Notes From A Brief Silence
A rainy day outside my window and Noah sleeps. A miracle. The child must run on solar energy, because he is relentless on sunny days, tearing up the house, singing at eviction-level volumes in our tiny apartment and defiantly touching every off-limit item until I manage to peel my body out from bed, shower my sealed eyes open and fall into our routine which brings marginal amounts of sanity throughout the day. Unfortunately, with outdoor parks and long walks around the neighborhood being a good chunk of our day, that routine falls flat on its face if the weather is bad. Like today. But so far we are managing. Laundry, dishes, vacuuming, all made into games for his pleasure, and then the other kind of playing with actual toys, a tuna sandwich lunch (minus the tuna that he picks out of the bread), one story then another, and incredulously a nap. Only cloudy days seem to afford me such a luxury. It’s happening right now as I sit here typing in the next room ever so gingerly, appreciating the white noise of the nearby highway keeping Noah fixed in his rainy-day slumber.
Dad tells me that it’s beautiful and sunny there outside of Toronto, and that reassures me a little bit. Our weather systems seem to be connected, so I hope it is coming this way, and not the other way around. Every time I look out over that wet and misty sky I feel my heart sink a little at the idea that in a few short months we will be moving further west, past the mountain shield, to where you pay for gorgeous summers with endless winters of rain and gray. Possibly not the best fit for me given my roller coaster melancholia. Investing in an indoor sunlight lamp seems like a real option right about now.
In other news of not so grand importance, I’ve been running again. It was only a matter of time, and inevitable, really. Running just doesn’t go away. It sticks to you like head lice and makes you itch all over until you do something about it. I can’t tell you how much I appreciated, almost thanked, winter for all the black-ice excuses she gave me to stay warm inside my parent’s house, cuddled up with a box of President’s Choice Concertino cookies. Far, far better than making frozen sweat under layers of leggings. I scoffed at all the winter runners and quietly tsk tsk’d them under my breath. Obviously they didn’t care about their fragile ankles or their freezer burned lungs. How irresponsible of them. But winter has officially left me and took all my reasons not to lace up with her. All the summer runners came out in force the moment the sun broke through the gray, and suddenly that tell-tale itch demanded scratching again. I tried to shake it off, headed to church only to find the sermon hijacked by some guest speaker from World Vision who basically challenged the entire congregation to run a marathon for water-wells in Africa. I kid you not. So here I am again, doing not what I do best, but doing it all the same.
People often ask me why I run, and aside from being able to eat copious amounts of dark-chocolate with nary a feeling of guilt, the thing I gain most is a personal sense of self-control. Nothing is more satisfying than telling my brain what to do, instead of the other way around. Leading up to a jog it tells me how tired I am, how I deserve time off, that I shouldn’t work so hard. And then later it tells me entirely different things when I look in the mirror. These mind games are very much unappreciated. If I can just get my shoes on and hit the pavement, then I win. That little voice has to shut up and I get a chance to feel like everything in life is possible, simply because I willed myself to move my body and finish what I started. The ability to act on intention is an awesome power, one I haven’t perfected yet, but I suppose that takes training too.