I am never going to run a marathon. Even if I changed my mind one day, my knees would never agree to go through with it. Though I’ll never join their ranks, I certainly admire marathon runners for their ability to power through physical pain and mental exhaustion.
I’ve always likened Mission Impossible: Ulysses to running a marathon for pretty obvious reasons: it’s difficult (plain and simple), we’re pacing the reading over a relatively long period of time, and it’s easy to feel like giving up. Plus, if you finish, you’ve won some bragging rights.
But alas, here we are with a few miles left to go on our reading marathon. You might feel like these folks in the picture here, tired and wondering why you ever started the race in the first place. I want to encourage you not to give up at this point. There’s still time to pick up the novel and power through it. For me, reading Ulysses has always been a discipline, not a warm, fuzzy, feel-good exercise. My mind has been stretched and challenged. Themes and ideas have lingered in my thoughts. I’ve had flashes of joy, sadness, hope, and sheer hilarity.
I know that the only reason I’m 92% done with Ulysses is that I’ve had a lot of reading partners to keep me going. Group meetings have been the best part of this journey, and the people I see each time are the reason I’ll be 100% done in a little more than a week. After all, how many people finish a marathon alone?
So, my fellow readers, it’s time to run the last and hardest few miles of our journey. I hope to see you at the finish line.