Is it me, or am I smiling in this picture?  In it, I’ve just crossed the South 1st Street bridge onto Cesar Chavez Boulevard nearly 8 miles into the Austin Half Marathon.  When I think back to the run, I can remember this and I was smiling.  I felt good throughout this run last Sunday and no doubt ran past the countless spectators with a goofy smile for much of the 13 miles.  I find it remarkable for the contrast with the suffering I endured in the 2011 Austin Marathon.

I wouldn’t have noticed my expression in the picture or remembered the run in quite the same way yesterday.  Calling EMS for my mom and spending 7 hours in ER helplessly watching her fragility left me in a fathomless depth of despair.  If I tightened my lips it was not to smile but to hold back tears.  I was as close to darkness as my mom.  And so her heart’s dramatic return to a normal rate today and seemingly complete recovery has me feeling beyond relief.  After the entire day, I have a goofy smile on my face.  I saw this picture on my hard drive looking for something to blog and immediately understood it was a reflection of my current grin.  What a roller coaster.  I changed my flight home tomorrow to spend another week here.  I’m going to enjoy and make the most of this coming week.