The low early morning sun glistened and then bounced off the ripples of the bay as I slowly did my morning run around Castle Island. Other runners nodded and smiled either in pity at my poor attempt at running or in being united in getting up early for morning exercise, I wasn’t sure which, but I smiled and nodded back anyway. As I ran I realized I was happy, it was a perfect morning, beautiful in fact and I felt a small moment of peace. That feeling when all seems right with the world and it’s going to be a good day. A minute later I felt a pang and started to cry, inconsolable unashamed sobbing as my thoughts drifted and I asked myself how it could be such a perfect beautiful morning with people smiling and at the same time there is such wickedness in the world? It was a perfect morning that day two weeks ago.
Let me go back a few weeks. We have a pedometer challenge going on at work. I am good with a challenge being quite competitive, so this was the kick in the butt I needed to actually move my butt. In order to reach our goal of 500,000 steps in 12 weeks we needed to walk an average of 7,200 steps a day. I was doing really well and then as I was catching up from vacation and working from home a week last Monday with the marathon going on in the background on TV, I watched the first and then second bomb go off as it actually happened and my heart stopped. Everyone knows what happened; I don’t need to share any of that. I immediately went in action mode and for a whole week I worked on the safety of our office and our people. I didn’t sleep, cry or think clearly about anything else. That Monday my pedometer read 743 steps.
I have been through this before in Manchester and London, England and of course all of America and the world was affected by 9/11. I was unscathed as was my family and for the most part my friends, but I did not go unhurt. The emotional pain I felt at the time was like I had been punched hard in the stomach. Thank goodness for a lot of us our minds are a wonderful thing that help us move on and be normal, get on with our lives, not look back in sadness but move on with a renewed will and determination. It’s a good thing we don’t really remember pain.
I don’t understand evil or wickedness. I don’t know how someone can intentionally and wilfully hurt another human being. When I do think about these horrible actions I almost shut down completely, but that morning of my run I sat on a bench for 30 minutes and allowed myself to think about it. I allowed myself to feel angry then lucky then guilty and then absolute heartbreaking sadness and hurt. I am crying again now for all those people I do not know and for myself for being safe. I held back because I felt I had no right to cry and now I realize I needed to cry more than I ever imagined.
Maybe I am naive but I want peace and I liked the feeling of it for that small moment of time at Castle Island.
At the end of my run I had already done my 10,000 steps for the day, it felt painfully sad and good. I want to be as strong as my home of Boston so with my pedometer challenge I am going to work on getting donations for steps to donate to the One Fund with my office. It is something small but it is something.