I started getting an anxious feeling last weekend, not because it was nearing the anniversary of the marathon bombings, but because the marathon itself was approaching.

As inspiring and community building as the event may be, it’s also a pain in the neck for anyone who lives downtown.

Then, poof, my attitude changed. A simple sports injury (a banged up knee) brought me to a place I had never understood — despite all the marathon stories I’ve covered and all the people I’ve interviewed this past year.

Suddenly I had real compassion — a personal knowledge of what it feels like to be incapacitated — unable to drive, carry a glass, or pick up my own clothes.

I started thinking about the wonderful, brave, and focused people I’ve met over the past year: Roseann Sdoia, who lost her right leg; the Norden Brothers, Paul and J.P., who each lost a leg; and Jeff Bauman, the double amputee who came to symbolize the terror of that day captured in a horrific photo with Carlos Arredondo pushing him in a wheelchair.

When Jeff Bauman appeared with me on Greater Boston this week, I listened more carefully. I heard him say how cautious he is walking outside, that he desperately wants to shed the crutches that steal the use of his hands, but can’t yet because the outside world is just “too uneven.” And I heard his genuine words of thanks to everyone he’s met along the way who helped save his life and nursed him back to good health.

Last marathon day I was near the finish line, but only because I was meeting a friend for lunch, avoiding the actual race. This year I plan to be at the finish line reporting for WGBH News. But I’ll also be cheering on the runners — after all, it’s my job as a good neighbor to welcome thousands of people to the ‘hood.