Monday, January 30, 2012

The Virtue or Vice Of Prudence

When Is It Rational To Run Injured? Does It Matter If It's Irrational?

"Prudence is the virtue by which we discern what is proper to do under various circumstances in time and place." - John Milton
I am eleven weeks out from the Boston Marathon. If I weren't running Boston I'd probably be running a lot fewer miles and trying to get a real handle on healing a pesky injury that's been plaguing my existence since November. But Boston has no deferral option, the plane tickets are bought and paid for, and I can't possibly tell my 5 year-old that we won't be going to visit her Boston cousins after all.

So here I am, fully aware that what I'm trying to do is to hold the ship together, and on April 17th I will rest.

For most people, runners included, this doesn't make a whole lot of sense. When we're injured, we should stop...rest...heal. And, in a different situation I would agree, sort of. I've been known to try to run through injuries before, and sometimes it works out okay and sometimes it doesn't. Most runners have had this experience: They feel an injury coming on and keep running and it improves - miracle of miracles! And then there are the times you feel an injury creeping up behind you, and you continue to run and, well, things get much worse and you end up hobbling around for months regretting, with all your heart and soul, your foolishness.

The tricky thing about bodies is that they're unpredictable and some injuries are difficult to judge. Sure, a stress fracture is deal killer and you must stop running, stat. But others are much more vexing. I've had injuries that have gotten worse with rest. I've had injuries that were misdiagnosed.

In 2008 I was told that my running days were over - Over, for good. There was "nothing to be done" for me. I was proclaimed a lost cause, a sad story, a cautionary tale...see what running does to you? It turns you into a lame shadow of your former self before you even make it through middle-age. Don't go there. Don't run. Don't stress those poor fragile knees...Running is bad for you. Non-running friends shook their heads and raised their eyebrows in a "what did you expect?" way. All that wear-and-tear...All those years...all those miles upon miles.

And now it's 2012. I've run a few marathons, dozens of halfs and 10ks and 10 milers, etc. since that diagnosis of doom and, yes, I'm dealing with another injury. Part of my current situation is the result of an old climbing injury - yes, climbing not running - that I probably didn't rehab well 11 years ago. So, should I just do what would normally be rational and reasonable and stop?

I have chosen to push on and patch the ship when a leak appears, to keep pounding the boards back in place when they spring loose, - to hold the ship together until I can get it into port.

While many may view my actions as irrational, stupid, foolhardy, or shortsighted, on many levels they are entirely reasonable given the situation. First, I know what I'm dealing with as far as the injury and the long and short term consequences - That is, as far as those things can even be 'known'. I monitor it constantly (which makes me a little crazy and somewhat irritable at times) to make sure that things are improving rather than the opposite. I am receiving the best physical therapy I can find and afford - Physical therapy was my Christmas present this year - Oh joy! I'm receiving PT that seems to be helping me.

I wouldn't do this for just any race. I sat out a couple races earlier this year that I had registered for because pushing on in those instances would have been imprudent on so many levels. But in the case of Boston I have to weigh the pros and cons more seriously because it matters more to me. This may not be the case for everyone, but it is for me.

And so my reasonable self looks to Aristotle - my go to philosopher - for guidance and justification. The reasonable action depends on the individual, but for each individual there is A rational action (this is not a relativistic, it's all good view). Given who I am, and what enriches my life as a rational animal, I must decide what the prudent (prudence being the virtue I'm aiming at achieving) action is for me. There is AN answer, and the challenge is to discover it. The answer depends on who I am: my skills, my training, my injury, my experience. And when I consider all the key factors, I conclude that this is the best action for me.

But then I think of grander desires, perhaps wild dreams that may be less than rational and even irrational and passionate, and those too draw me in. Whether prudence be a virtue of strength and reason, or a vice of weakness and timidity, the answer is the same for me. I will go on until a can't or until I succeed. 

It is both reasonable (though never guaranteed) and passionate.
"Prudence is a rich, ugly, old maid courted by incapacity." - William Blake
"It is no less a feat to keep what you have, than to increase it. In one there is chance, the other will be a work of art. " - Ovid

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Funky Days


"Not life, but good life, is to be chiefly valued." - Socrates
There are those mornings when I wake up in a funk. There's no particular rhyme or reason to it, it just happens. Perhaps something is subtlety eating at me, or it's just a general feeling of ennui. Whatever it is, whatever its cause, on these days of funk I find myself out-of-sorts in some strange can't-quite-put-my-finger-on-it sort of way. On those mornings I sometimes, sometimes, don't even feel like going out for a run. I'm feeling 'blah' and running is not a 'blah' thing.

