Let’s get it Started!

As I thought about my upcoming 40th birthday, of course i thought of how to celebrate. First of all, 40 is and has been a significant number because when i think of 40, i think that’s how old my mom was when she died. So, here I am…just 4 months away from being that same age. To me, that is just crazy. Wild. Weird.

She died on a late Sunday morning while we were driving home from a fishing trip. A peaceful Sunday along Hwy 580 near Castro Valley turned deathly silent after the crash, boom, and bang of the multi-car pile-up.

I got pretty well banged up in the accident. After 6 weeks in the hospital & another month or so in a full body cast, I literally learned how to walk again. I’ll never forget those first moments of taking steps on my own. Man, what a THRILL!! There I was in grandma’s living room, wearing my blue & bright pink pajamas, gingerly putting one foot in front of the other. I was walking again and I felt free.

I’m a runner. I have to tell the story above because I continue to feel much gratitude that I can run. I listen to folks all the time of all sizes, shapes, & ages tell me how they wish they could run, but cannot because of knee problems, back problems, etc… So, it is never lost on me how lucky I am. Every day.

So…what the hell does all this have to do with turning 40 and a birthday…?  Well, after many thoughts and ideas about how, when, and where I would celebrate,  I made a decision. I have decided to go back to where it all kinda began for me; San Leandro, CA. Even though I was born in San Francisco, most of my childhood memories are from days spent in San Leandro. To commemorate my 40th year, I have decided to run 40 miles starting in San Leandro at the address of where I grew up and go from there. I recently mentioned my idea to a friend and her response was: “wouldn’t you want to do something more fun?” – I think my response was: “well, i want to do something meaningful and this is meaningful.” And I actually think it will be fun….fun because my hope is that many of my friends will come out and support me at some point during the day, fun because it will be like some big trip down memory lane — and although some of those memories are difficult, they contributed to who i am and for that, i give thanks.

This will be a run of celebration. A celebration and reflection of 40 years and pay tribute to those people and places who have been with me along the way.

There will be many people to thank that day, including mom, for without her, September 25, 1970, would not have been possible.

I hope you will follow me as I train and plan for the celebration. Cheers!!!

13 Responses to “Let’s get it Started!”

  1. Karen Kopping (Decker) Says:

    Best of luck to you. I know you will have no problem doing this.

  2. Heart-touching story, A. I hope to make it down to help you celebrate.

  3. Run on girl

  4. Wow. You’re awesome!

  5. what a touching story and cool idea! i’ll even see what i can do to come up and join or cheer you on. looking forward to reading more about it.

  6. I can’t of a better way to celebrate your birthday and pay tribute to your mom. I look forward to watching your journey unfold!! Love you 🙂

  7. I forgot think…I can’t think of a better way….

  8. afuntanilla Says:

    thanks so much everyone for the wonderful comments. If you can, I hope any and all of you will come and share part of the journey with me. Seriously!!

  9. thx for sharing babe…i’ll never complain about my walking or running workout again! C*O*N*G*R*A*T*S on the way you chose to C*E*L*E*B*R*A*T*E your 40th! i’ll be there with you on your run, somehwhere along the route! C*H*E*E*R*S!!! ☮♡☺xo♥♀♀

  10. Alberto Says:

    That’s a great way to celebrate life and your mom. Wish you the very best in training and look forward to reading the journey leading up to it.

  11. Husband Says:

    I’ll be there!!!

  12. I’m there – you tell me where – I would run with you, but I think you would FULLY kick my A$$! YOU SOOOOO ROCK Ang! Proud of you!

  13. That is a very cool thing to do on your birthday, which was just a few days ago. Happy belated birthday.

    I am so familiar with that area as I had lived in Hayward for a few years.

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