Run Through the Grief

I haven’t had to put running to the test as a sanity-saving mechanism – until just last week. My beloved (and relatively young) cat passed away unexpectedly on Wednesday. Anyone who knows me knows that I loved that cat immensely and that she was a great source of comfort to me. She was my sanity-saver. But then she left me, and I was a mess.

Life has to go on, though. I have other creatures that need me to care for them. So Thursday morning, even though I felt like hiding under the covers, I instead dragged myself out of bed, laced up my running shoes, and ran a hard three miles. I say “hard” because I went faster than usual – and because every few minutes, I would start this hyperventilating/sobbing that made me slow down. Later that day, I went to a metabolic training session, and I kept (mostly) calm through that. Actually, aside from a pat on the back, Delilah spared me no mercy, for which I was grateful. Friday, I went to resistance training.

Saturday morning, I was still struggling. I went for my customary long run, which I’ve been keeping to about six miles. As I ran, I focused on my music, on my form, and let fond memories of my kitty worm their way in. By the time I got home, I was finally starting to feel a little more human.

After resistance training today, I can say that I’m definitely feeling better. I had never tested out running; I hadn’t had a reason. My kitty was my tenuous link to sanity in a crisis. But now, it’s running and working out, and it’s helping me put things in perspective. She was a member of my family, and she meant a lot to me. But she would want me to go on, to literally and figuratively put one foot in front of the other. So I did, and I will.

Rest in peace, my friend.

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