Monday, July 18, 2011

CAST: The RUCKUS Race Edition

It started great.

Months ago a group of us from church decided we'd tackle  RUCKUS Pittsburgh.

This Saturday, we gathered to compete against ourselves, in this 4 mile race that also included 16 obstacles.

I have absolutely no desire to rehash the details of what happened to our dear Carrie on one of those obstacles. I'll only add that she left the race on a stretcher, with a badly broken leg (in three places no less).

Reaching the finish line lost its luster once she got injured. While we weren't necessarily running together, there were 5 of us in sight distance of one another for half of the race. Sometimes we'd run together, sometimes we'd branch off. Only, when we reached the Gorilla Bars we were all lined up together. So, thankfully, when Carrie heard and felt the break, we were all there. Including our spouses, gathered on a hill to take pictures.

And then, for me, the race stopped.

Carrie is one of my most cherished Beaver friends. And I really wanted this for her. Only, now . . .

After being told by the guys to go and finish the race, as there was nothing I could do while she lay there surrounded by medical personnel, I ran off. Reluctantly. No wind in my sail.

I met up with a few guys who offered to run with me, having witnessed what had just happened to my team-mate.

It was one of these guys who gave me a verbal spot on the Ranger Bars, for after witnessing Carrie, I was terrified. I knew I MUST complete the challenge, but I was tentative. And when one is tentative there is the opportunity for injury.  He talked me through obstacle. We met up again at the finish where he gave me a fist-bump. That was cool.

But I wanted to fist-bump Carrie.

My drive for confronting the remaining obstacles: the walls, the tires, the rope ladders, was "meh". Whereas, at the start I figured I'd be excited over conquering the obstacles, my mind was now divided between, "Oooh. I've never scaled a wall before. " and "How is Carrie?"

So, while I finished, and have the bruises to prove it, there was much left undone.

It was an empty experience. While once again, the race confirmed that all the physical work I've been doing has really made a difference in my strength, it just wasn't the same with a friend down.

There are certain people in your life that inspire you. Cheer you. Encourage you. Challenge you. Carrie is one of them. Without an ounce of sarcasm, annoyance, or negativity, she consistently loves.

I dig her.

Rest up my brave friend.

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