I had been planning on starting this blog on a positive note. I wanted to talk about how excited I was for this outdoor season. About how after years of disappointment I am finally in a place mentally and physically where I would be able to play the game. How excited I am to take a serious shot at making the Olympic Trials, to qualify for the final, and race with my sister on June 29th under the lights at Hayward Field. I am still excited about the next 100 (plus or minus a few) days, but all I can think about is my sister.
While I was out rocking my workout earlier this week, my sister was laying on a table having a MRI. Even though I didn't need to hear it, because the silence on the other end of the phone was enough to confirm what I knew; my heart broke for her when she finally managed to say "stress fracture" through her tears. After seeing how hard she had worked the past two years, to come back from injury after injury after injury, and have her hopes and dreams crumble again is heartbreaking. I've never had a stress fracture (knock on wood) but, seeing the physical, emotional, and mental pain my sister has gone through makes me sick to my stomach; and when I went to pick her up at the airport today I was prepared for the worst. The person that came down the escalator, however, inspired me more than she realizes.
I know that her heart is broken and her soul is crushed more than she will admit to almost anyone. You can see her eyes get glassy and her shoulders sag in conversations revolving around NCAAs, PAC-12s, the Olympic Trails, summer racing in Europe, and even just being able to go for a run. After the number of injuries she's had, no one would blame her if she decided to hang up her track spikes and never jump a water pit again. Her ability to say "Yeah this sucks, but I'll be back. I'll be healthy and fit eventually and my goals will become a reality" has inspired me to be as resilient and determined as she is. Time and again she continues to fight back instead of taking the cards she's dealt. I know it wasn't easy for her but she came out to watch me do water pit work and gave my athletes some pointers on their technique. It would have been easier to stay in the car or at home, but she went anyway. Her ability to support those around her, even when she's on the verge of falling apart, shows what a strong and committed person she is. I hope that one day her resilience and persistence pays off and everything clicks; and I know it will because she believes it so deeply.
I have been so excited to step on the the track in Eugene in June, do a few strides, hurdle a few barriers, step on the line with my sister, and chase our dreams of Olympic glory together. As of now that part of my dream seems very unlikely, but the past few hours I've spent with Mel Lawrence has inspired and motivated me, far beyond what I thought I was capable of, to ensure I do everything in my power to guarantee I am on that track in June chasing the dream, even if we aren't on the starting line together.