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100m Dash

Posted in Many Paths Many Voices

Sweat gleaming, glistening
Bending over
Struggling for breath

The announcer
The 100m dash is over
But a new race is about to begin
Startled, I hear my voice over the loud speaker

“Take your positions!”
No choice
But to walk my tired body to the new start line
“Excuse me. What race is this one?” I ask

“It’s a marathon, over varied terrain.
You won’t know what’s ahead of you until you get there.
Are you ready?”
Hell no!!!!!

Too late.
My name has been called.
I must run this race
Prepared, or not

The bell clangs
I start to run
Battling fears and thoughts in my head
How can I run a marathon, when I’ve just finished a sprint?

Who said I was good enough for this?
Who thought I had capacity for this?
Why have I been chosen
To run this race?

There must be some mistake
I don’t have the skill level for this
Others around me
Pushing ahead and pushing through

“You can do it!” They encourage
“We’ve been there! You can do this race!”
Who to believe?
Fear and anxiety jostle each other

But it doesn’t matter how I feel
I have a race to run.

© Karen Loo 2021

100m Dash refers to how I felt when I found out at 14 weeks pregnant with our second child that we were having a child with Downs Syndrome who had four heart abnormalities. I felt like I had struggled raising a normal child, let alone the mountain of what was ahead of me now with special needs.