Two days later and I’ve recovered from the horrors of running. I keep replaying the night over and over again, the sheer terror I felt when the nice running teacher “D” said “now run”. I didn’t take time to enjoy any of it, I couldn’t’ catch my breath after the first minute of running and the two minutes of walking didn’t help. It was panic that started to get to me.
But there was one interval on the way back that stands out. Besides the wet toes, the demented headlamp digging into my head, I remember “D” quietly but with authority saying “control your breath, dig your heel into the ground and let it pull you forward”. And for a few seconds I could do that, I’d plant my heel and make it drag my body along and I slowed down the desperate gulps for air. It lasted for a minute and then I went back to panicking and telling myself I couldn’t possibly do this.
The entire 20 minutes, “D” talked to me. Told me her story, about her wonderful husband and children, how she had started back up running. I was desperate to stop but I didn’t want to interrupt her, I wanted to hear more. And because I couldn’t talk, I was forced to listen. And “D” managed to fill every fear filled moment with her story and it saved me from rolling into a ball and hiding.
The next day I got up at 7am and walked the 30 minutes to a meeting, walked back and started to feel a tiny bit of energy. “D” said we should try and get 2 more runs in this week and in about a half an hour, Little Bloom and I will go for a run.
And I will stop talking myself out of it and I will slow down when I need to and I will listen, Because sometimes the wisdom we so desperately need comes in the quietest of whispers and if we are so busy talking in our heads, we’re going to miss it.
Best part of today's run? It's still light out and I have no need for the demented headlamp.