Monday, December 17, 2012

2012 Review - Highlights

1. Raquel Mares, born 8/12/12, weighing 8 lbs. 12 oz.
My niece was born.  The kid cries and I think its the cutest thing ever.  She does not shriek like the boys did when they were babies; just won me over the moment I laid eyes on her.

2. Returning to Law School
With the help of friends, especially Sam, I got my priorities straight and worked hard to get back into the mix.  When I left law school it was amidst economic and personal crisis.  I was very lost; I felt and like an empty shell.  I was lucky enough to recognize true friendships who helped fill that empty shell with positivity and helped me re-discover the things I missed.  I am lucky that those crisis only ended up costing me money so no real permanent damage. I am forever thankful for that.
3. 2+ hour 50 Mile PR.  Rock'n River 50_11:37 & at American River 50_9:31
I had a great support system leading up to this race.  I was super excited that my training went well.  The night before I was still hoping for a 10:59:59 finish to qualify for the Western States 100.  I did not realize how well the day had gone until 5 miles before the end when my not-planned-4-pacer Chris was hooting and hollering that a sub 11 was in the bag. Report Link.   

4. Headlands 100 in 32:52:14, 9 minutes ahead of the final cut off.
This one hurt, Race Report.  My first 100 hurt, but this one was a different level.  It stung more because it was supposed to be a family affair.  Two family members were supposed to pace me through this one dropped out a few weeks before the race.  I had no pacers and no crew.  But, guy upstairs was looking out, I met Victor of Victory Sport Design, who hooked it up with drop bags and paced me from mile 50-75 through what was probably one of the coldest most painful nights of my life.  Then Roberto and Kristen drove from Davis to crew and pace; Lucille and Huan, who had helped a friend move up north joined as well.  I ended up having more than enough crew and pacers…and was able to just squeak in 9 minutes to spare.  

5. Have faith, God has a plan.  
I have given an honest effort to become the best person I think I can be.  I smile now instead of smirking.  I have a great relationship with my family.  I have not been able to say it for over a decade...but I am really happy with where my life is.  I have met a plethora different people from all walks of life that just like me want to be better, and leave this planet a little nicer than they found it.  So I will keep working hard and hope that what I do motivates others to pay it forward.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Connecticut Tragedy

I am preparing for the last final of this semester on Monday (Contracts); got a great run in yesterday.  I ran 8:14 avg for over nine miles which I had never done before.  I have been feeling stronger, but am having a hip movement issue.  My leg muscles are just tight and are causing lower back pain.  I went to the chiropractor and had the legs stretched out to try and get motion back into the hip.  The pain is tolerable, but it does concern me a little because of the heavy miles planned for the break and leading up the the AR50.  But all I can think about are the families in Connecticut.

In addition to this blog I write in a Moleskine; been doing it for years.  My Moleskines, many of them destroyed, see the inner part of me.  They record the part of me that is callous and ruthless but at the same time the part of me that is weak and scared.  Most of my private and not as politically correct thoughts go to there rather than this public forum.  But, this one is different.  I cried today for no reason other than thinking "what if it were my nephews (PEM just started Kindergarten); what if I were a parent?"  I consider myself a pretty tough guy, but kids just have a way of getting to you.  

They may be rascals and break things and throw tantrums but they are innocent.  They have life to look forward too, everything is new.  Some angels will not open the presents under the tree this year; taken away because the cowardly acts of a deranged person who did not look for help and thought it best to plague the world with his actions.

I do not think that it is the right time to talk about gun control as many people do.  I do not think that it is time to have to politicize this tragedy.  It is time to look into ourselves and recognize that things have to change.  Aurora, Columbine, Littleton, VA Tech what the heck is going on?  How are we failing as a country that individuals think this is the way to respond?  Maybe there is no answer.  Maybe mental disease is at a place where folks who need help are not getting it.  

I do not know what any of us could have done about this tragedy.  How can we know if there is danger in our midst?  All I can tell you is what I plan to do. I am going to appreciate the relationships I have a and help everyone I can in whatever way I can to be better.  I pray the small things I do generate kindness and compassion that will spread across the nation and hopefully kill the seeds of hate and despair before they grow.