Today was one of the most beautiful yet toughest day!!
I woke up on time this time and felt pretty good and ready for the departure at midnight. First, we had to take a bus ride to the start line. It was a long ride going through the city and for the first time, I saw the hard life of Haiti, with police arresting people, and security with a shotgun. At one point, I was looked through the window and saw a man who has been arrested. He looked right at me (at least, I think) and saw myself!!
We arrived at the start line, and the sky was so clear that you could see all the stars and the moon really clearly. It was just beautiful, but the race didn’t start like this for me!!
SEND OFF!! One mile in, my stomach was acting up and I had no idea what was going on. 3 miles in, I had to go in the bushes!! It was the most horrible feeling, slowing down my teammates because this time, we were running in groups. Luckily, my team supported me all the way, and I was back in, running and feeling good again. Unfortunately, it wasn’t over, it was happening every 15-20 mins!!! I wasn’t happy with myself and I was frustrated, almost thinking, “I am done!” But I had to remember WHY I am doing it!! One more day, one more run!! Dr. Sean was there to fix me up, but it wasn’t until mile 18 when I started to feel better, and it was time to start the run!! Time was against me, and I had to make the cut off time!! It was right in time for the endless hill, the incline felt like it would never stop and the sun was beating down hard, so I had to run and power walk the hell of it!! At this point, my knee was done and my body was really weak due to the morning, but I had to finish and had no choice. I didn’t go this far to be done now.
MILE BY MILE, STATION BY STATION, and I was getting closer to my goal, as I could smell the ocean. I arrived to one station and the crew told me, “MK, you have 4 miles!!” At this time, I needed to bring it home for all of US!! The LA running community, my family worldwide, and Haiti!!
I looked at my teammates I was running with for awhile and they pushed me, and we said “let’s get it!!” The sun was blasting, it was a busy town, and cars/everything was moving. Our guide said, “Yeah MK, turn left and right at the end of the road!” And we saw the finish line!
I was full of emotions! The closer I got I saw my KRC/Movement family and of course, the beautiful ocean, so I started smiling. I crossed the finish line, went on my knees, and kissed the ground to say thank you to Haiti. Haiti you are so beautiful! It’s hard to see you suffer and in pain, but you are always shining, because your people do! It’s just temporary :) You are strong and I know you will never give up!! I learnt a lot from you and about myself for the last 8 days!!
THANK YOU HAITI, and until the next time, POU AYITI!
Number 24 OUT :)
This day was something else. After fighting mosquitoes all night, no ac so the room was extremely hot, I didn’t sleep much. But it was time to go for 20 miles.
As soon as we lined up and were ready to go... my knee wasn’t having it so had to walk right away.
After 15 minutes, I was by myself, pitch black with nobody behind me and couldn’t see anyone in front of me. So I started power walking, then jogging to get my knee warmed up so I could run then started running. Started to catch up and felt better not being alone.
Arriving to the first 10k station my knee was on fire but I had to go, so I had to run limping to the next station. I was alone for a long period of time, so I had time to do a lot of reflecting and thinking and find a way to keep me going!! Won’t stop and cannot stop. Downhills were a “No No” for my knee so I had to push it in every up hill!! So I did!
The last 5k was intense due to a huge downhill and of course a great hill!!
I had to give it all I got to see my team at the finish line and what a blessing seeing them!!
One more day done and two more to go. Thankful for the support squad that is here to keep us going!!
Number 24 out :)
I wasn’t ready physically and mentally to make this run due to my condition the day prior... left knee wasn’t operating!! Went to see the doctors twice that day... they tell me you got this !! Went to bed kinda anxious about it.
3am—time to wake up and get dressed up for the run. Today was my Nike day appreciation... my knee was still an issues while walking down to the breakfast so extra worried but like Nike just do it!
We started running around 4am and of course 0.01 miles my knee is not having it!! I don’t want to curse here but a lot came through my mind lol, the person who I run with got some heavy issues too but we couldn’t just let it go. Then I started to say to myself “you are here for reason so let’s get it” and I was out there helping my crew and mostly running with them, blessed to run with krc, movements and Philly family, all together. We start together we finish together!!
At the last three miles, in the middle of a busy town called Gonaives, I looked on my left and I saw a little boy, 8 years old, who was following me and looking at me so I asked for his name. He said, “Sylvain is my name.” Then I said, “You want to run?” He said, “Yes!!” We started talking in French together. He opened up to me about the lost of his mother... we looked at each other, understood each other. We started running together then I took the lead with Duy, and he was looking behind to see if I was still there!!
The last 0.5 miles, we all finished together including Sylvain in the middle, pain or not... all the west side crew together... I froze for a second, looked around and was so thankful for my running community. One of the Philadelphia crew (by the way, strong and amazing women!!), was in pain and finished it strong!!! We made her the congratulations tunnel :) (hopefully we have a picture for you because I don’t know the word for it so I created this one lol).
At the end, with some water and gummy bears... Sylvain approaches me and say “Merci”... and I said “Thank you to you not me, it was a blessing to share that run with you!!” He smiled at me and said, “You right!!” We laughed .
Now on my bed, bandaged like a mummy with ice everywhere lol, trying to get ready for tomorrow!! But I want to finish by saying no matter where you are from, which color you are, rich or poor... know your worth like Sylvain and keep reaching for the impossible!!
Number 24 , OUT!!