Heartbreak in Boston

Oh, it’s so hard to know what to say about this. All the fine folk who went out running today, whose goal was to test their own spirit and endurance, and who now find themselves facing tests they never imagined when the day began. All the men and women and children who went out to cheer on friends and family and strangers, and who found themselves screaming instead.

Does this one hit home more because it’s an endurance athletic event that was targeted, something that sits very close to my own heart even though I’m not a runner? I thought so at first, but now I’m not so sure. What hits home is that no-one should ever set out for a run on a fine spring morning and have their day end in fire and smoke and anguish. No-one should embark on a perfectly ordinary morning commute and find themselves haunted and howling in the bloodied wreckage of a train. No-one should take their seat at their work desk only to have passenger planes turn into weapons and rain fire down upon them from the sky. Innocent people should not be hurt. Human beings should not do this to one another.

And then there are the people who ran into the smoke instead of away from it, the first responders, the Boston families and businesses that opened up and offered whatever help was needed. That’s what I want to remember about this. Not the pointless hatred that inflicted such needless suffering on innocent people, but the kindness and bravery of strangers. I wish more than anything that such a tragedy would never happen again. But I don’t believe that will be true in my lifetime, if ever. So for now I just wish that in the wake of such unspeakable horror, goodness prevails the way it did today.

My heart goes out to all of them, every one, the runners who ran and ran and ran and in a moment that should have been glorious, found only chaos and pain beyond imagining.

2 thoughts on “Heartbreak in Boston

  1. Justin

    I hear you, and I feel you. I was shocked, outraged and angry all at once. Getting ready for the Vancouver BMO marathon in a few weeks, and I could identify with the months of discipline and focus they have put in. With the effort and pain they go through after running 42km. and then moments from the finish line, some of them lose both legs at the knees. I am so sad for those people that were hurt.
    I have read a lot of chatter on the net about the fact that people ran towards the smoke right away, and I totally agree that is an uplifting thing. And I read about people drawing parallels about attacks in the middle east where children are killed, and of course, that is unforgivable also.
    I think you say it right when you say – the thing I feel the most about, is the thing I identify with the most. For me that’s the runners. I don’t think I will have much else on my mind for most of those 4 hours I am running on the 5th.

  2. Kay Post author

    Thanks for sharing these thoughts, Justin. I think it’s really hard, as an athlete (even just an eager amateur like me), not to feel this one like a punch in the gut. It’s no less horrifying than any mindless attack that takes lives, but it feels closer to home.

    Props to you and all the other runners who are taking part on the 5th. My partner ran the BMO Marathon a couple of years ago and I’m in awe of the dedication that goes into preparing for these events.


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