“Welcome back to another year, another run, another season of self-discovery and encouragement… Are you crazy?! It’s cold, it’s dark, it’s 4:30 in the morning – what are you doing woman?!”
As I type this I am smiling because somedays there really is a ferocious battle between both sides of my brain – insert the picture of the devil on one shoulder and an angel on the other!
I turned 40 in January and I won’t tell a lie, there were emotions that came with this birthday. I always find birthday’s reflective but this one meant more. I started my birthday with a solo run and in that moment I knew there was no way I could do this year without doing another half marathon. My running partners and I have locked in a race and date and this morning we went for our first purposeful run. We turned on our lights and lurched ourselves forward in the cold of the dark morning. Instantly something stirred- it was the feeling of purpose.
My friend and I chatted to the turning point. Surprisingly our GPS watches still worked and so did our legs. Our watches beeped and we made the turn to return home. “Music?” she said, and with that the earphones were in and we fell into our own groove. The familiar sight of her back made me smile. I have long since accepted that I will never in my wildest dreams beat this lady on the road, but you know what? – neither do I ever want to. This is her role. She is my pacer and in the thousands of miles we have logged I take great comfort and safety in knowing that I can count on her to be ahead. As the space between us began to lengthen I became dauntingly aware of a thought that somewhat took my breath away. It was wrapped up in one word.
Distance is the space between two points and is also the avoidance of familiarity. At first glance, distance can be seen with a negative connotation. It keeps us apart, it separates us, and it can challenge connection.
That word kept come back to me over and over. I looked to the east and the sun was starting to come up over the horizon. The sun’s rays encouraged me to change my perspective. What if we looked at distance in another light? Could distance create more than just space? Could it initiate creativity? Inspire faith? Create courage?
For many of our patients distance certainly creates courage. Courage to pick up that phone and make an appointment, courage to take the leap of faith and get on a plane to come to BFC for medical treatment. Courage to conquer the distance between the safeties of the known for the unknown.
Distance in fact can give you the gift of looking at any area of your life and see where you are now and create the possibility of where you want to be.
My friend’s shoe lights were clipping up and down like Santa’s reindeer. I smiled and started to pick up the pace. This 2018 race is going to be one full of possibilities. Please join me over the next few months as we peel back the layers and create new possibilities together. I hope my rambles will encourage you along the way.
Time to lace up!
– Rachel De Gale