I can’t lie to you. No, check that–I can, but I choose not to. This is what I must tell you: I have not run a step in two weeks, since my last Media Challenge Race. My life has, like a phlebotomist, stuck me with a big needle and drained just enough of the good stuff out of me that I have had neither desire nor energy to run. (Part of me is afraid that every run will be like this one; part of me is disappointed in myself, so easily dissuaded from my training; another part of me thinks this could be the emotional equivalent to the two-week recovery many runners allow themselves after the effort of a marathon.)
I am in Colorado for a 3-day family huddle; even my parents are here and it is a great gift to be surrounded by these six humans. Right now, at this very moment, I am typing at the kitchen table. I can hear my mother reading goodnight books to my 2-year old nephew, my sister-in-law sewing in her craft room downstairs, and my dad sighing with relief as he puts his feet up on the porch. Normally, I am not one to delight in or even seek out these kinds of mundane, domestic moments, but this is the best place for me to be.
The thing I must tell you next: today I ran! I ran a little over 3.5 miles, with my brother. He led us along the Coal Creek Trail, two miles out and two miles back. I wore my new shorts; I was very girly all in pink (also not normal for me). There was a remarkable number of other athletes out biking and running for 11 AM on a Thursday morning, but that’s one of the awesome things about Boulder County: everyone is active. So Brother and I ran, and talked. At one point we walked (IK hadn’t eaten enough and was feeling “floppy”), and I cried a little. Running again was nice, with the company. The altitude made me wheezy, but I felt better than I’d anticipated. Maybe, with a little more time, I’ll even be able to get out there and run on my own again, and not panic about where my thoughts might take me if I’m alone.
Yesterday, it rained for the first time in a long time here. The area needed it bad; the worst forest fire in these mountains’ history has tore through the country around Boulder, forcing many folks to evacuate their homes, hoping they can return to a structure and not a pile of ash. After the rains, I went outside with my niece and nephew, and we were treated to the splendid view of a double rainbow, stretching all the way across the sky. They jumped up and down, chanting in unison “I don’t believe it! I don’t believe it!” I certainly couldn’t believe it, especially since I had seen a rainbow just a few weeks before, after I ran in the race at Eisenhower Park. The weather fanned its peacock feathers at me twice in less than a month: what are the odds? It’s tempting to once again do something that’s not normal for me, and that is to take those rainbows as a sign. A positive sign, at that (optimism is not in my normal repertoire, either).
We’ll see. For now, I am just thinking it would be nice to run again, maybe on Saturday. Maybe.
(Yes, my nephew is wearing a pink ballerina dress.)