Posts Tagged ‘running’

How do other people do this?

March 3, 2017

Regular readers and those who know me “beyond the blog” know that knitting helps keep me balanced. I love the creativity and challenge, but the repetition and focus help to quiet my mind — and I’m convinced, make me a better person.

I love having something to concentrate on — to do — during life’s “down times.” Waiting for a medical appointment, watching TV, sitting around talking after supper, or riding a bus, train, or plane.

My daily morning run serves the same purpose — getting out by myself, moving, breathing. A psychologist friend once explained that I’m not “in relation” to anyone during that time — I’m not a mother, wife, daughter, consultant, sister — so I can just be me. Makes sense. As my favorite poet-artist, Brian Andreas of Storypeople, conveys in this “story” that hangs by our back door.


Go to his site and look at the prints. They’re wonderful.

The power of these two habits has become abundantly and viscerally clear in the past day. I used the last of my yarn on the Gidday Baby sweater on yesterday’s flight.

I hadn’t brought the next skein from home. Ah well. I still had my book and running stuff in my bag, which I’d checked through to my “final destination” because the flight was totally full.

But my flight was canceled, and I ended up flying into another city and renting a car to drive to my “final destination.” However, my bag — which I’d taken a photo of just in case — never arrived.

 And, despite this lovely photo, it didn’t and still hasn’t. It’s not even been located, according to the automated customer service system.

So I find myself without my knitting, without my running stuff, without my clean clothes (except for new underwear from Walgreen’s – yes, 2 pack of cotton bikini), without my library book. Except for the undies, I haven’t had time to remedy any of these situations. I’m feeling the most out-of-sorts — downright cranky and occasionally weepy — that I have in quite a while.

So I wonder — after a very long and busy day, how do people do this life thing without knitting or running?

Love on the Street

August 30, 2013

I don’t usually take my phone when I run in the morning. I don’t want to be connected or reachable.

But recently I’ve been walking, instead of running, in an attempt to let an injury heal and have started listening to some of my favorite podcasts. Since my phone is also a camera, I sometimes get to capture images that catch my eye. Like today…


Before Dawn

May 21, 2011

I haven’t always been a morning person. A poster of Snoopy draped over his doghouse declaring “I think I’m allergic to morning” hung in my bedroom throughout my teenage years. As the mother of teens, I have to wonder whether it’s physically possible for a teenager to be a morning person. But I digress….

Nearly every morning for the past decade or so, I’ve woken before everyone in the house and slipped out the door for an hour or so of movement — usually running but sometimes walking. Most days I’m alone although Wednesdays are reserved for a walk with Liz, a sister-friend from childhood (4th grade at the Pleasant Street School) who lives 1.5 miles away.

As I run through the streets, my mind kicks into gear. Sometimes I let thoughts pour out and flow where they will. Like someone gathering seashells — picking up each one, considering it for a moment, then putting it aside into a pile, perhaps to be gathered later or perhaps to be washed back into the sea.

Sometimes I mentally grab a topic and mull it over — thinking of conversations that I need or want to have (or wish I’d handled better), organizing a work project, drafting something I need to write (and hoping I’ll remember it by the time I get home). Always I pray, thanking the good Lord for getting me up and out, for a body that works even when achy or slow, for a safe place to run, for my many blessings, especially those still sleeping at home. And then there’s my list — friends, family, people I’ve never met (friends’ parents or siblings, colleagues, even world leaders) who may need a bit of extra help during the day — I pray that they’ll feel peace, strength, love, courage, and grace when they need it the most. And really, who can’t use a little of that each day?!

Of course, there are mornings, especially in the dark days of winter when the sun doesn’t rise until after 7 or when I’ve only had a handful of hours of sleep, when I’m tempted to stay in bed. But I know that if I don’t spend some time with just myself, I’ll feel unsettled for much of the day.

A few years ago, I discovered a poem that captures perfectly what I’d, until then, been unable to explain about why this morning routine is so important to me. This quirky print hangs by my back door.

Before Dawn

I’ve always like the time before dawn
because there’s no one around to
remind me who I’m supposed to be, so
it’s easier to remember who I am.

Brian Andreas of StoryPeople

When a friend who’s a developmental psychologist saw the print, she said, “Oh, of course, you’re not ‘in relation’ to anyone at that point.”  Exactly. I’m not a mother, wife, worker, sister, or friend. All those are part of me, but for an hour or so before dawn each day, I’m just me.

Random Thoughts of a Knitter in June

June 5, 2010

1.  Now that it’s warm enough to knit outside, I find myself loving Misti Alpaca Hand Paint Lace (color #01) more and more.  The subtleties of the color changes are much easier to see in bright light.  See?

Cleite lace shawl in sunshine

2. Still haven’t mailed the log cabin baby blanket to Michael’s teacher.  I really must get her address before school is done for the year.  In the meantime, I’m trying to enjoy looking at it instead of thinking, “Haven’t you mailed that yet?!”

3.  The approach of the last day of school is a tremendous source of excitement when you’re 11 and finishing 5th grade or when you’re nearly 15 and finishing 8th grade (and have an all-day field trip, field day, and “graduation” to look forward to). Not so much if you’re a high school sophomore with a heavy course load and 5 final exams between today and June 21.  And it doesn’t help when your brothers gleefully count down the days.

4. I just may have to give up on the recently discovered stash of wool that I found in the knee wall upstairs. After cleaning and drying, I discovered that it had been nibbled by (brace yourself) moths sometime over the past 13 years. I’m not above joining the occasional broken piece of yarn, but I think this might be too much. Will write more another day.

5. I really need to get to sleep earlier if I’m going to get up early enough to run more in the morning.  Must just force myself out of bed when the alarm goes off.  Snooze button, you seem like a friend, but you are not!

Size 9s

May 14, 2010

Nearly every morning, I get up before anyone else in my house and slip out for a run.  I don’t track distance (really) and only roughly do I track time.  The important thing is that I’m out by myself for a while — moving, thinking, praying, mind-singing, mulling — and that I get home by 7:00 so I can wake the troops, prepare meals (3 breakfasts, 3 lunches), and get all children out the door at the appointed times (7:25, 7:38, 8:00).

I’d be remiss if I didn’t note that my run always ends at the neighborhood Starbuck’s, where I get a medium bold for sipping on the 1/4 mile cool-down walk home.

Occasionally the lovely routine is disrupted. Sleeping through the alarm is the most common culprit. But this morning I could not find my running shoes. Anywhere. I always (well, almost) leave them by the back door.  Gone.  Checked all the obvious spots — by front door, bedroom, bathroom.  Nothing.

Ah, yes, then it hit me. The still-sleeping teenage daughter whose feet are the same size and who has started to take an occasional run herself and who is forever misplacing her own items of clothing, despite the fact that most of it is strewn across the floor of her room.

running shoes under dirty laundry










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