I hope you have the time of your life …

These are good times, my friends. Good times.

As I prepare to run the longest run of my entire life in 3 days, my job this week has been to relax and be stress-free. And you know what I’ve realized? It’s really not that difficult.

There is a lot to be happy about. Whether I’m  going to run a life-changing run with my brother at my side and my sister cheering me on (she ran a marathon a year ago!), or whether I am relaxing at home with my dogs who want nothing more to snuggle with me, life is good.

I smile as I see the cycle shoes I recommended changing someone’s workout; I smile as I see I’m not the only one who thinks my friend is a handsome Jimmy Fallon-type who absolutely deserves to be on TV; I smile watching my friend learn and grow as she moves from one coast to the other – and knowing I’m not the only one who loves the art not for the money; I smile as one of my closest friends moved to the West Coast to find himself – and the best part?  He came back, and with a wife and a baby … and, speaking of …

There’s another reason I’m smiling, too …

I’m going to be an aunt! My brother-in-law, Gray, and his wife, Katie, are expecting! This will be the first niece/nephew on that side of the family, and it is so super-exciting. They are both two of the most nurturing people I know, and this child is so loved already. I cannot wait to spoil this child.

When I run, especially long distances, I often think about the children. When I have a mile left to go, I think of Sadie, who is one – one year, one mile. I think of her attempting to walk – she’s going through her own life-changing steps. I think of Cai when I need some strength during the long distances. He’s already run a marathon, you see – Jenny was 6 weeks pregnant with him when she ran her marathon last year. I also think of Jenny, 5 months pregnant, smoking Kevin and me at a 5K in March. So proud. And I think of Mia, 3 years old, standing at the finish line with her pom-poms, yelling “Go, Missa, go!” She’s already picked out the water belt from TrySports that she wants for her first race, and it’s pink, of course. That’s my girl.

And now, I will think about this new little boy or girl, who I will get to meet officially in June, and that’ll be sure to keep a smile on my face as I climb that hill on Colville Road on Saturday …

I will think of all of you, climbing your own hills. For some, it’s been a long climb, but I hope it’s been worth every step.

(Oh, and there’s this to be happy about, too: I realized I’ve lost about 10 pounds since I’ve been marathon training! It kinda snuck up on me, since I don’t weigh myself often or at the same time of day or anything, so there’s always a range when I step on that scale. But the high end of the range has slowly but surely come down. And the low end of the range is only 2 pounds away from my goal weight – Happy dance!)