Friday, June 19, 2009


I remember sitting in a hospital bed more than ten years ago. I was in the recovery room after my fourth left knee surgery. My knees. Hurting. My college basketball career. Over. I felt worthless. I felt alone. I felt like the previous 10+ years of training, AAU, summer camps, high school sports, parent's efforts, game after game after game were pointless. I was worried. I didn't know what else I could do. I was an athlete. An athlete without good knees.

A few days later, I told my coach that I wasn't going to be able to play college basketball for him anymore. I explained that I wanted to make the best out of my knees, be able to play with my kids someday and walk when I turned 65. He was in agreement, yet obviously disappointed, and set me up with a job in the athletic ticket office for the next two years to work for the remainder of my scholarship.

Since that day, I never thought I would be able to push my body the way I have for the last 18 weeks. My knees, be it tired, feel wonderful. Even better with running. It's almost like they enjoy it. I set a goal this year of running a 1/2 marathon. But, I pushed further. And tomorrow morning, I will hopefully complete my goal of running a full marathon. Geesh. Who would have known?

So, what did I learn while sitting in that hospital bed? I learned patience. I learned diligence. I learned how to love my parents. I learned how to trust. I learned how to set goals. All of which help me be a better person each and every day. A person that loves to play with her three kids and will definitely be able to walk when she turns 65.

1 comment:

Beccarigg said...

You are an inspiration as always Jess. It's so great that you've come back from all those surgeries to run a marathon! The athlete is still in you, and it has done you well these last 18 weeks. I'm so impressed that you've done all your runs and had pretty much a perfect training season. I know you'll do awesome tomorrow. Best of luck!