It’s 9:29 a.m. Saturday morning and I am propelling myself down the middle of Pennsylvania Avenue. I am about to finish my first 5K in three years. Three years in which I helped get a guy elected president, got married, sold and bought a house, and had a baby.
I am finishing ahead of people wearing fancy running togs and iPod setups that appear capable of missile launching.
I am finishing in the shadow of the Washington Monument in the greatest city in the world.
I am finishing with Nina Simone’s “Sinner Man” making me finish faster.
I am finishing ahead of people in their early 20s. (Editor’s note: To be fair, some of them were GW students who I’m pretty sure were still drunk when they started the race.)
I am finishing uphill.
I am finishing up a really long hill.
I am finishi— seriously, how long is this effing hill?
I am finishing seven minutes faster than I’d expected.
I am finishing meeting my goal of not stopping to walk.
I am finishing this race 14 months after an abdominal surgery left me in so much pain I couldn’t stand up without wanting to cry.
I am finishing after slowing briefly to kiss the baby who arrived during that surgery 14 months ago.
I am finishing a little choked up.
I am not finished.
The Bird is back.