Too true. While I never once felt like quitting during the race, there were times when all I could think was “Holy crap, is this over yet?” I was in rough shape when I finished. I sat near the med tent, pain shooting down my left shin, barely able to bed my knee, and an ice bag saran wrapped around it. I was hot, but I was cold. I felt like microwaved poo, just blah. That’s the only way I can describe it. I had nobody waiting for me when I crossed the finish line. My race buddies hadn’t finished yet, no family, no friends. Someone had handed me a medal and that was my pomp and circumstance. I was dead tired. But I had a smile on my face and a medal around my neck.
I view running a half marathon much like I do child birth. When you are in labor and delivering a baby, all you can think of is how awful it is and how you will never do it again. Then they hand you a perfect little bundle of baby, and it all melts away. This is why I’ve had four babies and I’m not done yet. This is also why I will run more half marathons. During the run, all you can think of is how awful it is and how you will never do it again. Then you cross the finish line, they hand you a perfect little shiny medal, and it all melts away.
I felt awful, I felt lonely. I hobbled over to grab my bag from bag check. I changed socks and shoes. I sat and snacked a bit. I hobbled back over to the massage tent. I brought my $20 with me with every intention of getting a massage after the race, and that I did. I stood in line and it was only about 5 minutes before someone had a table for me. This poor girl worked on my leg and IT band for over my scheduled 20 minutes. She felt bad, but she just couldn’t get the lower part to unlock, meaning my knee pain would persist. But it felt better. As I finished, Patty was finishing her race. We gathered her things and got in line for our bus to get back to the resort.
It only took ten or so minutes for us to get on the bus, but it felt like forever. I’m not sure what was going on, but I felt very over-stimulated. I didn’t want to chat, I didn’t want to be around people, I didn’t want to go and do. I wanted a shower and a bed. We had planned to go to a park after showering, but my mood didn’t allow for that. I showered, and had to drive over to a neighboring resort to pick up epsom salt that a local friend and fellow princess had picked up for me during a trip off property. When I got back to our resort, I immediately went to bed. I got a 2 hour nap and woke up feeling much better, and went to meet Patty at Epcot. When I got there I took a few pictures in front of the ball. The same ball that had tortured me so during the last mile and a half of the race.
I was still limping around pretty badly, and felt a bit in a funk. I did run in to the founders of PbRC and stopped to say hi, and got a picture with our fearless leader, Tony. I met Patty and we headed to the World Showcase, but I just wasn’t feeling it. I did feel it enough for a picture in England.
We headed out, as we had dinner at Ohana’s just a short bit later. That dinner was EXACTLY what I needed. We started our wait for seating at the bar, and Patty was kind enough to order a round of Lapu Lapus. Now I’m not a big drinker. I hadn’t had any kind of alcohol during the entire trip, or for months leading up to it for that matter. But this fruity drink is served in a whole pineapple, so I wasn’t going to turn it down.
Dinner itself was fabulous. Lots of meat on sticks, chicken, steak, shrimp and pork. Lots of delicious sides. The dumplings were mind blowing. I ate and ate and ate, and made lots of inappropriate jokes about the amount of meat. We had a great group of girls around the table, and it made for lots of laughter. It was a great way to end the day. While we had ideas of keeping the party going after dinner, they quickly fizzled and we ended up back at our resort. I’ve never welcomed the sight of a bed so much.