Ready to Run

I can remember the first time I ran.  I mean truly ran.  I was about six and was watching my brother's soccer practice.  When practice ended, the boys kept on playing and began racing each other from one end of the field to the other.  I asked to join them.  The other boys scoffed, but my brother said sure knowing there was no one I could keep up with the boys two years older than I.

Every time I heard the words, "Ready, set, go,"I took off in a sprint.  I pumped my arms and forced myself to keep up with the boys.  But each time it ended the same;  I came in dead last.  I felt so defeated.  I heard the squeals of the boys and the taunting of "I told you sos"  So, when I wanted to race one more time, the boys said fine.

When I heard the sound of go, I took off.  It was like something inside me opened up.  This fire burned and fueled my legs.  I don't recall much other than what was ahead.  I wanted to reach the finish line more than anything.  My lungs burned when I finally crossed it.  I tumbled to the ground.  When I looked up I realized I had won.  I felt this immense high and exhilaration.  My heart continued to pound as I caught my breath.  It was a feeling like none other.  I did not care about the win that was trivial at this point.  No, I had conquered something more.  I found a way out.  I alone pushed away the doubt of others, the naysayers and those who were against me.  I could run from it and win.

I was ready to run.