It was Tuesday, April 30th. Dash and Dine #3. It was really the second for me, but third of the series. I skipped the second one because it was too cold and snowy (just like the previous week). I had invited my man to come out that morning before I went to work but he'd decided to stay home. After all, he'd just gotten back from Alaska and was still dealing with tingling frostbitten toes and exhaustion. The day wasn't great either. It was overcast and chilly as we were expecting yet another snow storm that would start that evening. Anyway, I didn't think too much about it, packed my running gear and went to work.
Close to the end of the day, the man-friend changed his mind and asked if I could come get him at home so we could go together. He said he wanted to cheer me on and walk Levi around there... we also had plans to have dinner with a couple of friends so it was just better logistics to drive together from Boulder Rez after the race. I picked him up and we drove up to the Rez. Now that I think about it, he even said he'd drive but I told him I was gonna drive anyway so we took my car. Ok, that may be too detailed, but you'll see why little things mattered this day (it all comes together, I promise).
We get to Boulder Rez shortly before 6pm, I pick up my packet and head out for a warm up run, it's weird to run 1 mile when you're running a 3-miler, but whatever. It was one of those days that I felt pretty good, but wasn't sure the outcome would be the best. Those little 5k's are hard and painful. Anyway, I hung out with Chuck, got ready and at 6:25pm started walking towards the start line... except that it was an awkward walk. Chuck and I were hugging, and he sorta kept on holding me back a little. "What's going on?! I guess he's not in a rush". He eventually asked: "Hey, what's your fastest 5k?" So I said: "25:50, why?". He replied "well, you have to run your fastest, if you do, I have a question to ask." Hmmm, OKAAAY. Nothing made much sense to me. "It's not like I don't try EVERY TIME to run my fastest", I thought. But whatever, I sorta nodded and was distracted since I just really wanted to get to the start line.
The race starts and I just go ALL OUT. I look down at my watch and I was running 6:23 min/mile to be exact. That was WAY too fast for me. I try to get in a rhythm and just go. I realize I'm in the first group with only one girl ahead of me. "This is SO not me... I'm NEVER in the front." Oh well, I was content and settled into a slower than 6:23 min/mile pace, but steady and fast for me. Once I was on the first dam and settled, one girl passed me and I just let it be. I was running my own race. But that was when the random thinking began: "What does he want to ask? How I train to get faster? I mean, well, he always tells me to go faster... he thinks I'm a sandbagger, but really last week, I gave it my all and it was my fastest 5k, not sure I can PR two weeks in a row... althoughhhh, it WAS a longer course last week which added roughly 50 seconds to my time, so I'm sure I can actually go faster this time... wait, what?? A second chick just passed me!!" My random thinking got distracted by that second girl that passed me and now I was in fourth place, yet my pace was still so perfect and consistent. "Hmmm...should I push it? I still have a whole 1.1 mile to go. Is that the hill where Chuck told me he'd be at? Is he there now? Hmmm it's too far, I can't see, but is Levi there? He'd be with Levi FOR SURE. Oh check out that chick, she's getting farther and farther away". I'm not lying, this is how my mind wonders when I'm running.
Anyway, I focused during the last mile of the run on the actual running and not the thinking. I got closer to that last girl that passed me and on the last 10th of a mile I was able to pick up a good sprint, catch her and pass her to claim the 3rd place for women. Chuck was standing right there at the finish line and my friend Laura said I ran an amazing race. Looked at the time and well, I ran a 24:37. Indeed my fastest yet. Once I barely caught my breath, Chuck held my hand and he walked me to a small hill slightly away from the finish line but with pretty cool views of the lake. He mentioned how many memories we have there (which we do), and he added that I now had a PR as well. While I started to notice something was weird, I was still working on catching my breath... and while it was all happening really fast and I was distracted by a great race, all of a sudden it all stopped. And there he was. Down on one knee holding a gorgeous diamond ring. I'm gonna say this again: everything stopped. And then he asked: "Will you marry me?". I can't even remember if I even said yes, or just smiled and showed him my left hand. I'm ALMOST sure, I did, but all I can remember of that moment is his face, I remember looking at him and thinking: "He's perfect and I love him".
|Don't focus on the teary eyes... but on my new shiny ring!|
We hugged and kissed and at that moment, I felt the first rain drop of what would soon become a historic May snow storm. I'm so excited to start a family and this new adventure alongside my best friend, partner in crime and the love of my life. I am so happy, I can't even express it in words.
PS- I made him drive back so I could text my mom and friends! See? I told you it mattered, I should've let him drive his car all along. :)