Monday, September 8, 2014

This morning I chose NOT to run

This morning I chose not to run.  I was ready to.  I had gotten up very early.  I had done more than an hour of work.  I had calculated that today would put me over 1500 miles for the year.  I had made buttermilk biscuits.  I had told the dog she could wait until I got back.

But I chose not to run.  

And even non-running days are part of the spiritual pilgrimage that I am on.


Because two and one-half weeks ago when I chose to run despite having a million things on my mind I ended up falling and having to wear a wrist brace for four weeks.

So, today, when I was taking the buttermilk biscuits out of the oven, I set them on the stove.  Problem was, they were too close to the edge.  Potholder hanging on a hook near the stove.  Hook was upside down.  Tipped the potholder.  Down it fell onto the pan.  Using a lightyweight metal pan rather than stone, it tipped and flipped all 20 biscuits onto the floor.  The dog got a treat.  I was almost ready to cry.


20 biscuits.  Not the greatest thing but not the end of the world.

But it was after a very long day.

The day was great for most of it.

I started with a 12 mile run with three friends.  Met one on the way.  Picked up her and she was surprised that I had a country music station on.  Got out of the car at my office building and ran through down town, up to Charles Village, across to Lake Montebello, and into vairous sections of east Baltimore.

Great run.

No mass this Sunday morning as I had gone on Saturday.  That day, one of the readings was Rom 13:8-10.  In reading this, where Paul summarized basically all the commandments that focus on how to treat others (as opposed to those that focus on our relationship with God), I realized that there is at least one thing I share in common with him.  Connecting the dots.  Seeing the relationship among the others-oriented commandments and saying "Love your neighbor as yourself."  It's that simple.  That is my kind of thinking for how to connect dots and nourish my soul.

We also had our annual block party yesterday.  And while I was just as happy for much of it to peopel watch and listen to good music, I did enjoy talking with several neighbors and eat good food.  

We also had the ice hockey kickoff celebration.  That was a lot of fun.

But two things were on my mind from yesterday.  First, my long time training partner thinks that she might be hanging up the running shoes.  I say thinks because it is hard to tell when a person is truly done.  But she has had so many injuries that just never seem to end that she is ready to be done.  We will see.  I know how much it is a part of her identity.  When that is true, it is hard to part with an activity.  

Second, a runner I'd just met this summer lost her life in a motorcyle accident yesterday.  She had run 50 races between her 49th and 50th birthdays.  Amazing and positive person.  Known to many in the local running community.

Two running losses.  One closer to me given how long I've known the two individuals.  One more immediate in terms of the total loss.

Those were on my mind.  Maybe they contributed to losing the biscuits as well.

But one way or another, it was clear that my mind was not 100% on running.  

So I chose not to run.

So, the dog got two treats this morning--my homemade biscuits to eat and an extra long walk where I didn't even take my cell phone with me so I could just focus on being safe.

Tomorrow I will run again.

There will be many days for me to run again.

And I will respect my training partner and friend most by running--and celebrating what we all love.  Even though at least one and possibly both will never celebrate that for herself again.   

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