The Tension of Not Knowing

This is a blog I’ve thought about writing a zillion times in the last 15 weeks, and yet the timing never “felt right”. My heart and mind were still undecided about running and being honest about the unknown is scary, so I told myself it wasn’t time. I wanted things figured out and presented perfectly before I laid it out there. But the reality is, life is messy and how often do we really have everything figured out? And even if we create the perfect plan, it rarely turns out that way.

This surgery and period of recovery has challenged me to take a step back from running. In the beginning I knew it was the healthiest thing I could do and hoped that after a few weeks it would be clear what I wanted to do. For the first time in 20 years, I did nothing for 10 weeks. Not one PT exercise, cross training session, ab routine, etc. In good faith I got exercises from my PT at 6 weeks, believing I would start preparing to weight bear. But the motivation wasn’t present and I chose not to force it. It was freeing to realize that while I do enjoy being active, it is not necessary for me to live life with intention and joy.

This has been an incredible realization, but also left me questioning what it meant for running. If I can live fully without being active, does that mean I am embarking on a new season of life where running is a leisure activity and I get a “normal” job? Or is this just a natural part of the process of taking a step back and the drive and motivation to push my body at a high level will come back?

I wish I knew the answers to these questions, but the truth is, despite all the hours of analyzing, I don’t. Both options excite me and scare me at the same time. I would rather have it figured out, but I am choosing to continue to live in the tension of not knowing. It’s an uncomfortable place to be, but I am trusting that I will know when the time comes. Until then, I am working on being confident and vulnerable in the midst of the unknown. I trust that I am exactly where I am meant to be.

Honoring What You Have

I am reading a book entitled Daring Greatly and a quote in explained exactly what I’ve feeling in this season of life but couldn’t put to words. Brené Brown writes about lessons she learned from people who have gone through hardships and losses. One of the lessons was to “be grateful for what you have and celebrate it. When you honor what you have, you’re honoring what I’ve lost” (125).

OiselleBirdCamp2015**-50I started thinking about this in regards to running and it is so true. I am in a period of life where I’ve temporarily “lost” my ability to run. Most runners are eaten alive when they can’t run for even just a few days. I am totally fine doing nothing. I’ve decided that I am the “craziest non-crazy” runner out there.

But, I still smile when I see people running because they are enjoying something that I presently can’t do. I feel honored in this time of injury when they cherish their ability to be out there running healthfully. I want to hear about their good workout or see their excitement about a new training breakthrough. It is a reminder that they are not taking running for granted and in that, they honor me.

So for those of you who run, thank you for appreciating the days when you get to lace up your shoes and run. Seeing you celebrate the milestones you’re reaching and find joy in the process encourages me. It honors where I am at and gives me hope for the future.