Four Weeks – An Eternity

“A large portion of the aging process occurs between the ears.” – jb

Monday, January 13th, will be four weeks since I last laced up the running shoes–an eternity for this restless soul. I’ve gotten nothing but encouragement, well-wishes, and suggestions on how to fill my time, yet I can’t help glance out my office window every now and then and imagine a steady, flowing stride in the snow.

An optimist by nature, I can’t deny that over the past four weeks I’ve wondered what life would be like without running. The larger question has become what does anyone do if the passion they wake to perform each day is suddenly taken from them, be it music, woodwork, writing, counseling, laying brick? How would you fill the void?

I spent time with my 91-year-old mom yesterday and she is still teaching me life lessons. Active and independent until she was 85, she is now confined to a wheelchair, on a restrictive diet, and goes to dialysis three times a week, yet she never has a bad word and is the most pleasant person you’d ever want to meet. What room do I have to complain about a little thing like a groin injury, or that I had to drop out of a race?

What I’ve learned from my mom is that you have to learn to adapt. One reader commented that I will have more time to write. Well, that is true. This injury has given me more time to edit a story collection I got back from an editor, and time to write a new short story. So yes, there is an upside. It is never a good thing to be dependent on one thing for happiness. Be versatile, and seek new interests.

Of course, I’ve come to rely on running to nurture my writing and creativity, but who am I to complain? Adapt or be miserable? Best to adapt! I learned that from a 91-year-old guru.

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About Jim Brennan

Jim is a Philadelphia-based writer, author, poet and editor for the Schuylkill Valley Journal.
This entry was posted in Health, Running, Writing and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Four Weeks – An Eternity

  1. gorunjess says:

    Jim,
    I’m hitting a month of no running myself-nursing an injured IT Band and trying to stay mentally well without the drug of running. I’m filling my time with lots of yoga, weight lifting and swimming. I have faced the awful thoughts of what life would be like without running and I’ve decided that I’ll do whatever it takes to continue to run. Hence the physical therapy I’m starting this afternoon. Be well and know you are not alone in this difficult place!

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    • Jim Brennan says:

      Jess, thanks for your uplifting message. I’m scheduled for an MRI next week. Meanwhile, I visited a chiropractor last night and go back tomorrow. Like you, I’m doing my yoga but will need to join a pool soon if I’m unable to find another form of cardio. I be pulling for you to have a fast and full recovery. We will both run again, just get healthy first. jim

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  2. LB says:

    What would we do without our mothers?? I am so glad that you are still learning from and loving yours!! And how great that you have been able to write a new story and edit others.

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  3. I’m sorry to hear that you’re still not running. I think it’s great that you are taking the break your body needs though – I know myself that this can be really hard to do. My physio recently asked me to cut my mileage for two weeks, and I found that hard, as running is such a huge part of my life and dare I say routine. But just think about how much more you’ll appreciate it when you’ll be able to get out again! You’re guaranteed to love all your runs (even the rotten ones) for at least the next few months after this! πŸ˜‰

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    • Jim Brennan says:

      You have perspective, Fullmoonrunner, and I’m glad you share it. With all of the great support I’ve gotten, I’m starting to focus more getting healthy and less on not running. Think long-term! Thanks!
      Jim

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  4. How do you feel about knitting Jim? πŸ™‚ or baking? or origami? I’m trying to think of other hobbies I’ve messed with in between creative no flow periods. You’ve been here before, I’m sure of it. Remember how when you get back into the groove it’s like being with an old friend after a long separation? ~ Kate

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  5. I can appreciate how frustrating it can be when you can’t run due to an injury, but sometimes an injury is a sign of something you needed to change in your training that you can learn from and come out stronger for it. I’m sure you can adapt and make something good come out of this.

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  6. Jim, there you go again, making me think! Gheesh. Hey, have you ever seen the movie, “Who’s Life is it Anyway?” A young Richard Dreyfuss portrays a sculptor who loses the ability to sculpt. Not that your situation is by any means life or death, but I thought of it when you posed the questions you did, in your post. As for you and your running shoes, be patient. Next time you look out the window and imagine your stride, instead imagine yourself skidding and falling on your rear in the snow. No desire to run now, eh? There, my work is done. Glad I could help. LOL.

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