A Block Away From the Boston Marathon Bombings and These Are My Thoughts

From inside the press room on lockdown, the race clock never stopped running.

From inside the press room on lockdown, the race clock never stopped running.

I don’t know when I stopped shaking.

Even now, two days later, I can’t stop hearing the booms. One boom, I looked at my fellow editors. The second boom, I looked at the TV.

A spokesperson for the B.A.A. ran out of the press room at the Fairmont Copley Plaza Hotel. Seconds, though they felt like minutes, went by. He ran back in- two explosions went off near the finish, he said. We were in lockdown.

Someone has attacked my city, my family, my life, my love, I thought.

My dad has run the marathon many times. My mom worked for the city of Boston as deputy arts commissioner, under Mayor Tommy Menino, and his predecessors. My grandparents immigrated to Brighton from Ireland in 1955 and my grandfather founded the New England Irish Cultural Center. My uncle was the head EMT leading operations at the finish line medical tents when the bombs went off. This was my family’s city.

Boston is my home and the Boston Marathon is our city’s homecoming celebration. In the days that have passed I’ve tried to remain strong. I’ve tried to hold my ground. But we all have a breaking point. Kind of like a long run. There’s always a point where we have to stop, take in how far we’ve come and catch our breath. The unfortunate part of that is the reality that once we stop, we find it easier to stop in the coming miles, moments, or days.

I was waiting for my stopping point, my walk break. I knew it would come. I was trying to be ready for it. But it came like a bonk. A wave of emotion I had no control over. Since it came yesterday afternoon, it’s returned at the most unexpected moments.

I can’t stop hearing the booms, seeing the images on TV of people’s limbs, and shaking, just shaking.

All I know is someone, on that horrific day, attacked my city and our support group. Marathoning, when it comes down to it, is a selfish sport. We train for our own goals, miss out on time with loved ones, family and friends, all in the name of meeting our goal- to run 26.2 miles. At the end of the day, what does that goal mean if we don’t have someone to celebrate it with? If our support group is not waiting for us at the finish line.

And on Monday, April 15 someone attacked our support group. There was no one to meet us at the finish line. The helpers ran in and did what they could but at the end of the day we were all looking for answers. But if I know anything, marathoners, the running community, and most importantly, the people of Boston, are strong. We will reach deep into our energy reserves to rise up and help each other heal. It’s going to take time but I truly think we will come out of this stronger and closer than ever before.

As for me, I’m still shaking and I don’t know when it will stop. But I know it will stop and I’ll find my finish line in Boston, with a huge support group waiting for me and the rest of the community, at the end.

8 thoughts on “A Block Away From the Boston Marathon Bombings and These Are My Thoughts

  1. I am truly sorry and wish there was more that I could do than provide prayers! I visited Boston last March and the historian of the BAA provided me with a tour of the BAA office as I was finishing my Undergraduate Thesis on the Boston Marathon. I felt like it had effected me on a more personal level as well, not quite the same as you due to your more personal experience. After I saw the alert on my phone that there was a bombing, I felt that it had effected me due to my extensive research on the race and its history and visiting with the BAA.

    I am truly sorry and if there is anything I can do or if you need to talk—I and the many others are all here! Take care of yourself.

  2. I was there in Boston during the weekend. Good thing we decided to head back to Ohio on Sunday and watch the race on tv. I am still having goosebumps as i watch the news on tv. I left Boston with a happy heart but then upon hearing the news on Monday, I was completely shocked and heartbroken. My fellow runners were attacked.

    Stay safe there, I will continue to run for boston!

  3. I am so glad that you and your colleagues were all safe. I can’t even imagine what you went through. It breaks my heart that something so pure and innocent as a marathon was targeted for an attack. Love and strength to all runners, our spectators and all of Boston!

  4. As someone who was at the finish line, cheering on my friends, just 5 minutes before the bombs went off- I know what you’re going through. It was for sure, the most frightening day of my life. But we runners need to unite and be strong- no one should be allowed to take that away from us! <3

  5. Pingback: Mantra Me that PR | Fit Girl. Happy Girl.

  6. Pingback: {Monday Motivation} The Marathon | Fit Girl. Happy Girl.

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