But then habit kicks in, and I do what I always do in the morning -> coffee, cookie, run, shower (the kiddo fits in there somewhere depending on the day), work...

Today I woke up with that vague 'blah' feeling, even though the sun shined bright and the air was springtime warm on a mid-January day. I put on my shorts, shirt, shoes and headed off for the trails sans watch. I didn't think about it, I just did it, and I didn't expect much other than an easy recovery 5 miles that I would just get through and get done and then move on through my ho-hum day. Blah.

The first few steps felt labored, forced, heavy, reluctant. But little by little I felt the 'blah" begin to lift from my shoulders, then my arms...my legs, my feet. My head and my vision began to clear.  My feet moved in short, light, quick steps. At mile 2 I stopped at the top of a hill that allows me to see beyond Longs Peak to the north, the Indian Peaks to the West, and clear down to Pikes Peak to the south. To the east, for as far as you can see, is big sky and golden plains rolling all the way to Kansas. I stood there looking, seeing, feeling the world on this day.


By the time I returned home I did not not want to go inside so I fetched my somewhat uninterested 15 year-old Aussie mix, switched my sneaks for my Five Fingers, and went for another mile or so, this was as much a walk as jog. I didn't want to stop...

And this hour of my day made all the difference on this day, for this person, for this life - This run was such a gift because it was so unexpected -  and I went off to class and spoke about Socrates and principles and things that matter and things that do not matter. And what I spoke, I felt.
"It is not living that matters, but living rightly." - Socrates

And I am so very thankful for the ability, freedom and will to run...To have found this thing that puts the world right for me...
"The true runner is a very fortunate person. He has found something in him that is just perfect."- George Sheehan

Monday, January 23, 2012

A Winter's Tale


“Who are we, who is each one of us, if not a combinatoria of experiences, information, books we have read, things imagined?” - Italo Calvino
In the depth of winter I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer. - Albert Camus

As winter presses on, many runners turn their attentions indoors during the long, cold, dark days of winter. Many resort to the "dreadmill" as the only/best option. I have run year in and year out through winters, tough or mild, solidly since 1986 (and earlier, but that's when I became more consistent). Over all my years of running I've only run on a treadmill twice: Once for a VO2 Max test for a Physiology class research paper I was writing at the University of Maine, and once for gait analysis during a shoe fitting at the Boulder Running Company (I ended up returning the shoes they recommended). I run outside, 6 days a week, every week, in snow, ice, wind, rain, groppel, whatever mother nature has in store. I'm not going to lie and say that I love it all, because I don't, especially wind, but I do it because that's what I do.

Over all my years of running I've lived in Upstate New York (lake effect snow is just yummy) where the sun never seems to shine. It's true. Cornell University has a state of the art telescope that it can use, like, 5 days a year. I've lived in Maine - "If you can't take the winters, you don't deserve the summers." Portland has a giant flashing temperature sign looming over the city so that you can see the -5 degree temp flashing for your whole 8 mile loop around the city. Thanks. I really needed to be reminded that it's stupid-bloody cold, and that I'm bloody-stupid for being out in it. I firmly believe that the municipal water supply in Maine is laced with a hearty dose of Downeast stoicism. I've run through Nor'easter and winters where the streets and sidewalks are chopped through 6 feet of accumulated snow and the town snow dump was the tallest geological point within 60 miles and doesn't completely melt until late August.

Now, however, I'm spoiled. I live in Boulder, Colorado. When my husband and I moved here we thought we had found paradise. We could rock climb all year round, if we found the right cliffs. And the running? Well, Boulder has it's reputation for a reason. But the fact is that it was 17 degrees and pitch dark when I went off for my 10 miler this morning. And that was actually pretty balmy for 6 a.m.  We usually have a good spell of solid single digit highs at some point during the winter, and usually several good dumps of snow. The snow removal plan relies heavily on the "solar shovel" to come along and make the snow magically disappear - which may or may not happen - so the roads and trails may melt out quickly, or not. Boulder is also a windy, windy place. And days with hurricane force winds happen about once a week (at least) in the winter and spring (depending on the year).

