Yesterday I set out to break my distance pushing record of 1.3 kilometres. I hoped to double that record but wasn't sure that I'd be able to. This comprises two laps of a very large mall. I set out pushing myself a little harder than I should have as I burned up a lot of energy quickly. I made good time and good distance before I had to first stop and take a brief rest.
When I crossed the start line of the first lap and entered my second lap I was already giving myself permission to stop. My rationale was that I had come to beat my record and that had been achieved. That dialogue carried me quite a long distance and then suddenly, finishing was actually possible. I was pushing quickly, with renewed energy towards my goal. I was sweating, I was clearly working hard.
I passed several other people, going the other way, that were also lapping the mall. All were on foot and all were equally purposeful with their strides. There were those that passed me several times going my way too, so I wasn't alone in using the mall as a place to get in a bit of a 'run'.
Seeing the finish line was a real emotional thrill and I was determined to get there so that I'd be in under an hour. Then a fellow coming the other way, who I had encountered a few times as he made his way around much more quickly than me, caught my eye. I looked up and he gave me a quick thumbs up, a kind of, 'good going' moment of encouragement.
I can't tell you what that meant to me. It was a moment of inclusion, not as a disabled person, but as a fellow 'lapper,' a fellow 'runner' and it really mattered to me.
It was such a little thing.
Funny how those matter so much.