Seven marathons, in seven days, in seven states. Child sexual abuse.
The harder I run, the stronger the message.
That was my purpose.
It was tough to predict what I would get out of this experience when I registered to undertake the Bravehearts 777 challenge; even leading into the final few days before the first marathon my search was uncertain. I knew my purpose for attending, but nothing could prepare me for what I walked away with and now attempt to process.
I have read a lot about endurance sports giving you the ability to discover yourself on a deeper level. Points after time endured that give you access to heightened awareness and consciousness. After day three I noticed I was fatigued but still running at a high frequency, an indescribable energy that was slowly drawing me away from the normality of everyday life and further into a connection not only with myself but those aligned to the challenge. I have never felt more alive, and those final four days have changed my life, my eyes flood writing in reflection. No sooner had I finished the marathon I was on, I would desire the next. During the transition between states, I likened the feeling to when I destructively drank, however in this instance, the deeper the sense of solitude within myself, the more open I become to the amazing people around me. I wanted to put myself through more to absorb and experience this feeling in greater amounts.
On course, I received more out of what was not said, than anything ever mentioned. The silent and mutual acknowledgements of pain, guilt and sorrow, equally matched with strength, compassion and understanding. We were all afforded different levels of processing at erratic stages over those six hours, and we all shared every once of positive and negative energy we had. I have distinct images and emotions as I picture my fellow warriors and my heart fills with nothing but love and respect for each. I left an army several weeks ago and signed straight back up to another.
I also hurt more during the week than I have in a long time. I felt everything and with all my senses. The presence was so strong with some connections that I had to remove myself. My soul bled for the mothers on this trip, and I cannot articulate what I witnessed. I have spent so many years focusing on the pain I carry as a victim, that I never gave thought to my own parents. I have never seen tears shed with so much love and suffering in my life, and it now haunts me that there are not only the survivors carrying this daily but also those who feel helplessness. The week allowed me to lose pain I carry, however, at the sacrifice of now hurting more for others.
I am finding it hard on the come down at the moment and will continue to process this for weeks. I love each one of you who fought this battle with me and send you strength over the coming weeks. This experience has left me humbled and in awe of you (animals).
I know a girl who is also struggling at present, and I can’t help but pray she finds her words. I have laid this down raw in the hope it gives her strength.