Saturday, August 27, 2011

#356: A Running Dream Come True

I have had a recurring dream about running. It's early morning. the mist is just burning off the Bluegrass. In my ears are the sounds of birds and cicadas. My feet pat the blacktop road as I glide between the trees and the plank fences that line the horse farms. My breath comes steady and easy as the sun warms my face. I've had that dream quite a few times. I had it while I was sick. I had it when I was walking the track over the basketball court at the gym. I had it the day I ran my first mile after treatment. I had it after I ran my first 10K. And this morning, I lived it.

I met with four other runners at 7:30 in the parking lot of a church just east of town. The sun was coming up behind the corn field that grows behind the church. We had all met one another on Twitter and Facebook, but I had never seen any of them before. We chatted comfortably as we compared water-bottles and I silently noted that they were all young enough to be my children. I realized that I wasn't going to be running with this group. I was going to be running behind them.The parking lot was full of empty cars. There were a lot of runners already out on the road.

Before long, runners started coming up the drive. They had started about an hour before. Some even earlier. The toughest of them had already run 10 miles. They were going to lead us out for another 10. What amazing, generous people. They had left water and sports drinks in ice filled buckets along the route, and there was a large cooler there in the parking lot. The early morning runners came in, changed their shirts, exchanged greetings and introductions, and we were on our way. How nice was the run?



My God, but I love my Kentucky. It wasn't long before the strong runners pulled away over the next hill and I trotted along for a short while with two of my fellow newbies. After about a mile, I was feeling pretty good, so I pulled ahead and ran alone. Such breathtaking country. I saw thoroughbreds waking up in the pastures. A heron viewed his domain from atop a fence post that stood inexplicably alone in the middle of a bluegrass field. Birds called to me from the trees and bugs sang in the grass as I trotted past. I thanked God for the chance to run this road. For letting me live long enough to run it. For letting me live in a place where such a place was a fifteen minute drive from my bed. Every runner should have a chance to have a run like this.

One of my fellow runners blogged about the trip from her perspective. Krissie and Erin stopped to smell the clover more than I did, but they still managed to catch and pass me in the last mile. I had managed my strength badly, and by 8.3 miles, I was spent. I think I walked more than I ran those last two miles, but I was running at the end, about 20 seconds behind the two ladies I had imagined as my daughters two hours ago. I was irrationally proud of their strong finish. I've always lived with one foot in my fantasy world anyway. Might as well gloat about my imaginary kids.

One of the experienced runners, Eric recognized me from my internet posts. "You're a cancer survivor, right?" "That's right," I answered. "That's pretty cool." "It sure is." This morning, it is especially cool.

I came home exhausted. Mrs P was sitting in the big chair in the den, enjoying the peace and quiet. I went out to the porch to put my soaking clothes on the drying rack. When I pulled my socks off, I saw two big blisters on the fourth toe on each foot. The blisters were about the size of the end of my pinky finger, near the top, outside surface of the toe, just past the end of the little piggy that cries "wee, wee, wee!" They hadn't broken and didn't hurt at all. I didn't know they were there till I saw them. I will take good care of them, and hope a pair of funny little callouses form. I like the kind of blister that doesn't hurt.

Yes, I made some mistakes this morning. I started out too fast. I wanted to run off on my own, and missed a chance to pet a horse's nose. I pushed too hard on the climbs and burned out before I could complete the run. But I started. And I finished. And in between, I traveled through a dream. Oh, thank God for such a place, such a day, such a life.

