Left on Boylston

Saturday was a gorgeous day in Boston; Matty and I woke up early, took Maddie in the jogging stroller and ran along the beach in Southie in preparation for our half marathon on Sunday. Just a little warm up to get us ready for the race; stretch our legs and our lungs and get us excited to run our first race together.

I had decided earlier that week that I wanted to go down to Copley  that afternoon to load up on running fuel at Marathon Sports, get my free birthday Pinkberry, hit up a food truck and otherwise spread some money around the area devastated by the bombings on Marathon Monday. It was also a trip of healing for me, to see the memorial set up and smile at some fellow Bostonians and otherwise work on life and my city getting back to normal. I had not been to Copley Square since the Saturday before the Marathon and it's one of my favorite spots to walk around on a beautiful day such as we were having.

We found a parking spot (!!) near the Public Garden, strapped Maddie in her stroller and made our way down Newbury before hopping on to Boylston right across from Trinity Church and the memorial that the community has set up. We walked straight to Marathon Sports to get our purchases taken care of and right as I turned to walk in the door it hit me. The immense grief, the pain, the suffering; it had all occurred right there. As I walked in the store and headed towards the rack I needed I overheard a customer thanking one of the staff for being there. Then she hugged him and started crying. I realized that I could no longer pretend I was just running an errand; this was so much more than that. I had readied my camera to take some pictures of the memorials, the Boston Strong signs, the musicians who gathered to play on the sidewalks, still stained with blood and debris despite best efforts to scrub the bad away, but I found that I could not take any pictures. I was anxious and vulnerable about people gawking and as I stood in the spot where the young boy who lived down the street from me was killed I lost it. I cried. I hurt. I mourned. I was both guilty and thankful as I walked past the spot I stood in last year with my own child, feet from where the first bomb went off. I thought of all of the people and the fear that broke out as the explosions occurred and the incredible reaction of first responders, strangers and people from all over the world that showed their love for Boston that day and every day since then.

And I thanked God for my family, my city and my ability to get up the next day and run 13.1 miles for all of those who will never run again. And then we did what everyone should do: we enjoyed our wonderful city.

Taco Truck!

Seriously delicious.

Reflecting at the Christian Science Pool.

Mama and Maddie

Boston Strong? You bet we are.


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