Sometimes, it's the little things that put things into perspective-a kind word, a long-forgotten and newly-found item, or even the sight of the moon on a clear night. Recently, it's been the ever-present, yet oddly reassuring hum of generators, the glimpse of police cars making the rounds, day in and day out, and the smell of felled trees in various states of gnarled upheaval.
As runners and walkers, many of whom like to push our minds and bodies to the extreme to see what we're made of...well, we were humbled and found out just how puny we truly are last Friday night.
And when Saturday morning rolled around, and we stepped out our front doors wide-eyed and even wider-mouthed to see what had become of our communities, we were once again humbled. By you, through your strength and resiliency, complete strangers and varied acquaintances.
To the neighbors whom you finally got to know, as they trudged to your house-unrequested, and whose homes and bodies were in equal states of chaos and disorder, I might add-to lend a day's worth of backbreaking chainsaw duty or raking, to the Alabama/Mississippi/etc. power and tree men and women that once again came to our aid-with positivity, compassion, and heartfelt smiles when they were sorely needed, well...I say thank you. We offered you beers and water (which you accepted in equal parts), and when that failed, we offered you corny jokes, recounted sports memories, and even hard-to-come-by ice. But through those small gestures, what we really meant was "thank you". I realize we said it then, and that we've probably said it a thousand times since...but still, it's not enough for us. So from me, from my immediate family, and from my headstrong, odd-but-you-wouldn't-have-us-any-other-way running family, we couldn't have done it without you.
We will regroup, rebuild, and rebound. But only because you were there, with grace, humility, and sincerity, to help us live through one of the most traumatic times of our lives. We leaned on you then, and we hope to heck we'll never need to do so again, but it's nice to know you're out there...once again waiting to be our heroes.