I remember my first sprint triathlon.
When the gun went off for my heat, I took off swimming, but the excitement and adrenaline overtook me, and before I reached the first buoy, I found myself gasping for breath, sputtering on swallowed water, out of rhythm and fearing I had made a mistake. Somehow I managed to self-talk my way to a smooth stroke and patterned breathing, and came out of the water with a respectable time.
The biking was the easiest leg of the race. Despite one very long, tough hill, I found myself enjoying pounding the pedals and zooming through the countryside.
But... when I jumped off my bike and started the final part --the run -- I knew I was in trouble. I was still out of breath from riding, and the second I stepped down on my left ankle, pain shot through my leg. (This is the same ankle that's being surgically replaced next month.)
A friend of mine was standing along the route to cheer me on. I pointed to my ankle, shook my head a little and winced. My friend shouted, "Just keep putting one foot in front of the other."
I ran and I jogged, and then I jogged more slowly. Every step felt like a knife stabbing into my ankle bone. By the halfway mark, I had slowed to a walk and wondered if I would be able to finish the race.
And then something wonderful happened. My sister caught up to me. She had entered the race to support me, but had struggled with the swim, as she had never been a strong swimmer. She was running like a boss, but when she came upon me, she asked, "Do you want me to stay with you?" And she did.
We walked the rest of the race. The last few blocks, the friend who had encouraged me earlier stepped out onto the road from the sidelines and walked with us. I was flanked on both sides when the finish line came into sight.
Rebecca and I completed the race -- the very last two to finish. And when we came to the finish line, my sister said, "Jaye -- you step over first. This is your race." And that is why on my very first sprint triathlon, with an ankle on fire, I was spared from finishing dead last.
In some ways, this Kickstarter has reminded me of that first race. Lots of preparation, anxiety and excitement, and having to learn during the race what we should have done, how we can adjust, and what the course looks like. And just like the triathlon, we have been cheered on and joined by others who have uplifted us and kept us going. Thank you so much to all of you who have backed us and offered financial and emotional support.
We can now see the finish line and with gratefulness and humility, are asking our friends, family and fans to help us walk across the line. We have three days left -- our campaign ends just after midnight on March 31st. Please take a moment to become a backer.
Here's the link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/523418024/starfish-planners?ref=nav_search
Many, many thanks.