When friends start checking-in with me with random “Send up a flare every now and then why dontcha’?” and “Hey girl, just checkin’ on you” and “Here’s a picture of some flowers from my garden, just because I thought you may need them” (Michelle is just the sweetest, I swear) type of messages, I start to think that maybe I should poke my head out of my hidey-hole cave to say, “I’m here! I’m alive! I’m sober!”
(And, wow, how is that for a long sentence?)
I just posted, what, a couple of weeks ago? But maybe y’all are picking up on some vibes I’m sending out without my even knowing I’m sending them out. I mean, just because I totally change the theme around here from a colorful header to a stark black and white theme, remove a few posts, and go MIA from commenting, doesn’t mean I’m isolating and withdrawing into existential angst again, does it?
Or wait. Maybe it does.
I think it has something to do with the change of seasons. Especially Autumn. Spring too, I realize, but Spring usually finds me depressed and longing; Autumn turns me inward–like the petals of a sunflower folding into its self–and more introspective. Autumn reminds me that everything is transitory, that everything in nature has a life-span. Falling leaves, dormant plants, less daylight. Things grow cooler, wispier, and I realize that I do too.
As a creature of extremes–remember, moderation is not my strong suit–I think it’s these “in-between seasons” that throw me off. Give me the freezing temps and the windy, desolate ice storms of Winter, or give me the blazing sun hot enough to fry an egg on the hood of your car, flowers in full bloom, sunburns and heat stroke of Summer. I want my seasons to take a stand. All or nothing, baby. Just not this in-between, ho-humness of a season that can’t make up its mind that leaves me trapped in my own head thinking of the past or the future, but not of the present.
But there’s a good thing about being trapped in your head. You spend a lot of time thinking. My creativity levels are off the charts; I see poems everywhere, and characters, and plot lines, and I see the passing of time . . . so many things slipping through the hourglass. I see reinvention and rewrites and renewal. I see second chances. My head is not a bad place to be these days, as opposed to the past when it was dark and dismal and suffocating. I’m in a good place. It feels strange to say that out loud, but it’s true.
There are some really awesome things going on for me . . . and I want to tell you all about them. And I will, in time. There are also some incredibly scary things going on too. Changes and things I can’t control and some stories that aren’t mine to tell. And I know that’s incredibly cryptic, I’m sorry–I hate when people are purposefully cryptic, but just know that while they’re scary, I’m not scared. And know that the awesome far outweighs the scary right now.
But because I feel bad about being cryptic, and because you’ve read this far . . . I’ll share one of the awesome things.
I’m running again. Like seriously running again. I’ve been off and on all year, but I have my eye on a May marathon, a special and sentimental one, so I don’t want to go into it half-assed or unprepared. I’m literally starting over from scratch. When I started training a few weeks ago, I could barely run five minutes without tiring. I’m up to 20-minute running segments now, but nowhere near the five hours (plus?) I’ll be running in May. It’s been humbling, extremely humbling. And you better believe that monkey-mind was chattering non-stop when I started, but then I remember that I did it before–I can do it again.
I can’t compare myself though to who I was a couple of years ago. She was filled with enthusiasm and excitement and a bit of arrogance too. I guess it was sobriety’s pink cloud equivalent. After the marathon, I grew a bit complacent in my running, aimless without a goal, and ran less and less. Ha! I was setting myself up for total running relapse . . . It was bound to happen. I used life and stress and grief as excuses to stop running; the same excuses I used to make for drinking. Instead of falling off the wagon, I had fallen off the treadmill.
When I started back running, in essence, I was at Day Zero. I still have that enthusiasm and excitement. I still feel a bit arrogant when I jump from a ten-minute running segment to a fifteen-minute segment. But I’m also remembering, rediscovering, how fun it was just to run and sweat and feel exhausted at the end of a run. And the music! Oh how I’ve missed just blasting the tunes and zoning out. What’s new this time? Spotify. Hello? Why did no one tell me about Spotify before? I’m in running playlist nirvana! The endorphins are really nice too. I highly recommend them.
Another awesome thing? The movie The Equalizer. I highly recommend it too. In one of my favorite scenes:
“I’m going to miss your stories,” one of the characters says.
“You have your own stories now,” Denzel’s character replied.
Thanks for being here, thanks for reading, and thanks for caring. I’m grateful for you. And I’ll see you soon. I promise.
So many stories of where I’ve been and how I got to where I am.
But these stories don’t mean anything
When you’ve got no one to tell them to . . .
Are you running? Do you like Autumn or Spring, or do you prefer Winter or Summer? Feeling creative lately? Seen any good movies? How in the world are you?