Here in Baltimore, we have a Dr. Dre and her partner in crime Jasper. Andrea, one of the fastest and most positive females of our tribe, is departing next week across the States to a land some of you may know as Albuquerque (thank you, spell check). This morning we celebrated her with dog bones and donuts as she takes on a new life challenge and journey. I am proud to introduce you to our very own Dr. Dre. This is her story. We will miss her.
I’ll be the first to admit that I’m skeptical of new things. I’m not proud of it, but it’s true. I approached November Project cautiously at first. I was a few months post knee surgery and was frustrated that I hadn’t been able to run in a while, frustrated that I had to give up playing rugby, and in need of something new. Still skeptical, I was finally convinced when Allison told me that some people brought their dogs. If Jasper could come, I was in.
Looking back, that skepticism was absurd. The November Project Baltimore community is the best group of people that I have ever come across. Individually, you are all welcoming, kind, and enthusiastic. Together, you form the best community in Baltimore, hands down. A group of people crazy enough to wake up at the crack of dawn to work out in the rain, snow, and summer heat cannot, by definition, be bad.
Today was my last Wednesday workout before I move to Albuquerque. There may have been a few tears. There were definitely too many doughnuts. Unbeknownst to you, NP has been my secret support network as I finished my PhD. The last 6 months or so have been hard. Writing a dissertation is a lonely and isolating experience, but starting a day with this tribe made it so much easier to focus. A tough Tuesday was ok because I knew I’d be able to wake up and work out with you all on Wednesday morning. All joking aside, I really think Wednesdays and Fridays were my most productive days. I failed to mention it to you all previously, but NP got a shout out in the acknowledgements section of my dissertation. I seriously could not have done it without your support and stress-reducing workouts. So, there you have it: the glories of NP forever memorialized deep in the virtual stacks of dissertations tucked away in the Johns Hopkins library (probably never to be read…).
I will miss you all so much. I will miss Rash Field and the long, miserable hill at Patterson Park. I will miss Sunrise 6k’s and City Glow runs and 100-10 workouts. I will miss the hugs, the smiles, the accountability, the incredible leadership, and the subtle competition pushing me to improve. Most of all, I will miss the feeling of belonging to something that is so much bigger and better than each individual combined. I will definitely be back to visit, and my spare bedroom in Albuquerque will always be open for all of you beautiful people (and especially for Nick, Syd, and Pat when they come out to start a new tribe for me).
Goodbye for now,
(Letter ‘L’ below)