But I figure if the mail can get through, so can I. I have, however, succeeded in running on several days that the mail never made it.

Now, don't get me wrong.  I'm not making a judgement about treadmill running, and I'm not claiming to be a card-carrying member of 'team tough', but the fact is that I'm too much of a spazz to run on one. I can't run on a treadmill - they scare the bejeezus out of me! That belt starts moving, and I panic. Perhaps I've seen too many cartoons where some hapless critter is caught on that churning belt, spinning around and around for a painful eternity. No thank you. I just can't handle it.

I'm also too cheap and too lazy. I won't buy a treadmill: Too expensive. Gym membership?: Too expensive. And then if you have to go to the gym there's all the fussing-and-bothering: driving and dressing and undressing and showering and dressing again...and then more driving. All to go for a run? Sorry. I'd just never do it. I know that in some conditions you will have a better training run if you run on a treadmill rather than slip-sliding-away at a glacial pace outside. But even rational, reasonable argument falls on my deaf ears.

The fact is, I'm lazy and I'm cheap (mostly because I have no money), so I either walk out my back door and run, or I don't run. For me there is only one choice - I run outside. 

And, what  have I learned from this pigheaded laziness? That winter running can present the most magical and unexpected experiences. One morning I ran after a fresh snow fall, and the flakes on the trail glistened in rainbows. That doesn't happen every day. That was a special sort of snow. I've seen bald eagles sitting as still as the frost, 40 feet up on cottonwood trees, and I once rescued a new born calf curled up alongside the road in the snow. I've seen hundreds of pelicans glide together to a landing on a freshly thawed pond. And I've watched, with considerable fear and trembling, as massive snow squalls move out off the mountains toward the plains, where I am still 8 miles from home.

Oh, and I've learned from experience that: my lungs will not freeze (The coldest temp I've run in is -12F plus windchill); that, an ice encrusted face mask can actually be pretty darn toasty; that, you should always run out against the wind and back with the wind - but if the wind shifts, you better run fast and think creatively! I once stopped at the doggy poop bag dispenser at a trailhead and stuffed plastic newspaper bags under my jog bra because, well, certain parts were about to freeze off.

So go out on that cold and blustery day. If it sucks, come home. But if it doesn't you might experience something entirely new and it will open up your world and expand your horizons...

...And watch as spring reveals itself, in light green blades of grass poking through the snow and robins singing the sun rise, when running through the world opens time and space, and moments of eternity are grasped for an instant.


Enjoy the adventure
O, wind,  
If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind? 
~Percy Bysshe Shelley
 
 

Monday, January 16, 2012

The Virtue of Chronicness


How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives. - Annie Dillard 
Events in our lives happen in a sequence in time, but in their significance to ourselves they find their own order the continuous thread of revelation. - Eudora Welty
I've been at this blogging thing for one year. I've been at this running thing for...40 years. I've made more new running friends over this past year than I did over the preceding 39 years! Thanks, all of you, for making this so much fun. I think people either love or hate the blog - but I will continue writing what I find to be important, interesting, annoying, and/or perplexing for runners; seasoned runners, new runners,young or old, fast or slow, obsessed or more rational.

Today I want to consider what I will call the virtue of 'Chronicness'. Okay, this is a new word, I just made it up, and 'chronic' often has a negative connotation - but it needn't - I certainly don't mean it in a negative way, though it does have an edge to it - a bit of attitude, so to speak. I mean it in the following way:

chron·ic (ˈkränik) adj.
1. Of long duration; continuing: chronic long and/or continual running 
2. Lasting for a long period of time or marked by frequent recurrence: chronic daily running.
3. Subject to a habit or pattern of behavior for a long time: chronic running.

