The Turn Around

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 (Lisa) 
The turn around point for the run for the Gulf Coast Triathlon was in St. Andrew's State Park. Not so coincidentally, so was our campsite! We knew we were destined to post ourselves right there. So we packed up the kids and chairs and our umbrella and set up shop. The thing is, it's a really good thing we did!! Pictured above is the turn around point. No people. No music. No water. No excitement. No celebration. 

Just a desolate windy stretch of hot asphalt surrounded by verdant sand dunes.

Reaching the turn around should be a triumph point. It marks the 'I'm half way there', the 'look how far I've come', the 'I've got this', the 'I'm headed home' in a race. This turn around does not say, "You're half way there, look how far you've come, you've got this, you're headed home!!" So Chris and I did!! Determined to make the athletes smile, we became the turn around point cheerleaders. 

Clapping, screaming, encouraging, and complimenting the racers became our only goal.

"Look at those quads busting out this run like it's nothing!"
"Hello Mr. Abs! Thank you for unzipping your tri top!"
"Are those sponges in your pocket or are you happy to see us!?"
"You got this, all day."
"Looking all kinds of sexy..."
Hooting, hollering, motivating, inspiring all those athletes!!...

We knew the athletes needed us there to cheer them on at their turn around point. It was hot and windy, a brutal day to race! But I was so anxious to meet a few of our friends at the finish line. It hurt to walk away from that spot. A flashback to my Army days, "...and quit my post only when properly relieved." I made a final decision for us and headed to the finish line. The unfortunate part of that decision, we were needed at that turn around point only to become irrelevant at the finish line. 

Sometimes you don't realize where you're needed in life until you've walked away.
The funny thing is, I think Chris knew this and let me make a decision so I could see it for myself. I'm not a religious person but I read once, "Sometimes God will give you exactly what you wanted just to show you it's not at all what you needed." I'm not comparing Chris to a God, but perhaps a good friend will also give you what you want to show you it's not what you need. 

My turn around point.