In which I set my sights on a new PR

Shin splints ail me, this I know, for the google tells me so.
No more runs to me belong, ankle's weak, though quads are strong.
(And to the composer of the beloved children's song Jesus Loves Me, I'm so very, very sorry.)

I have a confession to make. I'm an addict. I don't run for fun anymore. I run because I need to run, might go crazy if I can't run, start to rewrite lovely songs in a terrible terrible fashion if I don't run. You get the point.

In what began as a healthy obsession, I was on target to easily achieve a new personal record (PR) in my second half marathon, just two weeks away. However, it's possible that a mild stress fracture or a strange case of shin splints will sideline me for several weeks. It's also possible that whatever is wrong could be righted quickly with rest and stretching, and that I might be able to run the race in a couple of weeks.

Either way, I'm a mental case right now. I vacillate between calm acceptance of whatever might be and a mix of panic and frustration over the mere possibility of a no-running recovery regime. It sounds very trivial when I type it out here. What's the big deal? So you can't run. It's not like someone is chasing you with a deadly weapon. Tell me again why you consider this an actual problem

But no matter how trivial it sounds, this broken stride, these broken plans have sent me straight back to battle against the neon, eye-assaulting shades of anxiety. So I fight with the only brush I have--thanksgiving. I find a reason to say thank you. Then I say it, and it's miraculous how the muted pastels of prayer cover every gaudy inch of anxiety, how I see a new picture. 

But like any battle, even ground gained, left unprotected, can be lost again. And so it's over and over, thought against thought, stroke against stroke, prayer against panic.

When my husband came home this morning, he'd barely laid his keys on the counter before he said, "Some really sad cases last night. They came in pairs." And then he told me about the gun shot wounds, the MVAs, the hopelessness that too often haunts the trauma bay.

Minutes earlier I had set the table for my pity party, complete with coffee and whine. But as it turned out, I felt too foolish to attend, much less invite my husband. Life is too short, too precious, too beautiful to waste on that sort of thing, don't you think?

So I've got a new goal. No matter how long the road to recovery, no whining along the way. And as my husband will attest--if I can pull this off--it will be a PR for sure.

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