Monday, October 28, 2013

Reflections on a Run

Sometimes, you go for a run to make sense of things. Or to be alone. To run off anger. To cry. To expel the despair welling up inside of you. Maybe to shake off the unfairness of a wound. There are a million reasons, all compelling. All profoundly personal. 

There is a deep sense of familiar rhythm on a run like this. A tempo that stirs from a place in the depths of your chest and longs to be matched- by your feet, your pulse, your breathing. 

Today, what I notice with clarity is the amazing sameness around me. I've pounded this sidewalk hundreds of times. I observe certain things I've beheld over and over again. The crack in the sidewalk that's patched over with blacktop. The metal mark of an old local fence company. The spot where the tree grows too low. The squiggly line where the sprinkler at the school makes the dirt run across the white of the sidewalk. 

I've run this route so many times. Anxious times. Times when I was filled with fear, or uncertainty. Sad, broken times. Joyful, victorious times. 

I have wept along this path. I have spoken, out loud, the very words I would not allow myself even to think in the quiet places of my mind. Things that have been...

...ugly worst insecurities broken hopes anger over betrayal

Sometimes you go for a run to make sense of things. You want to feel and be numb. You want to rage and be made calm. You want to find a way to have justice, yet be content without it. 

To be more specific, more vulnerable, I want those things.

I look up at the gathering clouds, and see within them a strip of blue sky. It seems comforting, a promise almost. A sliver of something clear and good amid a sea of gray.

And then the rain starts. Sprinkles at first, and then large, fat drops. They hang on my eyelashes. Drip off my hair. It, too, the rain, seems reassuring. Cleansing. Soothing. 

Sometimes you go for a run to make sense of things. And sometimes, things don't make sense. And it is ok. 

And that is enough. Because truly, things don't have to make sense. They often don't make sense.

Sometimes you go for a run to make sense of things. And you end up with the same questions you started with, but with a sense of peace. 

Peace, I'm learning, is better than all the answers.