Week nineteen, day four
Have you ever felt like a fraud? Not like a Bernie Madoff fraud (although if you stole millions of dollars from people in a Ponzi scheme, you are definitely on Santa’s naughty list). No, I mean the feeling that at any moment, everyone will discover that you do not belong and you have been faking it.
I’ve mentioned before how much I loved law school, and how getting into Yale was all I had ever wanted throughout college. But after I graduated from A&M, I started to worry about it. By the time I got on the plane to New Haven, I was convinced that I would show up and they would tell me they had sent the wrong letter. Or that within the first week of classes, my professors would sigh at my questions and my (much more brilliant) classmates would whisper behind their hands, “what’s she doing here?”
Wednesday night at the Jingle Bell Run, I had the worst run I have had in a year. I don’t know if it was the weather, the charley horse, or just a fluke but I stumbled across the finish line five full minutes slower than my Turkey Trot time and feeling like I couldn’t take another step. Yesterday, I got an email from Disney reminding me that the race is three weeks from today. I freaked out. By the time we left Sibi’s going away party last night, I was teary-eyed, telling Tony, “I can’t do it. What was I thinking? Everyone has supported me and is counting on me and there’s no way I can run a half-marathon!” His logical and sweet answers did nothing to dispel my fear. You can’t outlogic or outlove that little voice that tells you you’re really not good enough. I had 13 miles on my schedule today and I just knew I probably couldn’t even run 5.
My Yale degree is currently in my garage, and in the 20 years I’ve had it, no one has come to take it back. And when I got to the lake this morning, Mark was there to run the loop with me. Okay, I’ll try to do nine, but I’m still thinking there’s no way. But I did do 9. And then I decided to run 2 more with Mark. I didn’t do 13…but I did 11. And that was good enough, because it was good enough to shut up that stupid voice. And three weeks from now, when I’m holding my finisher’s medal, I’ll know that the only person who ever doubted me, was me…and that I was wrong.