On Sunday morning the alarm went off early. I put my feet on the floor and attempted to decipher if I should wear short or long sleeves in the 20-something degree air.
I was preparing for a first - my first 5K race.
Hubby suited up with me. "Don't run ahead of me!" I begged him. He promised to stay beside me, no matter how embarrasingly slow.
He saw me gathering my headphones and reminded me that headphones are against race rules. I told him he would have to sing to me, then.
We made our way to the caves, stretched (like I knew what I was doing) and took our place with the masses.
At the start, the mass began to stretch forward into a cave snake. We found our stride. I wanted to impress my husband on our first time to ever jog together, side by side. Not sure that 12-minute miles impress him, but who's timing?
He may as well have been strolling down a beach. He was the picture of ease, talking on and on, apparently see this as an opportunity to catch up with his wife who'd just returned from a business trip. I told him several times that I would not be talking back. But still he was effortless, a verbal stream of consciousness:
"What should we have for dinner tonight?"
"I'm hungry! Let's go somewhere for breakfast right after this!"
"Did I tell you about when we appraised these caves...?"
"Did I tell you about Kindermusik the other night...?"
"So I was talking to (so-and-so) and he said..."
Eventually I asked him to provide some motivation if he was going to chat the race away. Literally, he talked the.whole.time. He responded with his best effort: "Don't fade on me now!"
Um... or not.
And then, 37 minutes after I started, I finished. I crossed the finish line running, next to my man, hopefully making him proud. But also, making myself proud.