Running again has done this for me. It has been a several months since I was able to get beyond the obstacles of forcing my body to remember what it used to do, but for some time now I have found what I thought I had lost. You can tell me I'm an idiot, but I would say the same to you if I simply didn't understand. Sure I run for pace and time, but the effort has pushed my running beyond the physical fitness and into opening doors in my mind that have been closed for way too long.
One might refer to it as being, well, skull f***ed. My apologies, but this is the best true definition I can attach to it.
This, this is what I have missed out on, or better yet - have lacked - for...geez...I'm afraid to say it...for years. I now know this and, I'm ashamed to say, what everyone has tried to tell me for as long as I can remember. If you are among them, and you know who you are, I'm sorry. I'm so, so sorry for not understanding, for being unable think, for not getting beyond my small mind, for not seeing things through the same eyes or glasses as you, for being less than what was needed.
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It was once said to me that all I cared about was beer and running which is far from the truth. I like beer and have quite a few friends in the beer community, we talk and relate to one another. We aren't snobbish about it.
What wasn't understood was that I wasn't running to get away, to ignore, to hide or to exclude. I was running to help me understand, to ponder decisions, to wonder where I'm going. And, yes, it has helped to sway which direction to go when stuck between a rock and a hard place. The kind of decisions to which you hope you aren't wrong and letting go of something that part of you wants to hold on to - but you know it has be done despite major reluctance. A part of you that just can no longer be. Attachments be damned, release them and run in the opposite direction screaming, "Serenity Now!"
Sure this has created major insecurity, an enormous amount of butterflies that poke the gag reflex, sleepless nights and restless days. I'm typically confident and secure in who I am, this is new territory for me...but that's good. This is living, this is feeling, this is being human and not casually going through life without putting yourself out there, let chance be your guide.
Yeah, this is some scary sh*t. Like I said...this is new to me, sadly.
And this is all because of running? No, it isn't.
Running, rather, getting to this level in running has led me to this. It may not be running for you, it may be some other physical activity or self-reflecting exercise, place or process. Though this particular area of running has been that for me.
It started about getting beyond the return to running, then suddenly I lost a big part of what was my life and attempted to remedy that by running to suppress feelings and to forget. Though that's not what took place. Instead of suppressing and forgetting, I've knocked over a can of worms that has opened closed doors, unleashed hidden feelings and uncovered a world that was tucked behind mountains of selfish pride and an unwillingness to change. Of course, it hasn't been some magic bullet of change - I can feel the urge to go back, but it is up to me to continue forward.
Guess what? Change is hard.
I'm now questioning where I live and where I work, I now have a passport with a trip to Costa Rica this summer - my first trip abroad. I ponder what needs to go, what needs to be brought in and who I need to leave behind because I'm moving forward for the first time in what feels like a lifetime. I don't need to tell anyone about what I'm doing or why I'm doing it, because this is for me so I can be a better person for everyone - present and future.
It's not you, it's me. As it should have been long ago.
So...I found myself running, and didn't realize how lost I had been.