Monday, March 12, 2012

Running Out

When I run I don't want to stop.  My weight, my separation, my stresses as a mother and teacher don't seem to factor.  My feet lift and land and I am transported into a different space and time.

I stated running when I was in grade 6.  I had never run competitively before that.  I remember that first run around the grounds of the my elementary school.  Most of the students couldn't make it all the way but I just flew.  I felt a surge of energy hit my body and felt delighted with my new found love.  When I got into junior high I had an inspirational gym teacher, Mrs. Hudson.  I will never forget her.  I used to see her running in the rain, snow and sun.  Whatever the weather she was out there running.  She encouraged me to keep active and she made me promise that I would never stop running.

Time passed, I got married, had children and I forgot Mrs. Hudson's words.  As a teen it was hard for me to understand why this women so close to retiring would spend the early morning hours of the day running up (a very hilly) Don Mills road.  Where did this desire come from and how did she maintain it? I don't know much of Mrs. Hudson's story but I can assume that she didn't run to look like a model, she didn't run because it was popular, and she didn't run to join a club.

On February 23rd, 2012 I lifted my feet and got ready to fly for the first time in years.  I remember being afraid to take those first few leaps because I thought I had forgotten how to run.  I found the image below and I use it as inspiration.  I remind myself that I am a runner.  That will never change.

Now as I lace up my battered running shoes I understand the compulsion, the desire and the need so much more.  I run because it brings my mind, body and spirit to a place where I can push the cant's, wont's, shouldn't, and couldn't beneath me.  When I run my tumultuous separation, my worries for my kids, my unending struggles run out before my desire to stop do.

What are you passion do you want to reclaim?

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Mapping it Out

My life has taken some turns but God has it all mapped out.

Lately, I have felt like a ping pong ball being blown about out at sea.  One minute I'm happy with my renewed love of running and the sense of freedom it brings.  The next I'm saddened by the loss of dreams and the reality of separation.  These feelings stir an uneasiness in me because the one thing I crave is stability.

Going through a separation I experienced a myriad of emotions.  At first I felt this incredible weight lifted from my shoulders.  I felt renewed strength.  I breathed in air that was filled with hope for a better future for my children and myself.  People are always surprised when I say this because it seems like I didn't really care about my marriage.  The reality is the farthest thing from that statement.  What most people don't realize is that I grieved the loss of my marriage as I watched my husband slowly turn into a stranger over the past 4 years.  I grieved the loss of my marriage when I realized that improperly treated mental illness robs not only the sufferer but the rest of their family of any sense of security or peace.  I grieved the loss of my marriage when I realized that I had to make a choice that put safety and security on one end and marriage on the other.

Though I don't regret the decision to separate I am disturbed by the havoc it can spur in my life.  Dealing with custody and access issues are complicated especially when mental health issues are involved.  I find that I constantly have to find the balance between the health and safety of my children and consistent involvement with their father.  There is so much uncertainty in what you can expect from a situation that your mind is tempted to always to go beyond where you are comfortable.

Through this process I am hoping that God will show me which turns to take and which ones to avoid.  Right now that is all I can hope for.