Happy St. Patricks Day my lovely readers! I’m sure most of you are up bright and early today for training and/or RACES! It’s supposed to be heavenly weather here in DC for the SunTrust DC Rock n’ Roll Marathon.

While I’m signed up for the whole marathon, I defaulted to the half a couple of months ago after back issues caused my training to be pushed to the wayside. It was hard to accept at first — being as I feel so close to that sub-4. But, later this year after I train like a pro, I’ll be glad. So they say — good things come to those who wait. Or…

Oh, you know I’ll be doing that. I think most people don’t give themselves enough credit. Most people can do way  more than they think they ever could. It’s about getting over the hard — the really hard — and then seeing that you can. And then you can again — and again — and again. If people would just realize this, they’d grow and learn so much!

I’m sad today because I found out a friend from high school died on Thursday — most likely from a drug overdose. We weren’t close friends but it’s always a shock to find out someone died so young. The thing was, he had recently been kind of re-introduced into my life because he began running with Back on My Feet in Indianapolis, where my sister Lindsey works.

He was a veteran and struggling with substance abuse. I always remember him as a really nice guy and was shocked to learn of his death. It made me so sad to know it came from using drugs — something he was clearly trying to overcome. What if he had known that he could do it? What if he had known that the really hard would eventually subside if would just push through?

At our BOMF team meeting this morning, several resident members shared how the program has helped change their lives. One of our members — a guy who is always happy, energetic and raring to go in the mornings — said, “This isn’t always the way I was…you wouldn’t even know who I was before.” Another person was ecstatic to announce she was 10 months clean and sober today. Several others spoke of how BOMF had become family to them — a core part of staying clean.

And you wonder why I am so enthusiastic about this program? You better believe that hugs from people that care matter. If you are a 50-year-old guy in a rehab program for the third time with family members who’ve deserted you — those hugs matter. Crossing the finish line of an 8k for the first time matters. Somebody asking how your life is going and giving you encouragement no matter what may be happening matters.

Not everyone makes it though. In fact, most people don’t. And I have a feeling my heart is going to break when that happens. Dewayne didn’t make it. But all I can is keep going back, keep loving people, praying for them and knowing that the imperfections and heartaches of this world are only temporary.

My heart felt especially heavy today passing the homeless people begging on the street, thinking about the kids unfairly born in Congo, seeing the quadrapalegic maneuver his way onto the metro. Sometimes it seems like there’s just not enough love to cover it all. I can only do what I can and know that God will handle the rest.

And on that note, I’m off to run this race with some amazing people on my mind. Dedicating a mile to each person may be just the key and I think I’ll do just that. Rest in peace, Dewayne.

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