Writing, Running, Being.

The finish line is a shifty Thing and what is life, but reckoning?
Ani DiFranco

Tuesday, June 29, 2010


I'm a little down. My knee isn't healing. I can't seem to get past 3 miles before it blows up. I need to go see the Healer again for some Active Release. I hope I can work that into the budget for next month. You know what really grinds my gears? The term "overuse injury." I don't overuse my body. I run, sure. But I was under the assumption running is included the Knee's job description. Or maybe I am so highly evolved that my body is meant to perform nothing more than the movements required to log into Facebook and drive a car. Maybe Jonas's kids will be born without functional knees. Just pre-bent legs (for aesthetic purposes) and chairs glued to their butts.

I'm trying not to be a Negative Nancy but I'm getting really frustrated with running. Or lack thereof. I'm even going through the proper stages of grief to cope with the loss of running in my life. First denial, where I ran through knee pain, convincing myself it was nothing. Then anger. Fuck you knees, I'm not aqua jogging. I
hate aqua jogging. Do what I tell you to do, you bastards! And now I'm in stage 3. Bargaining. I've invented a running god to whom I've prayed, "I promise I'll never sign up for another race as long as I live, just please give my knees back for the sake of my sanity!"

I've been getting conflicting messages about the perceived length of life. Cathy keeps telling me that life is short. Life is short. Life is short. Life is short. You always hear that, you know? Like you'd better hurry the hell up and figure out what it is you're meant to do and who you're supposed to be. And then in the same breath they'll tell you how young you are. So which is it? I met a couple in their 80's at the bike shop. Both triathletes who outlived their spouses and found each other in their late 60's. There I was talking to a woman who is eighty about her race last weekend. One I couldn't do because my knees are shot. That was too ironic. What do I even have left? Is it wrong to aspire to run the rest of my life? How do people do that?

I woke up early to run but walked back with a lump in my throat after less than 3 miles. Though my eyes were busy containing tears of frustration, they still noticed the other runners on the trail. Jealousy is an evil bitch. She told me not to smile at them. She told me they were all assholes and that I should stick a foot out and trip them as they ran by (I didn't). I wanted to hate everyone because my knee was stiff and swollen without a valid excuse (aside from overuse). But how can I be angry when I'm on a beautiful trail in Cheyenne Canyon? And I live in Colorado. A place where people don't just live to 80, but they run there. How can I be angry this early in the morning, when the sun has barely risen and the day hasn't been given a fair chance? How can I be sure my knee will crap out the next time I try? And how can I be sure I won't get to be 80 and running someday too?


Patrick Mahoney said...

I realize you are VERY frustrated but I think this is an excellent post. Things have a way of working out, you'll be back in no time. Mostly because you want to be.

Kovas Palubinskas said...

Wow, so much anger, probably feels good to get that out. Runner you may be, but remember that there are many other things out there that can still be experienced. Ride a bike, go for a swim - both these will strengthen your whole body and hopefully, rehab your knee!

Marny said...

I really have forgotten how much I love cycling. I'm getting back into it and it may just take my mind off running until I heal :)

tara said...

Oh dang Marny. I think this is an awesome post. We have all been there at the point where our bodies won't do what our minds want them to and it SUCKS. I feel for you. I hope that cycling will allow your knee to heal and your mind to be somewhat satisfied until you can run again. I think when Cathy says Life is short, she just means, live your life to its fullest now. She doesn't mean you have to have everything figured out. And I think she means don't put off to tomorrow what you can do today, especially where dreams are concerned. You are young with a ton of life ahead of you. You are an awesome runner, a great friend, you have an amazing artistic gift, etc... You ROCK!!!

cathycrisp said...

wow, i am sorry about my comment life is short, i guess i say that because i have lost mymom, dad and brother, been in a horrible marriage and let life pass me by and now i am 50 and just realizing that life is short, have a good one. i am sorry that it offended you or made you mad. never my intention. this post may have another name but this is cathy crisp posting. once again sorry for having said that too you, i will in the future keep my comments to myself. Wishing only the best for you in the future. cathy crisp

Janice said...

I have been where you are. Several times. Actually more than several. See a good doctor. Don't give up. I've had surgery on one knee even though I swore I wouldn't because I'd NEVER heard of surgery making knees better. Mine is better. I'm learning to run barefoot. My knees don't hurt when I do (the doctor told me never to run again, but he was wrong. He's also a cyclist). I'm 46. I plan to run until I'm 80. You know what...I WILL run until I'm 80.

Marny said...

No way, Cathy! Just exploring different meanings of the saying. You always get me thinking about things in new ways and I always feel better after :)

AM-GoalsfortheWeek! said...

I *heart* this post. Again, you have a talent for writing;-)

and I soooo hear you. I'm coming off a heel injury, and that Ms. Jealousy is a real bitch!