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The Race to Districts
A Battle to Districts
Mother, help me tell the story of my
hardest race, the Platteview Invitational.
At the end of the season, it was the on-
ly way into districts. 2.6 miles long.
A cross country meet, and it was a long run.
Through corn fields, in hailing dust, the terri-
ble finish. A very mental race of push-
ing myself, going faster and faster.
“First place in the JV race goes to districts,” Mr. Rainbolt’s text stated about the Platteview Meet. Oh well, I would not make it anyways. I showed my mom the text.
The garlic bread tasted so good. We were at the team dinner at Mr. Rainbolt’s house the night before the Platteview cross country meet. We were filling up on pasta, bread, and ice cream. I was sitting next to Laura and we were already getting nervous for the meet tomorrow.
It was Tuesday and we were on the bus ride to Platteview. I was sitting next to Laura and we were nervous, but ready to get the meet over with.
We got out of the bus and headed over to the spot by our team. We only had a few minutes to get ready and then it was time to warm up.
When we went to warm up, I could feel the butterflies in my stomach. The race was going to start soon! My heart was jumping around. Mr. Rainbolt started giving us our pre-race pep talk.
Before I knew it, we were lined up at the starting line. I was as nervous as a high school freshman, on her first day of school, walking into an assembly with all of the older students.
All of a sudden the gun went off and so did I. I started to set my pace and I was in the middle of the pack. I began to say a little prayer, and out of nowhere I saw God. God told me everything was going to be fine, and I should not worry. Then he told me he believed in me and he would be with me through the whole race.
We were a few minutes into the race when we entered the cornfield. It was so dusty in there and there was no one to cheer us on. By then I had set my pace and I was breathing hard. I was in the top half of the runners.
It was getting really hard to breathe with of all the dust. It was as hard to breathe as being underwater and trying to get a breath of air, but only inhaling water. Water filling up my lungs and preventing a breath; that was exactly the way the dust affected me.
I was starting to get side aches and my breathing was getting harder. I had been passing girls and I was getting into the top group, when I started to crash. Girls started to pass me, and my spirits started to fall. I was getting upset.
As I ran through the cornfield, I felt like I needed some kind of help, someone to cheer me on, keep pushing me. Then I heard God telling me I could do it, that the race was half over. Suddenly, I felt at peace in God’s presence. I felt my breathing become even and my side ache start to go away. I was so thankful for my God.
I was still hurting, but I was pushing on. I was getting closer to the end, but it was not in sight yet. If I was going to quit, it would have been the right time. I was starting to feel major pain.
Then I heard voices inside of me telling me that I could not finish like this, going so fast. I tried to keep my pace, but the voices kept telling me to slow down, that I was not good enough. I could not keep up with this, fighting myself emotionally and physically. I felt like I was going to get sick, and the voices told me to slow down so I wouldn’t.
Suddenly, we exited the cornfield, and I realized that I was behind only three other girls! This gave me new hope and I passed one girl. Now there were just two in front of me. I was running with one of the girls, and we were cheering each other on with the little energy we had left, when we saw our coaches. They looked surprised to see me in the front. I was surprised too.
We were almost to the end and I could see the finish! For the last time in that race, I said a little prayer of thanks to God. In a clear voice I heard Him tell me He loved me and believed in me. That gave me a final push and I went hard.
Towards the end I saw my mom and grandpa cheering me on. This made me happy too, but the finish was getting harder. I was near the end, and I was neck in neck with my teammate Larissa.
I was like Bambi, running away from the fire and towards the water. Bambi ran as fast as possible, he ran for his life. I was trying to run from Larissa and to the finish line. Picking my legs up, striding, and sprinting.
It was the final moment, and I shot ahead and crossed the finish line before Larissa. I felt like I was going to get sick, but I took a few breaths and congratulated Larissa. She did the same to me. Then my mom and grandpa asked me what happened at the end. I told them and they were so proud of me!
Then my coaches and teammates congratulated me. I was going to districts! I was nervous, but excited! I was very happy when I was called up to receive my second place ribbon for the JV meet. I came in second place, behind one of the Gretna girls.