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Run 28: Creaky Knees and Sad Spirits

April 11, 2012

Miles: 9

Other runners: no

So it turns out, not at all surprisingly, that the same smart phones that inform a runner of the weather, wind speed, route elevation (always exciting in Chicago), and pace can also bear really bad news at spectacularly bad times. It was a beautiful day yesterday, and after 4 hours of sending out carefully-researched, massively boring research- and job-related emails (with no response, which is the worst), I was ready. I grabbed my shoes and  my keys, turned on the phone to record my run, and somehow just couldn’t resist the unsatisfying lure of my inbox. As I stood at the top of the stairs to our front door, I learned that the fellowship application I had spent weeks preparing, and that I’ve been depending on for the next eight or so months of fieldwork (which is really just a fancy word for “rent and groceries”) was reviewed and denied. As the sun lit up the hallway through the muted reds and greens of stained glass, I stood foolishly in running tights and a jacket, unsure of what to do next.

I ran, but it wasn’t great. Exactly 3.68 miles in at an 8:56  pace, thanks a lot, “Map My Run,” I stopped at a corner and was very still. My right big toe hurt, the back of my left knee hurt, and as a mother with a stroller walked by and landscaping trucks pulled in and out of the alleyway, I started to cry. I cry a lot, as everyone already knows, but never during a run. First of all, it’s nearly impossible. Secondly, I love running! It’s where I feel safest, where my thoughts are lost. I cried as I stood at the corner, and then I cried on and off for the next five and a half miles. That’s a perk of being in a big city, I suppose: no one notices you, and if they do, you’re completely anonymous. You’re the completely anonymous runner-crier. Story of my life.

I met with a professor in the afternoon, and then in the evening my husband took me our for some Oaxacan food. My legs still ache and my heart hurts a little, but that food was delicious. And the sun beautiful.



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  1. NOES! Oh M! I’m sorry! Let me know if you need ANYTHING!

  2. Nobody can take or change running. Sure they can control some money and therefore some stress in your life. But you’re still you and you’re still running. No one can touch that. And really, that means they can’t touch anything else either. Hang tough and Sean says “luv you”

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