But this week. This week my visit to Washington has been wildly, radically different. I've slept 7-8 hours every night (this small thing feels like a giant miracle) and I've gone out with friends almost every day since I've been here. And the running. Oh, the running. My body continues to let me run, without relapsing afterward. Not only has she let me run while I've been here, but she's let me run in the pouring down rain, with no illness-related repercussions.
When I first moved to California I missed Washington weather. But then I became a big ol' Orange County wimp and complained every time the weather dipped below 70. Except when it rained. I'd never complain about that. Because when it rained I'd lace up my running shoes and splash through the streets till my clothes were soaked and my hair clung to my neck in wet clumps. Running in the rain is one of my favorite things.
It's also the best therapy I've ever known. For most of my life, whenever my gut churned with emotion, I'd run until all that thrashing, white water emotion turned to sweat and seeped out every pore. I'd push and I'd pound, and after a few miles of long, quick strides, I was emptied. My soul felt scoured of all its stress. And when the sky dumped rain? It gave me a clean body to match my scoured soul. Everything felt fresh and awake and zinging with life.
After I got sick 3.5 years ago, I couldn't be wet for long because my body couldn't maintain its temperature. Wet hair or clothes made me shake with chills. So not only was running not an option, but standing in the rain for long wasn't either.
But yesterday I braved the rain. I've been feeling so good the last several weeks that I figured I should test the ol' body to see what she could do. And boy did she deliver. And boy did the skies also deliver. They dumped buckets and buckets of warm, spring rain. Halfway into my run, the light morning sprinkle turned into a deluge, and then the deluge turned into hail, and then my mouth turned up into a big old smile.
I've been smiling ever since.
And I've been wide-eyed with wonder at my body's ability to recover from my socializing and exercising this spring. You may remember the post I wrote a year ago to celebrate my progressing health. After years of functioning at about 10-30% of my "normal," I'd finally progressed to about 70-80% of normal and felt fantastic. But a few weeks after posting my celebratory blog, I had a relapse that threw me in bed for five weeks. Since then, my life has been a cycle of feeling okay (functioning at 60-80% of normal) and relapsing (functioning at 10-20% of normal). I've not been able to celebrate signs of health this year without the realization that imminent relapse is likely.
And yet here I am, over four weeks into a regular running regime, and rather than regress into relapse, I feel stronger each day. The health I feel this spring is wildly, wonderfully more vibrant than anything I've experienced in years. And my run in the rain yesterday is proof — my absolute favorite spring gift from a very good God. Today, I just wanted to share it with you.
|Rainy, hail-y, running bliss|
Happy, spring-y Friday, my friends!
© by scj