If you’re lucky, you have or will find a half and they make you whole. John made me a better person, but I know we were great together. We had our issues, but always loved.
We were two halves of each other.
I’m doubtful I’ll ever find this again.
Halves are funny things. You need two to make one, or two to make something fabulous. Sometimes half isn’t enough, sometimes half is too much.
Sometimes a half is juuuuuuust right.
I had my first half marathon today. Something I never thought I’d do, let alone ever want to do. Why would you run that far? Weird crazy people run that far.
I figured I could do it after I eventually stopped wheezing after running 5km. Then when I started doing 10k on my ‘short outings’. I still didn’t consider doing one, I mean road racing and 21 Kms? Ugh.
It wasn’t until I went to a photo shoot in Hamilton for the Spectator newspaper. It was a call to those left behind by someone they loved to suicide. They asked anyone that wanted to come in to bring a photo of their loved one, an item that meant something to the departed and a 50 word blurb explaining the significance of that item.
The journalist and photographer weren’t sure anyone would come in. We came. Motherless children, daughterless parents, widows and widowers, friends and siblings.
We all lost someone beautiful and just wanted to tell people how much we miss them and that the world is a sadder place without them. We want our loved ones to be remembered and their lives to have made or to make a difference.
So how did that photo shoot result in a half marathon?
I started speaking with the journalist and we started talking about how long it’s been since John left, and how I’m dealing with the loss. I mentioned that I had started running and how much solace it gives me just to bugger off into the woods and put one foot in front of the other.
She agreed that running does her mind good as well, and then said I should keep it up and go for a half marathon. I’m not sure what the exact words were, but that’s the gist of what she said. And that’s how I signed up for a half marathon.
Ha. In a round about way, I suppose I could blame John for the silliness, too. I wouldn’t have been there, holding back tears, holding on to his kilt and my 50word blurb (that I wish I could re-write… it could be better, both grammatically and in detail) and we wouldn’t have chatted about running.
So there I was. Running 21.1 Kms for no other reason than I can. I guess there isn’t a better reason, because it’s not worth the T-shirt. It might be worth the finishers medal. Maybe. And the goody bag. And the cowbell.
I know a half marathon isn’t a big deal for most runners, but for my asthmatic lungs and sad heart, it was huge for me.
I almost feel like there’s a new me emerging. Maybe I’m forcefully creating another half of myself, revealing my Gemini soul? Nah. That’s too hippy.
Maybe I’m hoping the new half won’t miss John so much, and will carry some of the burden of sadness, do some of the breathing for the other half. Whatever’s happening, it’s ok. I’m holding on, but I don’t seem to have to grip so tightly all of the time. I can see John smiling more often, instead of in the state of despair he must have been at the end. I miss him like mad. Always will.
Grief doesn’t have a finish line, and it’s a never ending journey, I know that. What I’m hoping is that while I’m running and just being, that I can enjoy the view a bit more, breathe a little bit easier and maybe, day by day, just go a little farther.
Actually, I think I’ll sit the rest of the day out. That was redix.