Day #73

Today I failed. I was supposed to run six miles per the training app we are following. We got to the gym one hour before it closed. They turned the lights out on me right after I finished mile five…

I know I should be okay with running the five. I did hills the first three miles. I ran without stopping for a breather for four miles which is the longest I’ve managed thus far. I finished five miles in an hour. This should all be enough…

But the bar was set at six… my Love finished six… and I missed the mark…

As much as I didn’t want to be, I was disappointed in myself. I’ve always been the token first-born overachiever… or at least up until the last couple of years. Then I realized something that shook my whole life up… achievement doesn’t fulfill me. I have been the one to never give up, even when giving up would have served me better. I have been the perfectionist, the dependable one, the “hardest working person in show biz” as my dad likes to call me.

But I realized a few years ago that no one is really going to remember me for my achievements and no one really cares much if I’m the best. I learned the hard way that if who I am isn’t good enough to begin with, then no matter how hard I work to prove myself, I will just never be good enough for that person, that religion, that marriage. And I finally did the one thing I never thought I could do, I quit. I walked away holding my breath and terrified. And when I got outside in the dark in the night in the aloneness, I though I would die, I thought I would be punished, I thought I would crumble to pieces.

I remember marveling at the night when I first left my former life. I would put Adalie to sleep and take a blanket and just lay in the night. And instead of terror, I found hope. Hope in feeling connected without feeling condemned. Hope in the stars that share dust with me. Hope in living by the dark, of not needing to have all the answers to enjoy the day, embrace this life, and love without condition.

My failed run… it is only a blip on the scale of failures I have achieved… I failed huge a few years ago and it was the most liberating experience of my life…

Try it, my gentle readers, fail sometime when failing serves you best… embrace the dark… and just breathe…

Day #12

Maybe it was the dreary weather for the third day in a row. Or maybe the lack of energy in my bones.

But today just seemed dark from the beginning.

Now I’m not a person who spends much thought or emotion on the darker side of things. I’m a glass half full kinda girl. I avoid scary places, movies, and books. I love parties and romance and magical thinking (such as fairies have to be real somewhere!).

But today I heard stories of manipulations so vast they steal souls, and saw hints of abuse haunting a little girls eyes. I witnessed a shell of a man who’s only wish is family. And I walked at dusk…

My mindset while walking was grim. I was alone and it was getting dark. I was a little nervous because I was at a public park. I was pissed that as a woman I felt the need to look over my shoulder to make sure I was safe. I kept my phone close and my keys closer. Some days no matter how hard I try to sugarcoat it, it’s just a shitty world at there.

But I walked anyway and the path led me around and back to my car and safety again. I never stopped walking and I never let the fear drive me to madness. And I never once thought about quitting.

I realized as I sat in my warm, safe, happy-music-car…

that this was much like life…

We go out into a scary world, bump into terrifying truths, and occasionally are ripped to shreds by horrific events, but the path continues and its our choice to lay down and die or to keep walking, even trudging, to a place of safety.

I am one of the lucky ones. I have a lovely home with food and warmth and laughter and family. No matter what darkness comes–I have a safe, soft place to land.

But not all are so lucky, gentle readers–maybe not even you. And so, I plead that we tread lightly with one another. Because your walk in the park might be another someone’s darkest trails…A gravel path vanishing into a spooky dusk background, with barren grass all around.