Run

Do you remember?
When you were little,
and there were no limits
to what you could achieve.

Days spent playing and laughing,
innocent pastimes
in make-believe worlds,
interrupted only by nagging parents
who insisted you come to eat,
bath,
or – worst of all –
clean up
and get ready for bed.

And as the years crept by,
life changed –
you changed.

You aspired to be older;
‘grown up’,
a master of your own fate –
able to choose what you did and when;
mature enough to decide for yourself.

And the world of innocent joy –
hours with imaginary friends within dramatic stories –
faded
as you became more sophisticated;
school pressures taking over,
companions exerting invisible influence
over your sense of self,
until you were all the same:
individuality replaced by groupthink…
all for the purpose of fitting in.

And as you moved through the turbulent teenage years,
life became more complicated,
as you searched for fulfilment,
immersed in your own world –
somehow not as wholesome and free
as the one experienced by your younger self.

Time moved on,
and so did you
and your friends;
some staying together in the next adventure;
many departing –
perhaps never to be seen or heard from again,
despite the best intentions
to keep in touch.

Adulthood arrived:
freedom coupled with responsibility.
Many mistakes made,
harsh lessons learned
in the classroom of Life;
and growth beyond the constrained walls
of all you knew in educational factories of previous decades.

Infatuation came and went,
perhaps,
and Love arrived –
lifetime commitment
to the one who complemented you in so many ways.

Happy days and nights,
as you took on the world together;
followed by joy
as new life was conceived –
along with the sacrifice of freedom once more,
as your choices were made with the next generation in mind.

But through all of this,
did you ever feel the urge
to just run?

Rekindle that wild, uninhibited freedom;
where the world is an open plain,
and your only barrier
is shortness of breath,
and tiredness of legs.

No thinking.
No worrying.
No concern for what might happen
if you fail to pace yourself
or control your path.

Just run.
As fast as you can.
As far as you can.
Your inner child spurring you on without restraint.

Run.
Until you hit your physical limit.
Then push some more.

And finally
collapse to the ground,
feeling like you’re about to die,
yet satisfied
that you lived once more;
reconnected –
if only for a short time –
with who you were
before the dust of life’s experiences
settled on your heart.

So
when times get tough,
and it’s all too much,
put on those shoes,
find your nearest space,
and
just
RUN.

(Caution: If you have a pre-existing health condition that would make this dangerous, please use your better judgement and find other ways to feel free. Sorry if that ruined the mood…I had to be responsible :))

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5 thoughts on “Run

  1. I was not a physically fit child, always preferring to stay home… but as an adult, I feel like my desire to run is compensating for the lack of it during my childhood. Only recently have I come to enjoy running for the mental clarity it brings.

    • My father was a runner, and tried to instill it in us too – though we had to be bribed. He still advocates for all the benefits it brings – both physically and mentally. Unfortunately, I’ve not been able to pass that on to my own kids…yet. I’ve become more consistent myself, though…but this piece isn’t really about that kind of controlled activity.

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