My Superpower!

My Superpower!

Apr 16, 2024

Two winters ago, I stopped by my Grandparent’s house for lunch with Michael and our friend who was visiting from out of town.

“Do you have any fun childhood stories about Kristen?” my friend asked Grandma.

“Kristen was so funny. We would go to her dance recitals, gymnastics shows, and soccer games, and she was terrible.” Grandma teased. “Afterwards, we would ask, hesitantly, “How are you? How did you do?” Beaming, she would announce, “That was so much fun! I did great!”’

4th of July, 2012, I ran the Firecracker 5k. My mom and I used to jog together on weekends and occasionally on weekday evenings. After bundling up in a hat and placing our iPods in our armbands, we’d be off—slowly. Sometimes, we would listen to music (my mom liked to run to Dog Days Are Over by Florence and the Machine). On other days, we would chat between shallow inhalations.

We showcased our hard work at holiday 5ks—the turkey trot, the hot chocolate run, the Firecracker 5k.

4th of July, 2012, my mom and I ran the firecracker 5k. My cousin Brendan, who is nine days younger than me and grew up down the road, ran with my dad. 

When people start to line up at the starting line, we make our way to the middle of the pack. My dad always used to say that the first mile was the hardest, so I prepared myself to push through it. We run.

By the end of the first mile, my breath has leveled out, and my feet feel lighter. My mom and I forge ahead.

We pass the mile two markers, and up ahead, we see two people running in the wrong direction.

“Fools,” I think out loud. Until I realize it’s Brendan and Dad! They had finished—and turned right around to finish it again, together.

I loved running those 5ks. I’m not sure that my mom and I ever reached our goal of beating the 30-minute mark, but I loved our runs just the same. 

“You’re so lucky,” my dad once told me. “Being happy comes so easy to you.”

“It’s your superpower.”

“That sucks,” I thought to myself...

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