January is the month many people get bitten by the running/exercise bug, or resolve to be more consistent with their running. This typically lasts for about 3 weeks, and then the resolution bug buzzes off into the wind of good intentions and unfulfilled wishes. How do we do what Aristotle says we must if we hope to live a flourishing life?
“Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.” - Aristotle
Lots of newer runners wonder how it can be that I've run for so long. Some have even asked: Did I know that I would be running for so long when I began? Oy. No. But then, at 8 years old I had no way to get my head around that kind of time. I did it one day at a time and now I find myself looking back and thinking, well, that's quite a bit of running, but it really didn't feel like such a big deal as I went through it. It was 40 years of days - or perhaps, more fairly, my daily consistent running really began in 1985 - so that would be 27 years of days. Each of those days is just a day, and before you know it it adds up to something: a habit. Once you develop a habit, it just sort of happens. And, I might add, this is a lot easier than becoming courageous, or generous, or a good friend, or truthful...

So how does one do what Aristotle encourages us to do? Well, in running it's really quite simple and straightforward: Run, everyday, all year, year after year, and eventually it will become a habit. I suppose that for Aristotle this might fall under the virtue: Firmitas: "Tenacity" Strength of mind, the ability to stick to one's purpose. I'm adding the virtue of "Chronicness" to the long list of Aristotle's virtues - where we combine strength of mind with action (note: Aristotle does have a name for something like this - Akrasia).

At this point, for me, it isn't even a question of whether I will or will not run - I just do it - like eating my breakfast, taking a shower, brushing my teeth...running is just something I do. You do it when you really don't feel like doing it, you do it when it's inconvenient or even 'impossible', you do it when the weather sucks, you do it when you're a little (and even sometimes, very) sick, you do it day in and day out.

Don't think about 5 years from now, or 40 years from now, think about today and do it today. Find the time. We always find the time for the things we really value. William James argued that if you truly believe something you necessarily act on that belief. Belief itself is an action that brings about the action.
"Action seems to follow feeling, but really action and feeling go together; and by regulating the action, which is under the more direct control of the will, we can indirectly regulate the feeling, which is not." - William James
So, if you believe you want to run, that it's important for your life (mentally, spiritually, emotionally, physically), then you will act on that belief and run. If you don't run then you don't really believe that it's important. And by acting you also create the feeling. It's a complete whole. Or, perhaps, a vicious circle. Or, a chicken and egg problem. But, if you have the feeling, act. If you wish to act, act and create in yourself the feeling. And then you are whole. Now, isn't that simple ;)

Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.  - William James

Oh and one last thing - Have fun too!


Friday, January 13, 2012

I'm Angry As Hell...Therefore I Will Run

Today the story of Sherry Arnold's disappearance while she was out for a run in rural Montana took the saddest of turns. Her body was found. Apparently the police and FBI have one suspect in custody and are questioning another. I've been walking around my house feeling a free floating anger and rage build inside of me. I am so bloody pissed. I am so sad for Sherry's family.

As expected, this sends a shock wave through the running community, particularly among women who immediately feel more vulnerable and scared. These cases of horrendous violence shake us up. As I wrote earlier this week, this event won't change my behavior. I feel I do what I can to protect myself, and I am unwilling to give in to creeps.

But the comments online that I am seeing seem to indicate the belief that there's an increase in the number of cases of violence against runners. Some people claim that the street and trails are becoming meaner and that there are more psychos out there waiting to get you as soon as you come outside alone or let down your guard. I'm not at all sure that that is true. I did a little research trying to find some data on violence against runners/walkers/hikers and I'm having a heck of a time finding anything beyond a few isolated stories which are, of course, outrageous and enraging.

These horrendous things do happen, but they are very very rare. We need to be mindful without blowing things out of proportion. We need to take reasonable precautions (and those may differ depending on where and who you are) without overreacting. When we overreact the bad guys win. 

When I was a junior in college the son of a prominent politician and judge in the area threatened to kidnap me. I went to a small private college in a tiny village in rural upstate New York. He was banned from campus (he was suspected of rapes which he was never convicted of), but there he was. He cornered me in my dorm while everyone else was in the dinning hall and told me that one day he would pick me up when I was out running. Then he allowed me to leave. I told only my friends about his threats. There seemed little point to do anything else since it would only make my situation worse. For a short time I ran only with my best friend along the bucolic shores of Cayuga Lake - but I couldn't always rely on others being with me. I remember the day I went out by myself again. I was terrified but determined. How dare that a-hole rule my life.

