Monday, November 21, 2011

Moving On, Or Not

"You have to forget your last marathon before you try another. Your mind can't know what's coming."
-Frank Shorter

I can't seem to let this go. The moment I finished New York I told myself "never again." Which is really sensible. Out of the 4 marathons I have now run, 2 were excruciatingly heart breaking. It is like someone who has a knack for finding bad love or tainted sushi. You would think it would only take once to cure you. This particular disease has a poor prognosis, though, evidenced by the fact that I signed up for another blessed marathon.

Home is nice, and I do feel content with our decision to stay. But the realities of day to day existence do seem to be eager to declare themselves since we decided not to move on. Currently, night shift has a few things to say, like "I really couldn't care less about your headache and nausea. Here are 5 admissions." Actually, the ER doctor said the last part and I just felt sorry for myself and thus injected the cold indifference, which is how I picture Night Shift to be if animate. Cold and indifferent.

On nights, even when working with your own ailments, your self-pity dissolves fairly quickly as you witness the much-worse suffering of those you are treating. This happens in marathons too, actually. Someone is always suffering more or battling a greater problem (lack of limbs, blindness, extreme age) (I mean I think I even saw some 43 year olds out there on the course). So with night shifts and marathons, whining is usually abruptly replaced with chagrin.

Today I ran in the rain in the redwood forest. Home. It is padded with redwood droppings right now, which is like running on pillows. The post-marathon period allows for practicing mindful running. Just allow the body to heal and while doing so, notice the smell of redwoods in the rain, dodge the mud and banana slugs, and plot your next race. Hmmm, I do not suppose plotting the future is very mindful. I am an imperfect meditator at best, and an obsessive future-planner at worst.

As I move on, I find myself simultaneously settling more deeply into the patterns that sustain me. As I move on, I am finding clarity of purpose. Love, imperfection, doctoring, piano, and awareness of what is here, now.  And what is coming on May 6, 2012.


  1. What Marathon? Avenue of the GIANTS?
    BTW....I love your blog!

  2. Thanks Lisa. Yep, Ave of the Giants. We will see how it goes....

  3. Forgetting the past gets easier as you get older; I know. Looked at pics from the Avenue of the Giants -- WOW! No that's something to look forward too and then not forget. This was another great post.