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I hope that most parents can say of their children what I am writing about my daughter, Sous Chef, on this, her 23rd birthday: she inspires me.
A quick detour from the main point: three years ago, Sous Chef challenged me to run a half marathon. I like a challenge and agreed to take part. She provided a training blue print, talked to me about her preparations and pushed me to race. She was positive, she was funny, she was inspiring as I pushed my then almost 50 year old legs and body to get into the kind of shape it takes to do something as stupid as running a Half.
Throughout the weeks leading up to the race, she would tell me “you have this, Dad” and “you can do it” and, when I would say my old body was falling apart, “you’re not old.” She flew into town from college for that Half and we raced and it was an incredibly special weekend, a moment in time I will forever treasure. She made this happen because she somehow knew how special this would be.
Last year, in the midst of COVID when everything was cancelled, when she had graduated college and had begun her “real life” and was in the midst of all that these challenges presented her, her spirit inspired us to put together a family half marathon which she, my niece and my brother-in-law ran. She made this happen with her force of will. COVID was not going to get her down.
This year, she started her campaign early. As soon as Denver announced that races like this could return, she got us on it right away, got us registered, got her truckers hat (well, I got it for her) and got us in gear. And another morning of memories was made.
That is what she is to me and to our family. Inspiring. She keeps us running… I would not have it any other way.
Happy Birthday to my favorite daughter. I love you, kid.