Did I put myself at risk. Hell yeah. Some would say I was stupid, I was lucky, I was foolhardy. But what's the alternative, always living in fear? I kept running and I even lived in that village for close to a year after I graduated and I ran everyday. Nothing ever happened. Something terrible could have happened. Something terrible can always happen. I went back there last year for my reunion and ran one of my old routes, and had a very strange feeling in my stomach. That was a difficult time for me as a runner and as a young woman.

Today I do what I can to balance safety with freedom. I don't ever run with an IPod, not because I don't think it's safe, but because I don't like being removed from my experience. I like to be aware of everything around me. Everyday some crazy, angry, aggressive and/or clueless driver tries to run me down. I run as defensively as possible. I've jumped into ditches, over fences, and once onto the hood of a car to save my butt. I try to be aware of things around me. But I can't kid myself into thinking that that makes me entirely safe. If someone wants to get me, they will.

I do what I can to be safe, but I can't stop doing what I need to do for my life to be rich and full and my own.

I hope that we can be sad for Sherry's family, and hold her in our thoughts and prayers -  and feel angry and enraged that this happened to her, without believing that this is what life has become. We need to be aware but not fearful. We can't look at everyone as if they're a potential murderer and psycho because that is bad for us and for our society.

Tomorrow I will run and I will dedicate my run to Sherry. I believe that the greatest respect we can show for a runner is to run.
**************************************
Update: Monday, Jan 16. Sherry's body has not been found. She apparently was the victim of a 'hit and run' accident. Authorities, friends, neighbors, and family are now searching through the rural Montana farmland for her body. 

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

When Runners Disappear

On July 24th, 1997, a young woman named Amy Bechtel went for her daily run:
She was last seen in Lander, the central Wyoming town where she had moved with Steven Bechtel, her husband of 13 months, to join a community of ardent high- country athletes. Wearing black shorts and running shoes, she stopped at an art gallery about 2:30 p.m. to discuss matting one of her photographs.
And then the 24-year-old, petite, blond Olympic marathon hopeful vanished. http://www.charleyproject.org/cases/b/bechtel_amy.html
Now fast forward to January 7th, 2012:
There is a massive search effort underway in Sidney, Montana for a missing teacher. Over 1,000 people are scouring the town of Sidney, Montana for any signs of a missing teacher, Sherry Arnold. The 43-year-old woman has been missing since 6:30 am Saturday, when she left her house to go for a jog. On Saturday, authorities recovered her shoe in the northeast part of town.

Sidney, Montana is a very rural area in Eastern Montana near the Bakken Oil Field. This kind of thing is unheard of, and the tiny quiet town is in a panic. http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-728093
Amy Bechtel has never been found. Her husband was a suspect, but the fact remains that in many places a person can go missing and never be found. If you've spent anytime in the west, you've probably found yourself miles from from anything and anyone at some point. Anyone could snatch you up. 

Should this be a cautionary tale? Should women be concerned for their safety to the extent that they never run alone in remote areas again? Are these sorts of things happening with more regularity then they did 20 or 30 years ago? How should we, as runners, respond to such horrendous events?

Shortly following Amy Bechtel's disappearance I found myself just outside of Lander, Wyoming, for a long weekend climbing trip to the sun drench limestone cliffs of Wild Iris. My then boyfriend and I were enjoying the 'undeveloped' camping option that was both extremely remote and incredibly peaceful. I knew about Amy, and I also knew that I wanted to run while I was there. The whole situation did leave me fairly unnerved.

I've run through Harlem, and Queens, and down through Battery Park in the wee hours of a cold, dark morning, with grey clad men huddled over burning trashcans. I've run through cities abroad that I was probably too unfamiliar with.  I've run through remote areas of the Utah Hills outside of LasVegas while images of Flannery O'Connon's "Misfit" pranced through my head or the banjo music from "Deliverance" wormed it's way into my brain. Over all my years of running I've found myself in a lot of sketchy situations. But I continue to run - and I try to be smart about it - but the fact remains, that everyday that I venture out on my own I'm putting myself at risk. Is this stupid? Is this foolhardy? Should I be packing heat?

On that trip to Lander I did run, several times, with my then 2 year-old Aussie mix dog. I felt somehow safer with her by my side, but the truth of the matter, which I was all too well aware of, is that she could have done little to help me evade a nefarious character determined to do me harm. Should I have just stayed at camp? If something had happened would I be to blame? Would it be said that I had made a poor decision?

