When I met him, he had run a marathon and was training for a triathalon. And after we got married, he continued to run despite knee surgery and a bad back. Nothing serious, nothing dependable. Just on and off -- the same way he played basketball and baseball, and the same way he golfed, skiied, climbed, rode and surfed. It was all now and again. He was sporty but he wasn't consistent. Life got in the way and he did less and less.
And then a friends husband, in his 40s, had a heart attack. Just (with a snap of the fingers} like that. And it was months later, my husband began to run again. Not a lot but routinely. Another friend's husband also in his late 40s, began to run, too.
You both should run a 10 k, I said, excitedly. Maybe we will, they replied.
My son watched his sister -- a girl who tried out for every sport and made every team. A girl who rode a horse year-round. With his headphones on, my son mostly looked away. A little surfing, some skateboard camp, a week or two of track. But that was it, really.
Three days before the Marrakech Marathon was to begin, my husband and his friend registered to run the half-marathon.
The night before the Marrakech Marathon was to begin, my son said, I'm going to run it, too.
And so they showed up that morning with thousands of others.
My husband and his friend ran. They ran fast.
My son, wearing sweatpants and fake Converse shoes ran too. And he finished, too, ahead of hundreds of others.