Monday, October 18th has been set as a reminder on my Outlook calendar for the past few months. Any time I scrolled forward to that week, I would see a little box on that date, set for 9AM, and marked "Register for Boston". I honestly was unsure of whether or not I would run Boston when I marked my calendar; afterall, it is less than three months after my due date. After an email from Mary a few weeks prior to the registration, I determined that I would register and then see how I felt postpartum. I have never had a child before, so I honestly don't know what I am in for. However, I felt like I needed something to work for, and Mary agreed to coach me through my recovery during those months.
Thus, Monday came and I opened up the BAA website right at 9AM. Of course, as we know from all the stories, the site was completely overwhelmed with people trying to register, and it was not working for me. I went back to my work, and looked at it a few hours later, using a website that my friend Jen posted on Facebook. (And, Jen is due in November with her first so she is just as zany as me!) During the process, I noticed that I checked a waiver stating that they were not allowing deferrals for this year for the first time. I hesitated at continuing, called my husband and father asking them to both promise to help me train for this thing by assisting me with childcare, and then clicked on. Nice- I was registered and thinking that I either had set myself up for a tremendous athletic feat or tremendous pressure three months postpartum.
I received texts, emails, phone calls, tweets and Facebook messages all day reminding me to register. Boston.com reported at lunchtime that the race was half filled, and in the evening, the messages turned into sad blurbs from friends and tweeters who did not make it into the race. I felt guilty for registering, knowing that on race day, I won't be 100% recovered from having the baby, and knowing that I will be 100% involved in the baby rather than marathon training. But, I realize that I cannot let my guilt get in the way. I earned that spot at Boston last year, and I have not been able to race this year as I have been pregnant since the marathon. I deserve a marathon.
Needless to say, I do think at time, "What have I gotten myself into?" Really, I don't have any idea what it is to be sleep deprived and have a screaming infant. But, in the back of my head, I know that having something that is so selfishly for me during this time will help me get through those months and help us adjust to life as a new family. And, I know I made a wise decision to have a running coach during this time. Mary has three kids and gets what I yet don't, so working with her will give me the confidence that I can make it to the finish line on Patriot's Day.
Boston 2011 will not be my best marathon- I have no illusions about that. I do feel that it will be the most challenging and rewarding though. And, it will be great to have Baby Ramsey at the finish line to greet me.
3 years ago