I am quitting my job and I am quitting my church and I am quitting my family and I am going to just go home, grab everything I can carry and start running.
Last night I had a bit of a meltdown. It’s been a rough month. And for every step forward, I feel like I took two back. Each time I feel back on my feet, something new comes to knock me over.
As small as it is, my apartment messed up my lease and charged me an extra $70. Waiting in the office for someone to actually take care of it, I literally started crying. I pulled out my phone to text Katy that I was not coming this week … I didn’t want to be around people; I just wanted to go home, curl up with YouTube (and junk food), and numb out until I fell asleep.
Looking at my text, before I hit send, I realized I would wake up. And when I woke up, nothing would have changed. I would have made one more emotional decision and taken one more step away from where I actually want to go.
So I deleted the text, finished at the office, and went to community group. Instead of bolting when discussion was over, I stayed and took my armor off. I got honest about where I am and how I feel with the elders who are members of our group. They encouraged me and invited me to come over for dinner anytime.
Once most everyone had left, I got honest with Katy. Where the elders were great encouragers, Katy gave me the painful truth I needed. She pointed out the lies I was believing and reminded me of the truths I know but don’t want to face.
Bleary-eyed with exhaustion, I left for home, did my 11 pushups, and crawled into bed. Tomorrow will be another day…
This morning I didn’t exactly spring out of bed… actually fought the alarm for half an hour. Eventually, I got up, pulled on my workout gear, and headed for the track. It feels great to be running again and I really enjoy the app I have started using so, despite the rain, I was excited to go.
As I was running, it reminded me of all those times I have wished I was a runner. I mean, I can run but I am not a runner. Jessica is a runner. She is training for a marathon while I am just hoping to make it through another 5K.
When I was younger, I read the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants and ever since I have just wished I could be a runner. To run away and find myself in miles and miles of trail. To leave behind whatever battle and start over.
Since I was always the fat kid, however, running wasn’t an option so I would look for other ways to run away. I was convinced that if I could just get glasses, or get braces, or get rid of braces, or cut my hair, or grow out my hair… if I could just change myself enough, I could have a fresh start. Better yet, if I could just move, which we did a lot in a military family. The next place we live, I will be wildly popular and have a real best friend.
Problem is, I did all of those things and it changed nothing. My new look didn’t give me a new life and none of our moves solved anything. I was a socially awkward, overweight, obnoxious girl with no people skills and no self-confidence … not exactly a friend magnet.
Just like this morning, when I went around a track 13 times and ended right where I started, running away isn’t the answer.
Because wherever I go, I am there.
And my family will still be my family.
Those two things I cannot change… and, when the emotions subside, I don’t want them to change.
And running away won’t raise my dead friend,
And it won’t make me lose weight,
And it won’t really solve any of the stress in my life.
Well, maybe the job stress … but I’ll just end up with a new job and new stress.
So there really isn’t a point to running away. There’s no restart. The life I have is the life I have and the choices I have made have gotten me to today. Where I am tomorrow will be based on the choices I make today.
It is time to quit… it’s time to quit running away.
What I can change, I need to take responsibility for and what I cannot change, I need to accept.
In everything, I need to press into community and realize that life was never meant to be lived alone.