For the past four years, I’ve trained to become a world-class leader in the area of Boston Marathon cheering. My special talent is poster-design.
In 2006, two good friends, Katy and Dan, ran the Boston Marathon. Back then, I used only one piece of poster-board and one marker. It was amateur work, but it did the job! Katy and Dan loved their signs, along with the Easter Bunny, apparently!
In 2007, we cheered on our friend Stacey in the Boston Marathon. I was especially proud of my personally-designed foam-finger this year:
In 2008, our friends Julie, Brian and Guillaume ran the marathon. In addition to proper signage, I met Julie at the bottom of Heartbreak Hill and ran the last 7 miles with her. Our friend Dan (Marathon runner ’06) met us at Boston College and ran with us as well. Dan was especially awesome at getting all of Coolidge Corner and Kenmore Square chanting “Julie, Julie…” to help our friend Julie through the end of her long run.
Also in 2008, our friend Christine (aka “HotWheels”) ran Boston’s half marathon. My roommate, Jess and I made glittery collage signage and cheered Christine on to a successful finish! At one point during the race, I chased after Christine with one of her signs, hoping my silliness would distract her from any pain she may have been experiencing.
In 2009, my roommate Jess ran the Boston Marathon along with our friend, Dave. By now, the signage operation and cheer-gear collection reached its full potential. As Jess bound around the corner of Comm. Ave to turn onto Boylston for the final stretch, she smiled and waved. I was in awe of her, she had Herculean strength, yet a girlish sparkle in her eye.
As you can see, I take cheering VERY seriously and just don’t know what to do with myself this year. I would like to be on the side-lines cheering on the other three Wake Up Narcolepsy runners along with my friends running this year, Lexie and Julie (also from Marathon ’08).
Instead, I will probably have my head down most of the time, trying to concentrate on my step and avoid any possible cataplexy weakness. Two friends, Dan (from Marathon ’06 and ’08) and Ashley have offered to join me for the last few miles.
I’m SO looking forward to seeing them and my other supporters along the way. Although I’m still not sure I belong on this side of the Boston Marathon equation, my self-doubts hardly matter – as in a week’s time, I’ll be standing at a start line with 25,000 other people, proudly representing people with narcolepsy in the Boston Marathon 2010.