Peace,
Pennsy

No comments:

Post a Comment

There was an error in this gadget

Label Cloud

mrs p Cancer running lifting weights LIVESTRONG at the YMCA treadmill weight nutrition depression God Living Strong at the Y injury YMCA dogs mom walking radiation Weight Lifting cardio friends program theatre body fat long slow run love One for the Five aches elliptical race resistance bands stretching 5K Acting Jeff Galloway chemo doctor family mental health Church Pittsburgh Marathon bluegrass fundraising inspiration patience personal trainer recovery Flying Pig Marathon Jesus Johns Striders Race Report Run the Bluegrass Half Marathon bipolar frustration kentucky knees measurements morning promatx yoga Christmas Marathon Pennsy's Greatest Hits cats clothes heart rate hope lance armstrong life molly poetry rest side effects steelers swimming 10K Actors' Guild of Lexington Blog CT Scan Coach Carrie PET Scan cross training exercise fear feeling good groin healing ice cream livestrong nausea powerlifting run/walk/run stair climber surgery Cancer Fighter Cold Gear Hills Iron Horse Half-marathon Job LSR Mum Nike+ Shamrock Shuffle 3K achilles advent arboretum bmi bodyweight exercises changes charity circuit training cycling dad deadlift diabetes encouragement experts give up goals horses interval training jake kettlebells lean body mass new rules of lifting pacing personal best plateau prayer recumbent bike research shoes sleep strength teeth therapist toe video Blood Easter Endurance Funeral Garmin 405 Homecoming House Insurance Juicing Keeneland Legacy Night PR Pennsyltucky Pittsburgh Relapse Run This Town TRX Training Values aflac arnold ben-gay bench press chafing christian compression shorts dentist dreams faith fat fatigue foreclosure good day half marathon hospitality javarunner john's run/walk shop lou schuler new year nurse pains peg tube powercage progressive resistance. racing rain rapture reboot runners world squat sun block supplements team pennsy tired weather will rogers work #3rightThings 9-11 ACSM AIDS Aquaphor Blessings Bluegrass 10K CSN Cancer Boy Cedar Hill Charles Dickens Class of 82 Classes Colby Road College Compassion Courage Crowdrise Cystoscopy Dee Diet EFM Epiphany Fall Fartlek Fat Man Fat Sick and Nearly Dead Frankfort Gadgets Gramma Grampa Gratitude Grete Waitz Guest HITT HIV Hell Holding Hands Holy Saturday Homer Horse Capital Marathon IVP Ice bath Jacuzzi James Taylor Jesus wept Joe Cross John Izzo Joy KY LaDonna Leg Day Lent Lessons Lexington Little Pennsy Mental hospital Midsummer Night's Run Mindfulness MobileFit Negative Splits Old Frankfort Pike Pilates Podrunner Pre-race Priorities RICE Railrunner 10 Miler Random thoughts Resurrection Reunion Run Bob Run Run Report Run Review Run for the Gold 3K Running Form Running for Sabrina STUPID Shakespeare Skip Brown Speed Spinning Summer Of Speed Sunrise Supersets Tao Te Ching Thank You The Wall Three Right Things Toxic Passenger UK UK basketball Urine Urologist Victory Walk of Shame Warrior Westminster Whole Foods Wind Words Zumba ace bandages addicted agony alwyn cosgrove america anger antibiotic anxiety awake back baseball blood clots blood pressure body glide bonhoeffer books brad calories chinup colonoscopy consistency crazy cycles dentures dip dr. google dumbbells elevation facebook failure farts feet fight for life fitness forgiveness frankenpennsy fun getting started glucosamine glutes goal gremlin grenz grumpy hair hamstrings hiccups high school hot ice incarnation indian food jogging john lennon joint legacy trail liniment lunges machines maker's mark mapmyrun.com medicine ball meds mercy motivation motley fool music nature neighborhood new balance nike noah numbers pennsyltuckian periodization persistence phlebitis postmodern prison professional boundaries progress psychiatrist pullups pushups quads ramble rememberance renewal road running ronnie coleman rowing safety sauna scan-ziety sexy shopping shorts shower sick sleepless snow socks spandex star trek statistics steam room steroids stiff strained muscle strap strength training supination support surgeon survive swackett swiss balls table technology tempo terry bradshaw testicular torsion text thai food that's fit the five thighs walk breaks warm up water fitness water jogging weak wedding ring wellness wife winter workout writing yardwork