Perspectives

‘Who is this Jimmy guy?’

By Jenne Wittwer
Posted 1/16/20

I was actually running in the Boston Marathon! If someone would have told me five years ago I would run a marathon, let alone qualify for Boston, I would not have believed them. But here I was!

As …

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Perspectives

‘Who is this Jimmy guy?’

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I was actually running in the Boston Marathon! If someone would have told me five years ago I would run a marathon, let alone qualify for Boston, I would not have believed them. But here I was!

As I crossed the starting line, shoulder to shoulder with 30,000 other runners, I was trying not to miss anything. The crowds cheering, bands playing, and volunteers handing out water, Gatorades and other snacks.

I heard a group of people yell with such enthusiasm and support for someone named Jimmy. I quickly looked around to see who they were cheering for. No one really waved back, but I thought I saw a guy behind me smile.

“That must be him,” I thought. “Lucky Jimmy.”

I weaved through the mob of runners, passing people, some people passing me. A light sprinkle of rain, but not at all as bad as they had predicted. I heard some more cheers for Jimmy. “Go Jimmy! You got this!”

“Wow, Jimmy has a lot of people out here supporting him!” I looked around for that Jimmy, but I was surrounded by completely different runners now.

“Wait, who is this Jimmy guy?” I thought.

Mile after mile, people shouted in my direction for Jimmy.

During the hardest part of the race, I started climbing HeartBreak Hill. The last hill of five hills right in a row and, might I add, it’s the longest and steepest. My feet completely soaked and muscles tired, I pushed up the hill. I was focusing on not stopping, but putting one foot in front of the other.

“You can do this Jimmy! You got this! You are so close!” Everyone kept cheering for Jimmy.

You can imagine my frustration because I had even put my name on my bib so others would know my name and cheer for me. Not one person had cheered for me! Instead this Jimmy guy, who I couldn’t seem to get away from, was getting all the support.

“I sure could use a few of Jimmy’s cheers at this moment!” I was thinking, so annoyed at Jimmy.

I decided to cut out the noise and stop feeling sorry for myself. At least someone was getting the support they needed and pushed on.

Coming closer to the end of the 26.2 miles, along the stretch by Fenway Park, I could hear the cheers start up for Jimmy, and then end once I passed.

Suddenly I realized, “Jimmy sounds alot like Jenne!”

They had been cheering for me this whole time! I was just so sure that the enthusiastic cheers for “Jimmy” couldn’t possibly be for simple old me — Jenne.

I laughed at myself, realizing the support for me had been there THE WHOLE TIME. Especially when I needed it! I couldn’t believe I was actually annoyed at their cheers!

It made me think of the supporters symbolically as God and the marathon as life. God truly does know ALL of his children and does “support” and “cheer” for us, even though we might not realize it is for US!  We think, “Oh that must be for someone else, I am certainly not that important.” Or, “That can’t possibly be for me!”

But he does support simple old me and simple old you! We are God’s purpose and he does know each one of us. We just need to realize that God has been with us every long hard step of the way. Even if we don’t know it!

 

(Jenne Wittwer is the Powell 2nd Ward Primary president for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.)

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