Today is my birthday. My 31st birthday, to be exact.
Last week, I decided I wanted to write something about today. I wanted to write about the Boston Marathon bombing a year ago today, on the same day I turned 30. I had a whole post written out in my head and it was really good. Unfortunately, I didn’t write this post then, when I was thinking about it, and now I don’t remember any of it. I sat down to try to put some words together, but, honestly, I can’t find the right ones.
I always get really upset at myself for this, it feels selfish and self-centered, but it’s weird sharing my birthday with something like this. I always thought about what it must feel like to have your birthday be on a day that will be remembered for something horrible. While I’ve always shared my birthday with tax day, I hardly found that horrible. More comical than anything really, especially considering I write software to calculate the taxes taken out of your paycheck for a living. Ironic, right? At least in the Alanis Morissette sense of the word. I used to have a friend who was born on 9⁄11. I remember thinking “damn, that’s gotta be rough.” You just want to have a nice, enjoyable day, but everyone else is thinking about something else. I guess it’s just something you get used to? I don’t know. Right now, I’ve got a good balance going between “Yay! Birthday!” and remembering what happened.
The evening of the bombing, I decided I just had to go out and run. In the running community, this is what we do, right? We run. I was injured, but getting ready to start thinking about running again. I decided that would be the day. I needed to be out there. Does that count as solidarity? I’m not sure, but I just wanted to
stand run with my community. My run wasn’t great, what with having not run in seven weeks and all, but it felt good to be out there. I decided that this would be something I would do every year on my birthday, run in memory.
This morning, I got up and did a quick four miles before work. Very different from last year’s run. I’m now tapering for the New Jersey Marathon and I’m probably the strongest (though, not fastest) runner I’ve ever been, much different from the me coming back from an injury. I thought a lot about last year’s run and that day. I’d put the emotions at “conflicted,” but I was glad I rolled myself out of bed at 5:15 this morning to make it happen.
The running community is very strong and extremely supportive. Everything for the last year has shown this in so many ways. This is a community I’m intensely proud to be a part of. I really don’t know what else to say about it right now. I wish I still had those words I had a few days ago, but they’re lost forever. Simply, runners are awesome, strong, and supportive. We’re a good bunch of people.
Moving on from that and to something completely different, I can’t believe my 30th year is over. Besides being one of those milestone years, it was also an extremely pivotal year for me. My life changed a lot over the last twelve months. I’ve now been on hormones for a year and have been living my life as me full time for almost six months now. I started 30 going by Andy to all but my closer friends and immediate family, now the world knows me as Amelia. While plenty of other things happened over the last year, this is by far the biggest. 30 was a good year, but I think 31 might be able to give it a run for its money.