Journey to Acceptance

Sunday morning. 6:25 am. I step outside our building and stand for a minute in the darkness that lies between nighttime and daybreak. I pause as I gauge whether this Utah morning is going to welcome me, take me in, and fill me with life, or whether she is going to push me back, making it hard to breathe and turning my legs to lead. Up until now we’ve been playing a game of push-pull, alternately accepting then rejecting being brought into each others’ lives. This morning, however, I feel embraced by the darkness, as if we are both too sleepy to put up too much of a fight. So I move forward with my plan.

I take a deep breath and shove off for my first outside run in a couple of weeks. It feels unnatural to me to have spent so much time away from the pavement, and I relish those first steps that carry me away from the routine of daily life, and take me away on my own mini adventure. For the next 80 minutes, my time is purely my own. I am free to think about and see the world in whatever manner I please, just as I am free to speed up or slow down my pace based only on whatever it is my body and mind want/need at any given moment.

It feels like a courtship, this pounding of my weight against the roads and sidewalks of this place. I strike with my foot and she fulfills her promise of supporting me on to the next step. My steps are slightly tentative, as I am not sure yet what awaits me around the next corner, or behind that upcoming building. I do not know this place well enough to trust it, and I think the feeling’s mutual. This morning feels different, though. This morning, we are at least having a conversation.

So I keep going. I pass my usual turnaround point and go further, knowing that we both need this to take our relationship forward, one step at a time. My body starts to get tired, and my legs can feel the difference between the pavement and the soft, padded treadmill. It is a satisfying pain, however. The type of pain you know came from effort. I check my breath, and its steadiness proves to me that I’m starting to become more comfortable with the change in altitude. It took months, but I guess that’s not surprising. Acceptance does not come overnight.

By the time I turn the last corner and see our building approaching (or is it me approaching the building?), the sun has broken through and is bouncing off of every surface. There is not a cloud in sight, and the brightness of the sun combined with the exhilaration of just having run that hard for that long made everything seem saturated with so. much. color. I quickly caught my reflection as I ran past the door of a nearby coffee shop and was surprised, but pleased, to see that my lips were slightly turned upward.

I stopped running, and took a deep breath before walking back into the world I left earlier this morning. The world dominated by the two loves of my life; my beautiful son, and his beautiful father. I open the door, and the three of us are one again.

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One Response to Journey to Acceptance

  1. rodney says:

    Most eloquent.

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