Running A(way)

Running; A way to sanity and away from insanity…

These past two weeks, have been some of the most difficult in my life. Through it all running has helped me maintain my center, relieve my anxiety, sadness, and overwhelm. During today’s three mile training run I discovered how much running has kept me sane.

After being blindsided by my cousin’s (brother’s) sudden death, then having to share this horrible news with my mother left me numb. So numb that my initial response was the inability to cry or physically move–Ironic for someone who is constantly moving. Shortly after sharing the news with my mother, I was able to shed tears and so many more have followed and are to come. I also found out that I had the extra responsibility of being named the executrix to his will.

As you may imagine my anxiety shifted into overwhelm! Along with my long list of responsibilities I had a bunch more heaped upon me when I was my most vulnerable. I wanted to run away. Away from the sadness, responsibility the pressure of doing the right thing being sure everyone was taken care of, but first I had to take care of me.

Self care for me includes, meditation, spiritual reading, my martial arts practice and running. The meditation, reading and martial arts required too much of my mental energy and although I continued with all those disciplines, running has been my great escape. I know for 30minutes to 2 hours all I had to focus on was the next step and next breath — This moment the only moment. I was able to cry (not pretty) mourn his loss, and try to run my anger into the ground.

After the days of the “hard running” I began noticing, dragonflies, butterflies, Cardinals, and pennies were found. I knew my cousin was safe on the other side and sending me messages. Running became a source of comfort.

I’ve been running on and off since 1991 first to prepare for my black belt, then occasionally to get into shape. It wasn’t until I was about to turn 60 that I gave myself the goal of running a half marathon, that I got serious about running. I didn’t realize until today that goal changed my life forever. It wasn’t finishing the half it was running, just running…

One Step, One Breath, This Moment; The only moment…

“Remember, Jonathan, heaven isn’t a place or a time, because place and time are so very meaningless.” From Jonathan Livingston Seagull, Richard Bach.

Run on,

G

Where I’m Lead…

I’ve always been surprised by where my intuition leads me. I try to listen to and follow its instructions as often as possible, but all too often I get lost in THOUGHT. Thankfully I’ve been clearheaded these past weeks post sixth dan test, and I’ve been discovering and rediscovering all sorts of wonderful gifts. First I found myself rereading Jonathan Livingston Seagull for the twentieth odd time. I was enlightened once again.

When I first stumbled upon JSL in the 70’s I was touched by the plight of Jonathan and his unconventionality. I felt we were kindred souls. At the time I felt like an outcast. Questioning the dogma of a religion I was raised with, and the conventional life so many of my friends were aspiring to. Like Jon I tried fitting in with the flock. I enrolled in nursing school to get a “good” job. So I could live day-to-day until I retired. Except I go Where I’m Lead, and that was to the door of a martial arts school .The rest they say is history!

This time I looked at the whole story of Jon and his accent to mastery and his passion for teaching. This hit me so hard between the eyes, I cried. It was as if I rediscovered myself . Then today I decided to look up Richard Bach and stumbled upon his blog! The man isn’t done teaching me yet!

Her race to learn had begun…

Ginnie

 

 

Old Friends…

I had lunch today with two of my old friends from nursing school. It never ceases to amaze me even after not seeing each other for  a year we  can pick up right where we left off. The rhythm of our conversations are the same, though the subject matter is vastly different. We’re no longer obsessing over having to perform a dry sterol dressing. Asking if the other could switch a baby sitting job or who’s up for pizza at A1? Now we truly are “old friends.”  We complain about the aches and pains that being fifty something bring. Our concerns over aging parents and the uncertainty of managing the crazy lives we lead.  There are more wrinkles and we look and act more like our mothers than we dare to admit. Yet, in someways its 1975-78 and we are Deb, Coll and Ginnie, missing Karen, Joanne and Pat. There are giggles,hugs and the subtle humor only the closest of friends can share and understand.

We spent twenty-four hours a day for three years together. I may have friends whom I’ve known longer or see more often. None of these friends share the bond that living, studying and working together brings. For three years we lived like sisters, we were a family.

I always think of the quote from Jonathan Livingston Seagull after every time I see  one of these amazing woman; “And in the middle of Here and Now, don’t you think that we might see each other once or twice?”  I guess its because these are not just friends for life, but Lifetimes…

 

Ginnie

 

Be…

With the craziness of the week behind me I headed to the bay to enjoy the sunshine, read and do some head clearing. The afternoon was perfect.  It seemed everyone in the park was on their own secret mission to Be… It was like someone turned down the speed of life – People strolled, read, flew kites and peddled their bikes aimlessly by me, as I sat observing this three dimensional painting.

Everyone seemed content and happy. There was a feeling of joy all around. It appeared to me that no one had any cares, and if they did they were put on hold. We were all just Being in the moment. Then as if almost on cue, my ipod started playing Neil Diamond’s BE, from Jonathan Livingston Seagull. Then the true visual symphony began as the gulls started to take flight in time with the music. WOW! What a moment, I still have goose bumps from the experience.

These kinds of experiences or God visits I call them when every sense is synchronized and time is suspended is when I realize what it feels like to have your spirit soar… to Simply Be… What a blessing this experience was for me, my wish is you too can BE…

Namaste,

 

Ginnie