Support is a strange thing. I need it just like anyone else needs it. No matter what you're doing - running, going to school, living life - without support, things get complicated quickly.
I could not be the runner I am today without having had support from my running club, the Lopers; from my running friends I met with the Lopers; from the countless, nameless people who have helped out during all the races I've ever ran; and of course from all of you blog readers who take time every, uh, day/week/once-in-a-while to read my blog and peruse my thoughts.
The one person who has supported me the most has been Mrs. LB. Now, she hasn't pushed me to do all the races I've done; she's helped keep me grounded and has helped temper my zeal because otherwise I would probably have signed up for more races than I've run and that may have been a bad idea. But she supports me and I know that if I sign up for a race, she'll be behind me.
But the rest of my family... well, not so much. This actually sounds more harsh than it is, but that's the truth. Not so much. I mean, they all realize how much I run and how running has helped me do certain things previously thought impossible. But Mrs. LB has been the only one in my extended family even that has been to my races. She hasn't been at all of them but she's been to at least one of my 5Ks, 10Ks, half marathons and has been to all of my marathons.
My brother Jesse was at my last race, at the Diamond Valley Lake Marathon. He jumped at the chance to go with us to the race and was cheering me and other runners on, supporting his brother and the random strange runner in front of him as well. And that was great, knowing he was in my corner and supportive of my racing.
Now, I'm not necessarily complaining. I'm not having a sob-fest here, nor do I want to change the name of my blog to Weepy Runner. But I do find it a bit curious that there's been such little interest in just going out to one of my races. Distance running is such a difficult thing, and if all it takes to support me and my efforts during a race is just showing up, why hasn't anybody done that?
I've seen fellow runners' race pictures, mostly on FB, of races and some of them have this huge contingent of people out there with them, supporting them, cheering them on with signs and such.
Now, I get why some races wouldn't be that fun to attend. Crowds, traffic, the time commitment involved. A race-viewing experience that consists of an hours-long wait to get one glimpse at a loved one and swim upstream amongst the other salmon to find them after the race doesn't seem so appealing. I understand that, and in fact I've told and will continue to tell Mrs. LB not to go to certain races, such as the Camp Pendleton Mud Run, because it would be a big hassle for her to go - the only exception is my marathons; she's stuck having to support me at my marathons whether she likes it or not :)
As with everything, it sounds a bit rough in writing. "My family doesn't support me - waaaa!" Look, they support me, they back me because they are my family and they love me (I think, I hope, maybe not if they read this...). But I'm just struck at the disparity in the support some runners get and others don't.