I’m fairly positive I have never been more happy to be someplace than when I stepped off the plane in Lincoln, Nebraska last Saturday. As soon as I got out of the gate area I was ambushed by my two best friends and just felt such an overwhelming sense of joy. These girls know me inside and out and when we’re together everything is easy. We could do the most exciting thing imaginable or just sit in a room together and not necessarily even talk – it wouldn’t matter. None of us have any biological sisters, but we have one another, and are sisters by choice.
We went straight from the airport to the indoor track to watch the intersquad meet and it was so nice to see so many of my former teammates. I hadn’t told many people I was coming and it was fun to see the surprised look on their faces. I miss my team more than anything else in Nebraska. Although the indoor races weren’t always my favourite or best events, I loved being at practice and meets in the indoor track. The whole team was physically so close together and there was such a great energy to draw from. Not every NCAA track team is like this and I feel so lucky to have been able to be part of one that was.
The rest of the week was spent catching up with friends over coffee, dinner or on a run. All of us and none of us are doing the same thing. That is, we are all doing different things, but all doing what we feel is best for us at this current point in our lives. A few are attending grad school, one is taking a break from school and traveling/volunteering for the next half-year, another has decided to quit their PhD program to focus on what they really want to do and what will make them happy, and I am putting my focus solely on running. Everyone has their own set of challenges and tough decisions they’ve had to make, but ultimately I am so proud of all of my friends for choosing their own happiness over what society or their parents expect them to do.
After a long, nightmarish day of travel yesterday (think 3+ hours sitting on a tarmac in Cheyenne, Wyoming) I finally made it back to Regina. I don’t care how cold it is, or that I don’t have my luggage, I’m just happy to be home for the holidays. Waking up in my own bed, sitting having coffee and breakfast with my family and settling in to watch a movie is the perfect way to spend a lazy Sunday. I’m looking forward to a lot more days like this in the next few weeks.