That even though you’ve been on the sidelines for the past year of training, where you’ve pretty much been an onlooker at the amazing sense of commitment and drive of your Ironman-to-be, your involvement is huge.
That every minute of the race is rife with worry and excitement at overwhelming levels. That even though you try to make the most of this ‘alone time’ you’ve been looking forward to – you are constantly aware that your athlete is competing in the race of a lifetime. His thoughts, his emotions, his anxieties consume you.
You track his every move, as if by so doing, it will make it easier for your athlete – that you are right there with them – you can do this together. But you’re not…. You are here and he is there, and the melodramatic side of you thinks he’s fighting for his life. His pain you cannot fathom. His stress unimaginable, and his anxiety – probably just as intense as yours.
You message your family and say you’re ok. The Pinot Grigio is cold and refreshing, the cool breeze is putting you to sleep – you are relaxed and unconcerned. Far from the truth.
What you really want to say is that your third glass of wine is calming your nerves. You’ve chatted with hundreds of supporters just to get some stress off your chest. You’ve asked different people the same question over and over, just to have some sort of conversation hoping that they too are just as anxious as you are – and you are consoled that indeed they are.
This is a big deal !!!
It’s ok to want to cry when the damn tracker says he should be out of the water and he’s not. It’s ok to want to cry when the damn tracker estimates his finish time as longer than expected. It’s ok when the damn damn tracker stops working and you want to attack every volunteer that ever existed. It’s ok when he finishes each leg with a smile and you were worried sick. It’s even ok that the sweet waitress senses your stress and checks in on you more than anyone else with the concern of a best friend.
It is all ok because you, too, are running the race of your lifetime. You have a vested interest in the outcome of this race.
You. Are. An. IronSupporter.