It's amazing that I, a single working mother with a behaviorally challenged former foster kid could train for a marathon but I've been truly blessed with the most amazing community of friends through the Melrose Running Club.
Whenever I've fallen down (which I did twice, scraped and bloody), they've been there to bandage me up. When I needed help with childcare, they stepped in to watch Christopher. They refused to let me run alone at night in the dark. They got me through some hot weather long runs where I didn't think I'd be able to finish but did because they were there running beside me. One week when I was feeling overwhelmed with life, I almost started crying on the running trails and they hugged me and said it would be okay. And after a good night's sleep, it all was.
After spending so much time with these amazing, warm, compassionate people, I know that if, God forbid, some illness or accident were to befall me, that they would be there to help me in whatever capacity I needed them. It goes without saying that I would do all the same for them as well. Quite frankly, the friends I have made through the Melrose Running Club have become my community and I feel truly blessed to have them in my life.
|Just two of the amazing rock stars that I ran with today|
I'm also a member of a Facebook support group for parents of children with ADHD and I see the struggles these parents have; very similar to many of the ones I've experienced as well. When life gets them down (which sadly, it often will) they come to the support group looking for a little understanding and camaraderie from a group of people who get what it's like to raise a child with ADHD. It's hard! And with so many people getting in your face to tell you that you're just a bad parent because ADHD doesn't really exist, sometimes it can feel even harder. How can you pick yourself back up when people all around you are telling you it's your fault for being down in the first place? Life can be so demoralizing.
At one time in history, we thought "it takes a village" to raise children. Nowadays everyone's so isolated and doing everything on their own, which makes the daily grind so difficult. On top of that, people can be so unbelievably judgmental! Plus, we're at a point in America that seems to be dominated by people who are all about "me, me me" and there is a serious lack of compassion, even from people who claim to be Christian. I have to say, you can claim to be whatever you want but unless you choose to be kind and supportive towards people who are suffering, then you are not following the path that Jesus forged. Selfish and Christian are mutually exclusive and frankly you need to pick one.
That is why I feel so blessed. I have friends who truly care about me and are there to support me when I need them (and I am happy to be there for them as well). It's a tough world out there and we all need all the help we can get. I hope our society stops choosing to be so selfish and narcissistic but in the meantime, at least I've got my community and you know what? I will take it.