Am writing this to explain the hiatus since the last post.
I did run the NYC Marathon on Sunday Nov. 7th. But a few days before the race, I was aware that my mom’s condition in India was getting worse. That weighed heavily on my mind and I was expecting a call to rush home any moment. So, with a lot on my mind and a heavy heart I showed up at the starting point at Staten Island on race day. It was cold and windy and the wait was about 4 hours before the start of my wave. This wait is the part of NYC marathon that I did not like.
However, I was finally off the corral and breezed through Verrazano bridge and Brooklyn. By the time I reached Queensboro bridge at 15th mile I was starting to cramp and was struggling to keep up with my race partners. I asked them to go ahead and told them I would walk for some distance. Team Galloway, the running group I belong to, had our own aid stop at about 17th mile. I stopped there for a while to overcome my disappointment and replenished myself with much needed snacks and Gatorade. The temptation to give up the race was very strong, but then I thought of my mom and decided that even if I had to crawl on my hands and knees, I will finish the race and get the medal for her.
So off I went, limping, walking and hobbling to complete the rest of the distance. At about mile 20 I saw Al Roker, the famed NBC weatherman. That’s when I had a sly thought. Come what may, I was not going to let myself finish slower than him! In the end I finished about 75 minutes ahead of him. He probably struggled during the last few miles.
Somewhere during the course, I had also seen the rescued Chilean miner Edison Pena running with two pace setters carrying the Chilean flag. He eventually finished a few minutes ahead of me.
There is me in the white cap somewhere during the race
I finally finished the race both physically and emotionally drained. A couple of days later, I received the much dreaded call from India. My mother was admitted to ICU, after her body reacted adversely to radiation. She was undergoing chemotherapy and was being started with radiation to arrest the cancer that had spread from her breast to most parts of the body.
I rushed to see her in Chennai. Though she could not talk, she did open her eyes a couple of times and I believe she recognized me. And then one morning she breathed her last. She had turned 70 couple of months ago.
Funeral and post-funeral rites were stressful and heart-wrenching. I returned to the US sad and reflective. Updating the blog seemed trivial given what I had lost.
I miss her and hope and wish her soul has found its resting place.