It has been about a year since I moved back to Indiana from Florida. I have been very reflective for the past few weeks. I do blame social media a little bit for the daily reminders of what I did one year ago, but I would still be reflective.
I do miss Florida, so much. I miss the sun and the heat. I miss Disney days with my friends, going to the parks or Downtown Disney. I miss going to the different malls, walking around with my friends. I miss the Florida running, the races, the park that I ran in all year. Most of all, I miss all of the wonderful people who became my second family. You see, when you live 1000 miles from your biological family, you have to create a family for yourself. That's what I did. I think that is what makes me the most "Floridasick". I made the most incredible friendships in Florida, and I miss them. I am so lucky to have met people who now live all over the country, and some who live in other countries. I will always be grateful for the people that I have met in Florida.
& I will always feel that Orlando and Disney is a part of me, my second home.
When I moved back home, I had this plan to stay for a few months, and then move again. I thought I could just pack up, find a good paying job, and be on my own again. I have always been interested in trying new things and new places, but it hasn't worked out that way. I've spent the last year learning, laughing, and gaining incredible experiences. I have a job that has introduced me to some new long lasting friends. I am grateful for that. I came to Indiana a little defeated, but with big goals and plans. I had very little self confidence and wasn't sure that I could stand on my own without my comfort zone that I had created for myself. I have grown exponentially in the past year. I am not the same girl that packed my car a year ago and drove from Orlando to Fort Wayne. I am stronger, more confident, and more adult than I was before. I believe in myself more than I did before, and I don't lean on my proverbial crutches or hide in my comfort zone nearly as much as I did before.
So, maybe I had a plan, a big intention to do huge things and move to someplace and have a big adventure. Maybe that didn't happen, but I've still had my own adventure in a different way. I've grown and changed.
I think that's something.
I'm about two and a half weeks out from the Chicago Marathon. Whoa. I've raised $1510 for the Alzheimer's Association. I'm so thankful for my friends and my family members for their donations and for their support. I want to hug them all, but, like I said before, they live all over the country. I'm so grateful.
I really want to PR this year. I also hit a new PR last year... I'm not sure that I'm where I want to be, but I don't know if I think that because I'm nervous or if I'm just not as prepared as I want. I've worked really hard this year, but I could always improve. But then again, maybe I'm too hard on myself, I'm not sure.
Anyways, this is a big thing for me to be running for Alzheimer's and to have raised so much money. I'm so thankful. I think that will make this race experience different than races that I've run before, just because I'll be doing this for other people rather than for myself. I have a lot of emotions going into it.
I've run marathons before, many half marathons. I still have so much work to do to get where I want to be. I just think that this experience is going to feel different, because with the fundraising, with thinking about Alzheimer's, and with running for something bigger than myself, I've changed my perspective quite a bit. I'm in the gym or running nearly every day, sometimes I'm doing both. I hope that the work that I have put in comes back during the race.