As almost everyone that has read my blog knows, I run for a beautiful young lady named Lilyan. Lily is such an inspiration to me in many ways which I have written about many times. She has lived her entire life fighting up hill battles and winning them over and over again.
A couple of years ago in the blog Angels I talked about when I was sick and not doing very well that this (at the time) 6 year old girl went out, on vacation, and put in extra work just for me because her mom told her I was sick. Today I decided it was time to return the favor.
I told Ladonna that when I got off work I was going to try for a long run, with Phase II of training for Lilyan’s Run coming in just two weeks I needed to try for at least 9 or 10 miles, maybe up to a two hour run. When I arrived at the Kingsport Greenbelt it was already getting hot and sticky and I thought if I was going to go it had to be fast, maybe just 7 or 8 miles before it got miserable. I decided that if I was going cut it short, I might as well run the hilly part and set off. By the time I got to the Exchange Place at the top of the hill where the actual Greenbelt ends and sidewalks begin the heat was already becoming a factor but I stopped at the fountain and kept going up Orebank Road. At some point I started to think about Lily and the message she had sent me back then, “I’m putting in extra miles on my walker for you.” This has been a hard week for her and her parents, harder than usual, as she has had some very important extra treatments done. How could I not do the same for her?
So here we go, “Lilyan, your mom told me what you have been doing this week and I know you had a couple of long, hard days, so I put in some extra miles just for you today. Instead of giving into the heat and turning around I ran 16.2 sweaty miles for you.” And there she is, my personal angel inspiring me yet again.