I took the above photo on the Brooklyn Bridge while on a run in January of 2012. I must have run by this sign many times before I ever noticed it. I thought this photo would be part of a post I’d write about my half marathon training but that isn’t meant to be for me right now.
However, I’m not without inspiration in my life. Today I was reminded in two different ways.
After reading her book less than a month ago, I profiled the amazing Julie Flygare (narcolepsy advocate and runner on my blog (here). I found Julie and her story so inspirational, I reached out to someone else I admire, Erica Sara (a runner and jewelry designer - among other things) of Erica Sara Designs to nominate Julie for ESD’s Inspiration of the Month. Today I learned that Julie won.
Erica Sara Designs did a lovely feature article (here) to profile Julie. When I read the post, it made me feel that there was good in the world. I loved that there were good, smart women not only supporting each other (we women are not known for doing that) but making concerted efforts to give outside of themselves. It touched me and I couldn’t help but cry some happy tears – this was like watching a personal mission statement come true.
About two hours later, my happy balloon was pinpricked when I learned that one of my favorite teachers from high school, AK, had passed away. I found myself crying again. Uncontrollably. In a parking lot. I’m an emotional person but crying twice in one day is not the norm for me.
AK was ridiculously smart, witty, compassionate and dedicated – a rare combination of traits in anyone much less yet an high school teacher in Queens, NY. AK was strict but treated his students with a type of respect that I’ve found rare even in my adult life.
A Facebook tribute page to AK was created and even though I added a post, I’m not sure I can fully express what his impact was on me. AK certainly was inspirational. He was an early example in my life of what “smart and heart” could be.
Thank you Julie, the Erica Sara team and AK for reminding me that people do embody the principle of what it is like to “be the inspiration”. In the words of AK who always said (after a sneeze), “A blessing on your face”.