I hear many women express reservations about venturing out alone. Some think I'm foolish and/or stupid. We judge women and men differently on this. Many are quick to jump to the judgement that a woman should know better than to put herself in a vulnerable situation. While we may not 'blame' a woman for being the victim of violence, we do have this idea, at least in the back of our minds, that her choices might have been unwise. When something bad happens to a man, that judgement rarely surfaces.

There are bad, mean, twisted people out there, no doubt about it. But I don't think that it's really any worse than it's ever been (I'll have to do some research on this), but we are certainly more likely to hear about it when it does happen. All that said, I refuse to let those twisted individuals rule my life. Running, and freedom it represent and allows, is too important to me.

We make many choices that put us at risk. Most of us don't freakout about driving a car, though the statistics concerning highway fatalities should be sobering. But we don't say, well highway fatalities are going up, and so it would be foolhardy for me to drive to work. No, we accept those risks - and who would say, after someone gets into a crash - "Well they put themselves in that vulnerable situation. What did they expect?".

I'm not saying that people are making these judgements in either the case of Amy Bechtel or Sherry Arnold, but it does cause women runners to be just a little more afraid to go out on their own. But it's important that we not read too much into these cases. Of course it could happen to me. But do I want to live my entire life with that fear?

I know that I don't. It seems that Amy and Sherry would probably agree.

Now, go to the link below, scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on "This belongs on CNN".   http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-728093

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Plunge Into the Sublime Seas

 "Be not the slave of your own past. Plunge into the sublime seas, dive deep and swim far, so you shall come back with self-respect, with new power, with an advanced experience that shall explain and overlook the old." - Ralph Waldo Emerson
Running allows me to release a lot of the demons that sometimes possess my soul. But some demons are very tenacious. And so I will work this year to release these remaining demons that often return with me even after trying to outrun them, pound them out, sweat them out, or release them into the wind.
My two most tenacious demons are self-doubt and guilt.  
When I am running I forget about these insidious creatures. More often then not, I am entirely tuned into the moment, not the past or the future. I rarely question my ability to finish a long run while I'm in the midst of it. I don't question why I'm doing it. I don't feel guilty for taking this time for myself. I'm okay with it all. This is what I would call happiness - Eudaimonia - a deep satisfaction that I'm doing what I should be doing at that moment.  
In those moments of awareness and contentment I feel that I have plunged into the sublime sea.
And then I get home. I look at the clock. Oy. I've been gone that long? I immediately feel I've taken too much time for myself. I feel guilty. I assume everything my husband says, every facial expression that he makes, reflects a tiny bit of annoyance. Oh, he puts up with it, I tell myself, but he's not happy about it. He assures me that he is not upset. I don't believe him. Not for a second. I tell myself that I deserve this time, but I don't buy it. I don't believe myself.
Why? Well I think it's rooted in self-doubt - and it's a vicious circle. I mean, how can I justify all the time I spend running? I'm not very good. I'm not very fast. I don't do heroic things. And, I'm certainly not making any money with all this time spent running and running and running. In fact this isn't just a waste of time it's a waste of precious money that could be spent better elsewhere. All those running shoes! All those entry fees! And let's not even talk about all the physical therapy that is required to keep this ol' gal on the road. So, I've been asking myself this 'how can I?' question for years and years - and while I have answers, they still don't silence the guilt and self-doubt that rears it's ugly, defensive, combative head when I walk in the door after a run. 
What's my bloody problem? I don't think I'm alone on this, though I think: a) Women are more prone to it, and b) we each have our individual demons/issues to deal with.
So here's the problem - I'm looking for someone else to tell me that it's okay, that I'm not wasting my time. That I'm not a sucky runner, or a sucky writer, or a sucky climber, or a sucky mother, or wife, or teacher... for all those things are so important to my existence and my identity. But it wouldn't matter if everyone I knew told me how awesome and brilliant I am, I would never believe them. 
It is up to me, and me alone, to face this demon which has been with me since childhood. I will choose to plunge into the sublime sea, and return with new power and self-respect. I think I can explain the old, but now I need to create the new.
Now, I am going for a nice long run, and I will not feel the least bit guilty about it!

The Things That Change Us

“The dangers of life are infinite, and among them is safety.” ~ Goethe Sometimes we never "go back" to what we were before....