Saturday, February 23, 2013


I ran on trails, on streets, on a red bridge, through a city I love. It was just last week. Only one day required long pants and a cap. The rest were all blue sky and wine dark sea. One moment I laughed out loud, when I found myself coming upon a field trip of 6 year olds, whose sly teacher coincidentally sent them all running up the path just as I came in among them, and there I was, surrounded by running children.

I ran alone. I ran with my daughter. I listened to fog horns that really had no purpose at all in the clear blue days. I found myself swooning with eucalyptus fumes. I passed a dog run most days, and those dogs were so happy.

Uncertainty closes in on me, in a profession that walks half blind through the haze of an unwell health care system. Grief encompasses me a I mourn 14 years, as of Feb 22, without my Pop. That's most of the lives of my 2 oldest children, and my youngest was not yet born. Grief threatens to swallow me whole as I mourn the loss of my cousin, who died this morning, wrapped in the love of her family.

I ran today, now back home, through the marsh, with my daughter. Tonight we will eat crab caught in local waters. Life keeps on, and there is something about it that demands joy. Tomorrow I will run long.

I am a scientist, but find it significant that my father and my cousin died so close to the same day. Years apart, of course. But they had something very much in common: joy. Each day my father, who had more than his fair share of suffering, greeted the morning with song. Literally. It was somewhat annoying as a teenager. And yet I also loved this about him. Each day, my cousin, who had more than her fair share of suffering, greeted her days with laughter. I cannot remember one moment of gloom when with her.

She thought I was goofy to run so much.
I told her how when I am running a really hard workout or race, she often comes to mind and inspires me to push through.

I give thanks for the breath of joy passed on to me from Pop and from Linita. I suppose they are cracking jokes together right now, somewhere in the after life.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Sunny Side of the Street

Running in the bottom on a recent day of meteorologic confusion
I stopped for a moment to gaze, first to my right

Yin, February 2013

 and then to my left.
Yang, February 2013

And it struck me as a metaphor. This place where I stood was between such extremes. In the middle of the road, with my plans behind me. Or my pains behind me. Or my pants behind me. Depending on which lyrics site you believe. Between such extremes of dark and light that I began to wonder how to dress right for the constant change. I stopped but for a moment, to snap these photos. Then ran again, marveling at the heat combined with the annoying raindrops intermittently dotting my eyeglasses. And yes, I run with eyeglasses. See prior post re visual impairment.

Nothing points out the extremes of life like a teenager. And I have 2.9 of those that bless me every single day of my life. Nothing extremely changes your life like parenting. Nothing parents your soul like passion and decent food. Nothing feeds your passion like a curious mind. Nothing minds your Ps and Qs in an annoying fashion like the extraordinarily profitable corporation to which you report. Nothing reports truth like a cheeky five year old. Nothing is older than love, running, and parenting.

I dreamt last night that 3 large bears chased me. I tried to hide in a long, rectangular room with no exit. I was trapped against the wall, curled up quietly on the floor. The bears came in and the biggest one came right to me, and laid down on top of me, protectively, like a dog might. We fell asleep.

I was sure those bears would eat me up, wild things they were.

Someone wise asked, after I told of this odd night vision, "what is protecting you now in your long, narrow building?"

Another friend enjoyed the totemish quality of my dream.

My husband thinks what is scaring me is actually a positive force.

Anyhow, it was a nice run in the bottom.