It’s been quite the evening. After a series of events that sparked a lot of thinking in my head, and after I realized that it was 1:15 in the morning and I was nowhere near tired (nor would I have been able to sleep with all the stuff cluttering my brain), I decided I needed a run. And what a great choice that was.
I couldn’t have asked for a better night. The temperature was hovering right around 70 and the moon brightly lit my path. I opted not to bring the headphones along tonight, I didn’t need any music that would spawn more thinking. And this was also a great choice, considering the sounds of the evening gave me an excellent soundtrack:
The sound of my shoes pounding the pavement with every pace. The whistle of the gentle breeze past my ears. The occasional buzz of a bug as it bombarded me. Chirping crickets, croaking frogs, barking dogs and passing cars and trains chugging along far in the distance. My own heavy, hard, staggered breathing trying to keep up with me. MY moonlight sonata, possibly more beautiful than Mr. Beethoven’s.
So I was running because I knew I had all these thoughts whirling around inside my noggin, but as I was running tonight, I found that I couldn’t really reconcile those thoughts. It wasn’t that I couldn’t face them, because I tried, I just got bored and found that I didn’t want to think about them any more than I already had. Instead I focused on whatever I felt or thought in the moment.
I began to think about how I really wanted to write later. The 2 things guaranteed to relieve stress/emotion for me are running and writing, so if I can cram both into one night, it’s gonna be a success. But I didn’t even want to write about the issues I was (unsuccessfully) pondering originally, I was over those at this point. As I was thinking about what to say, I wondered who invented all these eloquent words I use? Who gave me the capability to write as well as I (think I) do? Why do I like to write so much? I can’t wait until I one day have a job where I get paid to write (preferably for a magazine…Cosmo, Vogue anyone?).
Before I knew it, I’d be running for a while. I didn’t have a watch or a phone, so I didn’t know exactly how long, but my body was telling me it’d be quite some time because those annoying pains started creeping up on me. But then I realized that those annoying pains were exactly why I had wanted to run tonight. I needed to feel something other than emotions. After all, isn’t running the most acceptable and beneficial form of self-harm?
I wanted to feel the annoying pain in my hip, reminding me I should have stretched a bit more. And the annoying pain that had just barely started to creep into my feet, reminding me I wore my shoes I prefer to wear for shorter runs. And the annoying pain in my calves when they burn after I run up a hill. And the annoying pain in my chest when I’m running hard enough to feel it. I live for these pains. Why? Because for that moment, it’s all I focus on and everything else fades away. For that moment, my stupid emotions seem to have a purpose, like I have a reason for feeling the way I do when otherwise it doesn’t even make sense. For that moment, I feel alive and can appreciate existence and my how my body works like a well-oiled machine.
I probably ended up running for about 4-4.5 miles. Not a terribly far distance at all, but it was just right for me. Also, given the fact that I need to get back into running shape again, I was satisfied. As I rounded the home stretch onto my street, it was comforting to know that I didn’t have a clue what else to think about anymore. I was still in the mode of purely feeling, physically. I felt the sweat rolling down my skin and coating most of my body. I felt my stomach, cold as ice, as per usual after a good run. I felt my heart throbbing in my chest, yearning to regulate back to its normal beat as I felt the speed of my chest rising and falling start to ease. I felt free.
Now it’s approaching 4:00 AM and I’m still awake. How I’m still kickin is a mystery to me. And I think I’ve written more than enough, so I’m just gonna call it quits here.