Driving rain, wind so strong I had to lean into it. It was cold but not freezing. There was something endearing about it all, something that didn’t cause me to dread stepping out into it, but rather something that drew me towards it.
After all these months running doesn’t hurt anymore. I have kept it so easy and allowed my body to just come along on its terms. Every step feels like the privilege it is. It feels so good not to be chasing something that has happened. It feels so good to be moving forward, it feels so good to be this close to being back in the game.
There was this moment in that driving rain and wind, a sudden moment. Where the trees ahead caught my eye. The one on the left was bright bright orange. The one across the street from it a deep shade of red, somehow framed by the yellow and red that stood behind it. The brightness and the beauty was a stark contrast to the grey that surrounded all of it.
I can’t help but smile in those moments. Experiences like this are the biggest reason I am out here. The treadmill would have been easier today for sure. The rain isn’t always the safest option. But had I chosen to stare at the wall for these miles, this is what I would have missed.
I don’t think much about running when I am running. I don’t think about too much at all actually. I feel. I experience. I absorb what’s around me. There are so many moments when I find myself… toe to toe with myself. It’s not about who has to win. It’s not about who is stronger. It’s answering the question….. in the dark moments am I able to be with myself? Am I able to trust myself? Am I able to like myself? When all else has fallen away, can I sit with myself?
The answer is yes.
In those moments I realize that I am stronger than my storm.
We all have a storm. I am not interested in comparing whose storm is stronger. Whose storm is worse. Whose is the most traumatic. When we compare what we’ve been through to others we are just getting into a silly pissing match that no one gets to win. Our storms are our storms, and they are deep and real to us. Rather than compare and compete about it, reach out your damn hand and help one another.
You realize in those moments that all that truly matters is just to see each other through it.
I realize in these moments when I could have chosen to stay safe and to stay inside, that it’s really not about running. In my life, I tend to head towards the difficult stuff. I like to dive into the middle of it. It’s never pretty, it’s never easy but every single time…. it’s worth it.
Had I stayed inside I would have never seen the colors as I saw them that day. Had I stayed inside I would have never felt the perseverance as I did that day. I would never have realized how far I have come since last spring. I would never have had that realization that I am in fact, strong again.
Running, sport, it’s all just a metaphor for life. Or maybe, life is a metaphor for sport.
Either way…… I know that I am wired to head into the belly of the storm. It’s just how I operate. One hundred percent of the time…. I see things I wouldn’t otherwise see, I hold hands I wouldn’t otherwise hold and I feel gratitude that is impossible for me to feel when I take the easy route.