Slice of Life Challenge: Day 9
What are your passions? The things you love to do? Your reflective or creative outlets? Your “must-do’s” so you can keep centered; in touch with the real “you”?
What it one of them was taken away?
For me, some of my greatest outlets include reading, running and writing.
These each help me reflect on big questions. Who I am. What I believe. Where I’ve been; where I am; and where I’m going.
Sometimes, I let these passions fade. I allow myself to get distracted by lesser pursuits. Usually these are passive meanderings, often involving screens (like television or the tablet), that relax my brain for awhile, and eventually turn me into mush.
But when the reflective outlet of running is removed or restricted, I can feel lost. Discarded. As if the world story continues to unfold, but I no longer have a verse to contribute. That I’ve been benched. Relegated to the injured list. No longer in the box score. Off the team.
For the past two weeks, I’ve been sidelined with a mild leg injury, likely induced by over-training. I put up more than 200 miles running in the first six weeks of the year, mostly in horrid conditions, and my body finally demanded HALT!
So these past couple of weeks I’ve been stretching, recovering, and eating more sweets than is warranted. I’m not sure I could chase down a Girl Scout, even if she was holding out a box of Thin Mints to tease me. I see runners in the streets and I feel compelled to roll down my window and tell them, “I’ll be out there soon! I’m really a runner, too!”
And then it hits me.
I’ve been feeling a little unworthy to wear that title. Runner.
Now, I know this is silly. I realize it is just a minor setback, and that I will be plodding my miles again soon. But I’ve been less encouraging of my runner friends online, mostly because it is hard to say “Great run” or “Nice job”, when they’re lacing up their Nikes and running laps through the neighborhood, while I’m trekking back and forth to the kitchen for my next stash of Samoas or Do-si-do’s.
All of which reminds me how grateful I am when I am able to run.
So many people don’t have the physical capability to run. Whether disability, injury, or other obstacles, some people just aren’t as blessed as I am. They’ll never experience the thrill of crossing a finish line, no matter what the clock reads. They can’t just lace up their shoes and head out for a 5 mile jog through the forest. They’ll never complete a 5K.
So right now, I’m sidelined. Temporarily.
But when I run, I remember that the biggest reason I run,
is because I can.
I run for my little buddy, Orion, who cannot see or hear.
I run for Eric, who passed last year.
I run for orphans in Kenya, because my running can help provide them with an education.
I run for my mom, who has been gone for quite some time.
I run, because they can’t.
I run, because I can.