Eight years ago, I had recently arrived home with a newborn, wondering what on earth I was doing, and how I could possibly have fallen so completely and madly in love with someone in an instant.
Now that newborn is a funny, smart, maddeningly stubborn and strong-willed, handsome young boy who, despite acting like he's oh-so-cool and grown up, is still very happy to snuggle up next to his mom and dad whenever he has the opportunity. And for that, I am so, so thankful.
We celebrated with cupcakes on the day of his birthday, and gave him his 'big' present - a new bike - for which he was very appreciative and thankful. But in true Gabe fashion, after thanking us profusely for the bike, he asked "there's more, right?"
He was holding out for his most wished-for gift - an Angry Birds game. And much to his delight, we did get it for him, and he and Dante have had a blast playing with it.
The big event, though, was his party at the movie theater yesterday. It went great, but I'm glad I limited him to inviting only 8 kids, because keeping track of any more than that would have stressed me out too much. We saw "The Lorax," and the kids all loved it. The best part of the day was watching them all get up out of their seats and literally start dancing in the aisles during the closing credits. It's pretty fun to hang out with a bunch of 8-year-olds : )
We marked another occasion this weekend, too - my last long, long run of training. I was almost as excited about that as I was about Gabe's birthday!
I know that I still need to run the full 26.2 in a few weeks, but having that final long run done is such a huge relief to me, and I already feel like an enormous weight has been lifted off my shoulders.
I ran the first loop of the course again, for 16 miles, then did a 2-mile out and back along the ocean to make it 20.
For the most part, it went well. Not without my tired moments, and not without moments where I wanted to quit, but overall, I felt pretty good. And my pace was good, too - 8:36 average. What I'm most proud of, though, is that I was very consistent with my pacing. That's something I typically struggle with, so to hold a pretty even pace for 20 miles was a huge accomplishment.
There's still some work to be done, including a few more track workouts and tempo runs, but the end is in sight, and getting closer every day!!!!