Thursday, October 19, 2006

Becoming Ironman Part 3: The Team

Well, since it's been two weeks I thought I'd throw in Part 3 as well. A Chapter for the Team.

If you haven't watched Parts 1 and 2 yet, do that first. Part 2 is the post just previous to this one, and has a link to Part 1 in it, or just scroll down a bit.

I realize you won't know who these people are, and I get that watching other peoples' home videos is kind of a lame way to spend some time. I know you can't know these people from a video, or an introduction, or through some of their frequent comments on the blog or my mentioning them. I know you don't know them.

But probably your life would be richer if you did.

By way of introduction, this is The Team. This is the army that descended on Madison in the days before Ironman and put together a race day strategy with military precision. These are the people who have been with me through more than Ironman could ever dish out. When I think M-Dot, you better believe I think of this crew. When I see this thing emblazoned now on my left shoulder, you better believe what it represents.

You'll be spending a lot of time with them for the rest of the video, so though they be strangers to you, I hope you enjoy the glimpse you get here of the people that got me across. I hope you enjoy getting to know a bit about them each and all.

Becoming Ironman Part 3: The Team

They were there. A long, long time ago, they were there. Hell, before I was here, they were there. When it was raising a son that would be my father, they were there.

When it was childish laughter, amusing adolescence, teenage angst and confusion. Abundant happiness and stupid, glorious joy. Summer days and football games and the Williston Coyotes and the Rapid City Thrillers. They were there.

When it was falling in love with their daughter, they were there. Starting my first job. Getting married. Falling down, getting up, and falling down again. They were there.

They were there when the tears tore and the world broke and God made a mistake. They were there when all hope. was lost.

They were.

You have to understand that its not their screams and cheers at even the least significant weekend triathlon during the Becoming that made us a Team. We've just been through so much is the thing.

And now, they were here. An arsenal. An army. They drove across the road, or twenty hours. They came, some of them not entirely aware yet just what for, but wanting to find out.

They spent their vacation time, they drove overnight, they carpooled. Whatever it took to get here.

They came to do heavy lifting. Not just to witness, but get into the filth of, the depth of, the thick of this thing. They were accustomed to the burden (it's been a long haul back to life), but this time was different. They came, shoulder to shoulder, for one last push out of the ruins. They came for the celebration afterwards. For the dawn. They came for the final forging of the Iron that they believed, long before I did, might exist within this Man.

Do you know, completely lacking dramatic effect, I owe them my life. They and those they represented who couldn't make the trip to Madison, but who stood by computers, sat on telephones, sent cards and wrote emails and sent seven minute hugs.

That was my Ironman. This was my Team. These are my Friends. This is what it came down to. Because 140.6 miles, the last of so so many traveled, is too far to go alone.


Flatman said...

You are truly one lucky cat...


RunIrisRun said...

Chris -
This is one of the coolest videos ever. So wishing I could have been there.

Anonymous said...

It's erin- watching this again. Heading to FL on 11/7 with the cd in tote so I can watch it with gma/gpa and mom and dad while I'm there. Love it! PS- I'm not a Mrs. I'm at Becky's...hence, the Mrs. Klinke. She's a teacher and uses blogspot for her class- how fun is that? Hipster teach, eh?nmcajtr

jbmmommy said...

Awesome, I've watched it twice just because it's so much fun. You've got an awesome crew there and your video's great. I don't know whether you coined the phrase but "because 140.6 is too far to go alone"- it gives me goosebumps. Looking foward to next chapters!