Today, after reading all the stunningly supporting and inspirational responses to my two previous posts this week, I got my sluggish bum out the door for my third run of Week 1.
In spite of being unable to procure my much-needed inhaler in time for this jaunt (don't worry, I should have it in time for the next run), I was still pretty optimistic. I live in the Canadian prairie, and winter is the dominant season. Spring seems to be about 3 weeks long, followed by a couple of months of summer, before winter takes hold again. Here, the spring seems to come belatedly, in fits and starts, with winter begrudging every moment the loss of frozen power. We get warmer days of above-freezing temperatures, with snow melting in rivulets down our roofs and along our yards and sidewalks, sometimes in near torrents. Then, a day or two later, things cloud up again, and we get several more inches of the white stuff. Spring doesn't "really" come and take over until around May.
This week has been just like that. Major snow one day, then major melt the next, with any liquid water freezing into skating rinks every night. When I went out today, it looked for all the world like a full Winter-Wonderland Day. Deep snow in drifts along the paths, and many areas of the paths covered in hard-pack snow where others have already trod it down.
But looks can be deceiving. It was actually quite warm, and I got to leave my hat and gloves behind, plus I felt like I could breathe pretty well. The sun was beaming down, with a cold breeze to keep it all fresh and bracing.
And I noticed as I ran that the bare trees weren't exactly bare. Their branches are covered with little hard pellets - unopened buds - which someday very soon will open and show their bright verdant renewal.
I felt like that myself. After my long break from running, I am back at the beginning starting over. I am unsteady and out of shape, and it hurts in various places while I trounce along. I definitely lack any personal visual appeal out there - not looking or feeling flowery for certain!
But.... Having done this once before, I know it is only a matter of time. Just as those hard little buds will open and show the exuberance and renewal of leaves in spring, so to will I blossom soon. I will get stronger and faster, I will be able to breathe more easily, I will regain my health and strength.
They are a visual reminder of my own internal promise. And they keep me going. It turned out to be a really great run!