On Accidentally Entering The Race Part 2.

October 1, 2011 § Leave a comment

In the past week or so I’ve written a lot. Well, started a lot of posts. And, evidently, not finished them. Eventually, I went back to paper to write the things that are too nonsensical even to write here. Which is when you know it’s bad.

This week has seen surges of movement in my life. Surges forward, which I will write about soon enough. But bile was building and building and stopping anything positive being written about the progress being made. Last night it came to a head and I lost my shit. Again.

This morning, the first of October, an indian summer was still sitting sweatily over Cardiff. I headed to the park, early enough to catch the last of the morning’s mist before it was burnt off into a late summer haze. But part of me also wanted to run with other people and not be so alone. Knowing that the race would be happening again this morning, I knew there would be people there, following their own demons around the river in laps. Knowing also that I would probably also be mistaken for a runner again, I kept my eyes to the floor, or the mid-distance ahead.

Nothing is more frustrating than not being able to articulate what’s wrong. Or anything at all. Not being able to write out even the most ludicrous thoughts that travel between your ears. The thousands of half-started sentences that cannot exorcise what I need them to, even if only in the instant of writing, instead prove that I am stuck. And with no way to write myself out of it, no way to write myself into a better story yet, I instead decided to at least start with what I know.

This morning as I ran, I repeated to myself the only thing I could say for certain. I echoed with every step forward: I do not accept this. I can relapse and relapse. Get worse and worse. Worry that I have given up. Worry that I don’t have the energy to keep trying. But at the bottom of it all, I at least have resolve. I do not accept this. 

While I avoided the gaze of the volunteer stewards and focused wholeheartedly on my new mantra, I calmed down a little. And by the time I had come back to the present enough to glance at another steward as I passed, I realised that they were clapping as I ran. Whether they knew what race I was running or not, a complete stranger was egging me on.


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