I’ve been a recreational runner for years. I usually run 10-15 miles a week, do 5K and 10K races regularly, with an occasional longer race thrown in for fun and torture. And I’ve always done all of this alone. I like the solitude of the workout, the singular sound of my size nines hitting the pavement, my own regular breathing (with a few gasps now and then on the hills).
I was always alone in this endeavor – until today.
The Husband decided it would be good for him to sign up for a 5K event too. He walked. I ran. We finished. I was first.
But it really didn’t matter in terms of placement or time. Given the events of the past few months, I expected nothing out of this event. From the illness and death of my mother, to getting sick myself (I was on antibiotics until Wednesday) to a toothache (dentist on Monday, and it looks like an issue with a crown) and all the other stuff of dealing with the estate and keeping order in my own house, I just wanted to finish this race. It was cold and windy, the course was a concrete track and hilly, but it was scenic. And the organizers did a really nice job, with an on-time start, good on-course guidance and elegant food and hot coffee service at the end.
For the record, doing this event was The Husband’s idea. he actually signed up ahead of me. He’s been trying to keep me doing “normal” things when I would prefer to do nothing other than sit in a ratty bathrobe and be depressed and worried. He’s never once come out and said, “You need to get out and do ordinary things instead of doing sad things, or sitting and being anxious.” He’s just led the way quietly and I’ve followed because those “ordinary” things happen to be things I enjoy under any circumstances.
And in case you’re wondering: no, he didn’t let me win this morning. I’m faster than him any day when it comes to a running race. I admit to being slower when it comes to understanding that life still needs to be lived with grace, lightness and small doses of normal, even in extraordinary circumstances.