Reflection Title: #GirlDad
Book – My Year of Running Dangerously: A Dad, a Daughter, and a Ridiculous Plan by Tom Foreman
As a journalist whose career spans three decades, CNN correspondent Tom Foreman has reported from the heart of war zones, riots, and natural disasters. He has interviewed serial killers and been in the line of fire. But the most terrifying moment of his life didn't occur on the job - it occurred at home, when his 18-year-old daughter asked, "How would you feel about running a marathon with me?" My Year of Running Dangerously is Foreman's journey through four half marathons, three marathons, and one 55-mile race. What started as an innocent request from his daughter quickly turned into a rekindled passion for long-distance running - for the training, the camaraderie, the defeats, and the victories. Told with honesty and humor, Foreman's account captures the universal fears of aging and failure alongside the hard-won moments of triumph, tenacity, and going further than you ever thought possible.
I’ve never been more nervous to select a book to read than I was to select this book for reflection 364.
Normally, I don’t even think twice about the choice. If the title sounds interesting, Emilia and I begin and don’t look back, but this one was way different. This book choice is technically my last new book selection and read for this Year of Magical Learning adventure. 364 and not 365 you ask? That’s correct. I’ve known what the final book and final reflection will be since the first day I started writing this adventure; stay tuned as you will find out tomorrow…don’t you dare turn the page to look .
Because I’ve always known what the finish will be, that left this selection as my technical last unread book of the journey, and I had to get it right. As soon as I finished In a Sunburned Country, I could feel my heart pounding and my mind begin to race as I tried to imagine the perfect book. Should it be a comedy, should it be in the self help genre, should it be a exploration into science, humanity, a memoir, something epically long, etc. I thought of so many scenarios and nothing felt right. I begin scouring my anti-library for the right last selection. I went through every single page of my wish list that had 500 books saved on it, and nothing seemed right. I asked my wife what to read…no help. I asked Trieu what to read…no help. Don’t get me wrong, they gave some advice, but I knew their suggestions weren’t right because this wasn’t their journey. This was all on Emilia and me to figure this one out and I was sweating.
I was so nervous as I poured through book after book searching for the right one. I’m not kidding, I was frantically worried that I would make the wrong selection and I couldn’t figure out what to do. I kept thinking to myself, “I have to get this right for Emilia and I have to get this right to honor this journey that we’ve taken together. This needs to be the perfect book that sums everything up perfectly.” I was sweating and starting to get nervous that this perfect book wasn’t out there.
And then, just like we started this journey with the reflection from The Alchemist of when you want something, the whole universe conspires to make it happen. Magically, I found myself taking a break from scrolling through page after page and ended up clicking on my unroll.me app for some reason. Unroll.me is this email service that I use where you can unsubscribe to emails with the touch of a button and then roll up any promotions you get into one email that will bypass your inbox and keep all the junk out. It’s a great service, and it is free, but I never look at it. It has probably been 6 months since I’ve looked at my roll up email that comes through their app with all the stupid promotions that retail vendors send my way that I decided to not unsubscribe from. I don’t know how I ended up on there, but the first promotion I saw was from Audible, and it said they were having a 50% off sale. I thought, let’s take a look and see what they have and maybe I can find some good deals to buy for the next, next read once YOML is concluded.
I’m scrolling through page after page after page of this audible promotion with hundreds of titles, and I bought a few interesting titles that I planned to listen to later. All the sudden I stumbled upon a photo of a book cover with some old running shoes and the title My Year of Running Dangerously by the author Tom Foreman. I don’t have any idea who that is or what this book was about, but Emilia and I run together every day and I thought to myself, maybe this is the one? So, I clicked on the description to learn more. I discovered that this story is about a father and a daughter running a marathon together and I couldn’t believe it. I said, thank you universe, downloaded the book, and here we are wrapping up reflection 364 after finishing our last book together.
I mean, can you have a more perfect book than this to finish it off this epic adventure? A story about a father and a daughter that run a marathon together and all the lessons they learned along the way. I thought the same thing and immediately was ready to dive in. The book didn’t disappoint and many a times I had to hold back tears as I listened to how Tom and his daughter Ronnie set out on an adventure together that ultimately transformed both of their lives and brought them closer together.
I’ve regularly referred to and compared YOML to a marathon because that is what it is. There is no better way to describe a journey that has taken 3 full years, 286 completed books, almost 297,546 of written words and nearly 2,000 hours of knowledge consumption. If that isn’t a marathon, then I don’t know what is. However, not one single minute of this adventure has ever felt like a chore because I’ve always had a running mate right next to me smiling, laughing, and having a great time as we navigated our way through this epic journey in Emilia. YOML is our father and daughter marathon that we completed together, and I’ve never been prouder in my life than anything else I’ve ever done, and I’m serious about that.
Tom’s daughter, Ronnie, was the reason that his journey of finding joy in life again was reborn and it changed the course of his life as he rediscovered his love for running. I know without a doubt that I can say the same thing about my amazing daughter, Emilia.
I run for her, and I will be running for her for the rest of my days on my quest to live for 2 in all that I do.
Daughters are truly incredible, and I’ve never been prouder in my life to say that I’m a #GirlDad!
I don’t know what our next adventure is together, but I know that we’ll have a blast finding it together.
Question: Who do you run for?
What is The Year of Magical Learning? - An Introduction
YOML Podcast Discussion - Coming Soon
YOML Bookstore - My Year of Running Dangerously by Tom Foreman