Friday, January 31, 2014

running for neurotics

My knee healed and then I had the flu, and finally I'm almost all better, and took of for a run. Well a walk/jog, but it was glorious. The first five minutes of jogging were awful, I had pain in my upper back and arm- which is typical for me, I have some kind of upper back muscular problem ( STRESS ), and my right rib cage was screaming at me- also typical, issue of unknown origins but probably endometriosis- so I walked for a little, and the second jog round was much more comfortable. By the time I got home, after just 2 miles, I felt horribly great. 

I have to move. If I don't move, my hormones spread peanut butter all over themselves and curl up into gelatinous, buttery balls and refuse to be processed through my surely overworked liver, and I start to feel both more emotionally and physically miserable. My anxiety insists on a physical way out, and through the breathe and sweat and pounding heart is the way most preferred. Working the body in this way, a way that recalls for us on a cellular level our ancestors, bending over rivers to fish and do laundry, trudging miles every day, swinging axes, scrubbing floors covered with two inches of farmed dust, the kind of back breaking work that sent all the characters in my novels to bed at 8 too exhausted to have sex or talk. I think that people who have anxiety need, more than the average person, to feel physically connected to the world around them on a regular basis, to remind us that we are not tethered to the brittle, dried thoughts in our  heads that skitter like dead leaves on the concrete, leaving us adrift from the comfort of the thingness of things, the comfort of cold wood floors on bare feet, heat from a fireplace, thick cotton sheets and pillows, the heat of bodies against bodies. When I work out, when I run, I am reminding my brain that it does not exist alone in a dictatorship, that I am connected and am my body, my brain and that elusive 'self'. I can feel the wind come through my brain as I move, a good strong fast moving wind, sending those brittle aged thoughts scattering up and out into the sky, leaving me for that moment, free to experience life as it is in that moment. And I lift my face to the sun and I can feel it, and for that moment, that is more than enough.
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