My race report was all about me. That was so wrong.
My good friend and pacer Deborah flew to CA from Texas to help me, and she never got to run. We've had fun spending time together, but my race took her away from her family for days. I'll try to make it up to her tomorrow by taking her to an amazing record store (yeah, I'm old enough to call them record stores) in Sacramento tomorrow.
My friend Jim drove from the Bay area to help, and we had a great time together, but he still hasn't seen me cross that finish line. He had agreed to be a back-up pacer for the last 6.7 miles if needed. I've run more miles in my life with Jim than anyone else and he paced me in my first 50 miler.
The first ultra I ever mentioned to my dad was Western States. He traveled from PA to help crew and see me cross that finish line. He sat with me in the stands this morning as the later finishers crossed the line. He made a comment something like "This is about when you would have been coming in, right?" He meant it in a positive way, but it really hurt to be reminded that I had failed to finish. Yet, he wasn't being negative at all. He believes I'll finish this race some day and he intends to be there when I do.
My children were all set to crew for me as long as they could stay awake. I've had a wonderful trip with them.
And lastly, my wife has been there for me. As I tried to apologize to her after the race, for putting her through so much with nothing to show for it, she was only concerned about my disappointment. She was prepared to pace me from Green Gate to Highway 49 if necessary and she's never run at night in her life. She's supported my running obsession for 24+ years, and attended ultras with me for the past 15 years.
I'm very lucky to have these friends and family members in my life.