Jamaica High School on Gothic Street, the start of the Self-Transcendence 2 mile Race
Last week Ian and I:
ran 3.6 miles on Tues and 4.7 miles on Thursday
Felt really great and proud, we were flying..
Then on Saturday morning decided to try the Self-Transcendence Race that the Sri Chinmoy followers hold every Saturday at 8:07 am at Jamaica High School. It was a perfect, perfect first race. I was afraid of course as the followers of Sri Chinmoy run ultra marathons and do this race all the time. But of course their kindness and peacefulness radiates, and everyone was so nice to us. We paid our 2 dollar fee at the finish line, Ian was # 13, I was # 14. the official told us it was on ‘Gothic St. under the Ginkgo Biloba Trees’ which was around the block from the finish, and was as picturesque as it sounds. Many of the other races had the Race for World Harmony jackets which meant they were indeed ultra marathoners who have run 50 day races. Some of them were much older than we were. We didn’t even know where we were racing, then they told us 2 1/2 times around the block Then they said a beautiful prayer to paraphrase “Supreme being may I see you in my heart’s happiness and my life’s soulfulness” At the go, Ian and I moved with the pack uphill for about 30 seconds which was all I could manage, and I dropped back immediately, Ian kept up with them for a little while before he realized he would burn out. I was quickly far in the back, the last. This was good, and right and expected, but it still was scary too. As I ran past my parked car, I thought about giving up, fortunately I didn’t have the key, and also I was trying the mantra “my heart’s happiness” because I couldn’t remember “my life’s soulfulness” I was hurting in a new way, probably from really pushing myself to my limit in the beginning, and I also had for a short while and overwhelming sense of grief. it was deep in my heart, grief that had no words, but my mind chatter was feeling just sorry for myself for not resting more the night before and beginning to blame others..then I turned a corner and the rising sun led my way and I was filled with elation and a sense of God’s presence. there was an older gentleman who was walk/running and he would drop behind me walking and then sprint ahead, but the last time he did that I was on a hill the sun was in front of me and I pushed it a little bit and he never caught up with me again. So I was second to last at 22:00 minutes. They were already doing the closing ceremonies–the first three women and the first three men were honored and each received a bananna. I went next to Ian who was about a minute ahead of me in time, not noticing that women and men were now divided, but gratefully joined in a refrain of the prayer “Supreme being, may I see you in my heart’s happiness and my life’s soulfulness” then we all took prashadama in the form of a cookie, which was like an inverse oreo. On the table was a picture of Sri Chinmoy in a small car that looked electric. Ian and I celebrated our accomplishment by going to their breakfast place.
Forest Park is so beautiful
The next day, we wanted to run longer as the 2 mile was less than we usually try to do on Saturday, but when I got out of the car at Forest Park I felt chilled and down. We ran but it wasn’t fun at all, I felt burnt out. We turned around because Ian suspected 2 boys in our path of no good and he wanted to get away from them, and when he said turn around, I said, oh yes, I want to get back. We did approximately 3 miles.
So this was the most mileage packed week to date — 13 + miles. But I am not feeling that I have Transcended myself…rather tired…