day, and sometimes even to the day after tomorrow.
As that circle of light widens you realize that you are emerging from this an entirely different person, in all the ways you hope to be better. You understand that you have grown, you are wiser, more careful in ways that both protect you and leave you vulnerable.
We received incredibly good news surrounding the situation regarding my Dad’s passing. Due to the nature of these events I can’t be anything but extremely vague but I promise you this; there is a story to tell that I thought I knew, but didn’t know the depth of. Good, really good is coming out of it. If you know me at all you know that my deepest wish is that our lives serve a purpose and that after we are gone we can somehow say “I made it better for others”. This story has that ending. I was right all along, but I didn’t know how right. Stay tuned. The book is being written and there is a new chapter added.
I am actually working on the book. It’s funny because you don’t write a book from beginning to end as I am learning. You write where you are and you edit this thing together later on. The direction will take itself, and for now I just keep writing, like an artist keeps working on that painting.
Otherwise life has been…. stable. I have been racing locally, and have landed on the overall podium a few times and even snagged a little win. Our family celebrated 22 years of marriage, I got a new bike, and my sister and her family came to town. They live in another country so when they come I am all in. Gosh I love them.
And we got a new dog, a puppy named Finn. He’s incredible.
Most importantly through this last month I am seeing forward again.
Since my Dad died I haven’t been able to set the good solid goals and targets like I used to, however I have leaned into the beauty of movement and the process that all of this is, like never before. A month ago I learned I finally, after 8 years, got into a race called SOS: Survival of the Shawagunks (click the link for the details). It was this news that solidified my decision to postpone my next Ironman again, maybe forever. A race hasn’t ignited me like this in a long time. It’s one of the catalysts that has helped that light begin to shine forward. It’s an entirely new venture and style of racing for me and the location is absolutely amazing.
And as I said, I am starting to look forward again.
Athletically I have finally felt good enough to set some firm solid goals for 2024. In 2024 I have the privilege of turning 50 (I hope!). Age isn’t frightening to me, not something I dread, not something I resist. I am proud. I have some of my best athletic days ahead of me I am certain. But I also have some of my best days in all areas. I have some big ideas for things that I want to chase in the coming years creatively and professionally in addition to athletically. All around. I feel awake, out of the fog, and ready to really embark on this new chapter.
I am beyond grateful for the love and support that you have showered my family and I with these past 2 years. Especially through the process of seeking the truth regarding my Dad’s situation. It was not easy, the best way I can describe it, is gut wrenching. It won’t be bringing closure, there is no closure when it comes to grief. Please don’t insult anyone by ever even suggesting that. Period.
When I say THANK YOU, please understand how much I mean it. I mean it from the very deepest part of my heart and soul. It’s through your love and support that I have been able to become a better person, better friend, better everything. When you give love into the world, trust me it’s like a boomerang. It comes back to you tenfold. You showed me that.
The light feels good. I have the strength to look forward without abandoning or diminishing the past. It took a long time. It took a painful amount of work. What it comes down to is a saying that Dad used to say to me as often as I needed to hear it.
“All we ever really have to do in this life is put one foot in front of the other. If we do that enough times, eventually we will get somewhere.”
Thank you for holding me up and holding me close. I know that you know, that we are here to do the same for you.