Let’s try something. Blink. Now take a look at the letter “o”. Look into the middle of the letter and blink. Repeat that same thing for any of the previous a’s, p’s, and g’s in this sentence. Rub your thumb against the side of your index finger. Look at the corner of whatever device you’re reading this on and blink again. Kind of a pain, huh?
This all may seem strange because it is. But for me, this is my normal. At the beginning of the year I began to notice some odd things going on in my head. I’d backtrack on sentences while reading books in order to blink at certain letters until my brain felt soothed. Don't even get me started on reading my Twitter feed. I’d started finding corners within the regular world, like door jams or pillow corners, and blink at them. I'd form triangles within these natural corners in my head. I began rubbing my fingers together and against my chest when I felt stressed, and especially during runs to distract my brain. These are my OCD rituals, and this is the story of finding my remedy.
I Used to Run Alone
I’ve been running for about 10 years now, and all the while I’ve had this stigma that I needed to run alone. In my mind I probably wasn’t someone anyone would want to run with. I may be too slow, hold them back, or not enjoy the route they do. I like to push myself within my own head, and I was in competition with myself. I never wanted to run with anyone.
That was until I started opening my mind up to the community that was standing…or running rather…right in front of me.
The other weekend (pictured above yay!) was a big day for me. I ran a race. It went ok. But this has nothing to do with my race or my time...or even with running in general. It has to do with that little, teeny, tiny scrap of clothing on my upper torso. Can you see it?
That's right. I wore a crop top for the first time out in public. And guess what? Buildings caught fire, children cried out for their mothers, and sinkholes opened up in the street.
But before I tell you what really happened, none of which involved burning buildings or sinkholes, but maybe a few crying children, but instead something much more magical, let me give you some context on this whole thing and why it's such a big deal.
With the Boston Marathon taking off today, I felt it very appropriate to share my own experience with running, as well as share some advice that I've discovered since I've started training especially since I'm not only running my first marathon this year, but am also attempting to qualify for Boston. Thousands of runners compete in this race every year, many of whom have become my inspirations, teammates, and friends, and I can now, finally, appreciate what they're going through.
My experience with running isn't simply a story of my journey through the past 8 years, because there really isn't much to tell...up until 20 weeks ago. Starting then, my life went through a major shift, and since then my running journey's become...intense to say the least. 20 weeks ago running completely took over my life, and will continue to do so for the remainder of 2018.
This is the life we accept when we take on the marathon.
Being International Women's Day (YAS GIRLS!), I got inspired and felt it would be appropriate to write my first real blog post about a topic I know a lot of girls, women, and myself can relate to.
I Don't Get Along with Girls
"I don't get along with girls."
"Most of my friends are guys." "Girls are too judgey." "I get along with guys better." Oh my gosh, I get it. I see you. I feel you. I have always been the girl with a bunch of guy friends. Guys are so fun and I never understood girls. Some days I still really don't. Hell may freeze over if I'm actually ever a bridesmaid (but please don't rule me out I'm super supportive and love weddings :D). Yes, I have about five girls who I would call my core group of (amazing) girlfriends. Some I've known most of my life, a couple are new. But even so, I know people with up to or even more than a dozen girlfriends. That will never be me.
I realized early on that having a ton of girlfriends just wasn't in the cards for me. I don't make friends easily, and I'm not into traditional "female" roles. I feel more comfortable in hiking boots than a dress. I want to spend my money running races instead of getting my nails done. I fully recognize that if I go out dancing it's going to consist of me whippin' out the finger guns and going full Elaine Benes. If you ever catch me wearing heels I actually morph into a baby deer learning how to walk. And I am just not the type of girl with a ton of girlfriends. You're still reading this. Okay, you get it, you're with me, you're on board. Let's keep going.
The year is 2018. We speak in memes. Tamagotchi's are back. All food is rainbow colored. Recycling is finally cool. Everyone and their sister is starting a blog...and here I come jumping on the bandwagon! But in all seriousness, is it so much to ask for a girl to want to express herself? Writing and photography isn't something I've identified myself with in some time now and I kind of want that back...badly. I was an avid writer in high school, bopped around with some short stories in college, and along the way it managed to disappear entirely from my self identity. The same thing happened with my photography, and I miss having a creative outlet. Be nice, because we're going to see if I can still do this thing.