Friday, November 28, 2014

Long time, no blog...

Long time, no blog.

Where have I been? Well, the truth is I have been all over the place. Two months with my running injury has had me running around like a mad woman trying to get back to my happy place.

No bueno.

Painful runs. Pity parties. Renewed strength followed by giving up. Stops. Starts. A few extra pounds. 3 chiropractor visits. Gym substitutions. A tryst of physical therapy. One that netted me a creepy winking doctor watching me do pelvic thrust exercises and sending me off with exercises he referred to as my love note. Oye vay.

The latter was the final push to see the serious guys regarding my running injury. I made an appointment with the local orthopedic group. The doctor there suspects I have torn the meniscus in my knee. I have an MRI scheduled next week to confirm his theory. If the doctor is right and I have a tear, he said the only fix will be surgery. The good news is that he said if you have to have knee surgery, it's the best one to have. He promised I would be running again after the surgery in a month, which means I should be able to make my May marathon goal.

Deep breath.

I left with mixed emotions. I've said all along that I just wanted a diagnosis. I usually do better with knowing rather than not knowing. But the truth is that even knowing, I've still been struggling. I'm struggling to stay positive. My wise friend likened finally having a diagnosis to standing at the edge of a mountain rather than an abyss. That visual has helped me a ton. It's helped me realize also though, that I'm having a hard time finding the strength to face the daily view of the mountain. Some days I feel alone and it feels insurmountable. Other days I feel invincible and determined to get to the top. It's a daily chore, sometimes an hourly chore, to stay positive and keep my perspective.

I've been reflecting on all this a ton. My blog was meant to be positive and to inspire others through my running. How do you do that when you aren't running? How do you inspire others when you don't feel consistently inspired yourself? My writing inspiration has been MIA. I've realized that I have defined myself as a runner who writes. Simple enough, right? Makes sense, right? Except if I believe that then who I am is defined by what I do. If I'm not running I'm not a writer.

Not true.

This is all stuff I have realized before and stuff I thought I already knew and yet here I am. Apparently I didn't know as much as I thought I did. In fact I recently wrote about all this as I was contemplating what this is really about. What the heck is the lesson in all this?

I once heard a speaker ask the question, who are we, really? This is what he said...

We are not what we do.
We are not what we have.
We are not what other people say we are.

Ok. So then who am I?

I run.
But if I am not the runner, who am I?
I write.
But if I am not the writer, who am I?
I own beautiful possessions.
But if I were to own none, who am I?
I am called the Director of Operations.
But if I am not really, who am I?

Here's what I decided.

I am that which awakens when I feel my heart pounding when I run. I am the peace that travels through the wind from a far away place that connects me to something I can't explain.
I am the essence that I clothe in words hoping to connect myself with the world.
I am the kindness and love I seek to express in the job I have chosen to do.
And the culmination of all this was captured perfectly by a friend...
I am what drives me and the consequence is apparent in what I do, have or am.

None of these realizations make me miss running any less. I still long to get back out there. But it does make me pause and recognize that what I love to do is simply an outlet to reveal who I already am deep inside. So today I've created space for my writing. I realized I've been making excuses.

I'm not running so I can't write my blog
No one wants to hear my thoughts outside the context of running.
I don't have the proper space to write in.
Blah, blah, blah.

The truth is, they are all excuses. All of them. I can write even when I'm not running. I can create time and space for writing.

The truth is, I have been afraid to write and post my blog since I haven't been running because I have defined myself by running. I have defined myself by something I do.

But you know what? I'm so much more than just a chick who loves to run and write about it. I need to get over myself. And until I can hit the road again and get back out there I will be writing about that chick on here. I will be sharing my struggle and journey to overcome this injury and stay healthy. I will be sharing who I am rather than just something I do until I reach my next starting line. And ahem...ps...I will reach the next starting line :)

Just like I realized after finishing the marathon a mere two months ago, everything really happened when I named my dream and started training for it, not when I crossed a finish line.

And so, once again, I am humbly reminded that life really has so little to do with the destination, and everything to do with the journey. I'm hoping you'll decide to stick with me on mine.