#neverstop Healing

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Ginger's Story

By Ginger Cross

I can’t believe almost a year has past and in a few weeks I will be returning to Boston to run my second Boston Marathon and cross my first Boston Marathon finish line!

Last year I was one of many runners unable to finish the marathon due to the horrific events that unfolded. I was on Boylston street approaching the finish line when the explosions happened and was caught between the two blasts.

As you can imagine, it was a terrifying experience and one that changed my life. Over the past year returning to Boston has consumed much of my time and energy and I have had a roller coaster of emotions. But now with only a few weeks left I find myself getting more and more excited to finally complete this! I also can’t express how thankful I am! You don’t get many second chances in life and I feel so lucky to have this one.

I am grateful for the BAA for letting the runners who could not finish come back this year. I am thankful for yurbuds who humbled me by reaching out and offering a sponsorship because they realize no matter what level athlete you are or what your goals are it is important to never give up.  I am also so fortunate to have a wonderful husband and kids who have supported me and encouraged me during this time. And I am lucky to have to my circle of running friends online and in person who have been there to share this journey.

And of course I am nervous. Last year right after the marathon I did not want to go back. In addition to being very emotional I was only planning on running Boston once and felt despite everything that happened felt I had experienced “the Boston Marathon”.

People want to run the Boston Marathon for a reason and now I know why. It is truly amazing. The city of Boston, the BAA, all the neighboring towns, the fans, the energy. This is your crowning moment as a runner! For those few hours you are a rock star as people yell your name and cheer you on!

As great as it is though, it is A LOT of sacrifice physically, emotionally and financially to get there. I just didn’t think I wanted to or needed to go back.But then one day after I finished telling my marathon story to a friend they asked if I was going back to run again I told them “No”. My daughter, who was 11 at the time and was listening to my conversation, matter-of-factly interjected “But mom, you didn’t cross the finish line”.

I explained to her that I had just planned on running the Boston Marathon once and I had come close enough to the finish line. She simply looked at me and repeated “You didn’t finish”.

Those words resonated with me. I didn’t finish. What kind of example was I setting for my children? For myself? That it is ok to not finish something that you start because you don’t want to? Because you are scared? Because it is going to be hard? Because you are going to be tired and have to make sacrifices?

Right then and there I decided the example I wanted and needed to make was that if you have a goal, you do what it takes to get there. You don’t stop until you finish.

So, once again I laced up my shoes and began training. Normally the hard part of training for a marathon is my alarm going off at 4:30am, the endless hours of running and eating way too many GU’s! Although, that will never be easy, this year has been different.  This year, the hardest part has been feeling “unfinished”. It has been the long, drawn out anticipation of running the marathon again and managing the emotions that go along with it. I don’t know what it is going to be like being back on that starting line, surrounded by thousands of runners and fans, running down Boylston past the bomb sites where last year I was running for my life.

I do know the 118th Boston Marathon is going to be an epic, historic run and I am so grateful and excited to be a part of it. It is going to be a run of remembrance, a run of healing and a run of closure. However, until I cross that finish line on April 21, I just need to keep running.  #neverstop

Follow Ginger for more updates on her training. 

Follow yurbuds for more updates on the Boston Marathon. 

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