I have been having a hard time putting this post together. I mean, really, what do you say about something, someone that is beyond words. One of a kind. Superhuman. Amazing. Awe-inspiring. I know. It just doesn't cover it.
To have the opportunity to be able to witness first hand her greatness and awesomeness just leaves me stumped. I will be forever grateful for the experience of being there. Without getting all girly and mushy and emotional...on that corner, of that hot Phoenix city block, you could FEEL the love and amazing energy that is EMZ.
Em was all about the run. All about the Sojourner Center. And doing all she could to raise awareness and funds for them. Yes, she is the most physically fit person I have ever personally met and known. She made that 100 mile run look like an easy downhill 10K. But aside from the physicality, her determination, focus and dedication and heart was what was so amazing. Running is hard. Running at the 16 hour mark is crazy ridiculous hard. Running at the 22.5 hour mark is a thought process of 'is this really happening right now, cause this isn't real'. And in all those moments, her smile never left her. Her energy never left her. She talked and joked with everyone that came up to chat with her. Even complete strangers that were in disbelief and had to ask her what the heck she was doing.
Her family is full of strength and love for their wife, mother, daughter, sister, and aunt. Everyone was ready to do whatever necessary to help and did. But I expected nothing less. With a one of a kind like Emily, of course her family would be just as incredible.
One of my duties was to be in charge of social media. To not only be able to feel the support and love in Phoenix, but to feel all the love and well wishes across blogland, twitter, emails and texts was awesome. I usually shared them in intervals, mostly because they came non-stop throughout the entire 24. We laughed and teased the entire night. You have no idea how much all those thoughts and comments of encouragement helped. Thank you to everyone. Even though you weren't physically there, we could feel your presence and happy/positive vibes/wishes/prayers.
The last two and a half hours was when we saw her sheer will take over. This was the point where, yes she was in the downhill stretch. She could have just walked it out til the end. She proved her rock star status, she had this 24 hours in the bag. But there was the second goal. The 24 hr she knew she had. But without the 100, she would have been disappointed. Everyone said the number didn't matter. But it mattered. She pushed through those last two hours, still running. Running close to the same pace she started at! She bottled up all that pain and fatigue, put it up on a shelf, and ran. When she closed in on 100, I wept. I am fighting tears right now just thinking about it. To see her conquer her goal and with 3 minutes to spare, was overwhelming. There was not a dry eye on that block. For all of us to see her give every once of her being to not only such a worthy cause, but to accomplish such a huge feat was nothing less than stunning. It was her heart that got there. Her resolve to not only start what she finished but to do it with grace, compassion, sincerity, style and barely a drop of sweat. Extraordinary.
I would imagine you want details of the day. How it went down. What she did. What she ate. When. Did she walk? How fast was she running? I don't want to steal her thunder. I'll let her share the details. And if she doesn't cover all of her awesomeness I'll fill in the spaces... : ) Until then, I will continue to try to process this insane weekend. One I will never forget. The gratitude I have for witnessing something so special is immeasurable. I am grateful to have a friend like her. To even just know a person like her.
If you haven't had a chance to donate, there's still time. Pop over to her website here. Whatever donation you can make will make a difference in the lives of the those that the Sojourner Center serves.
And one post can not cover this event, so don't mind me if a I babble on and on about it for awhile... : )