When you run for a long time by yourself you have a lot of time to experience your state of being. I ran around mount Hood this week. 40 miles solo, 10,000 feet of climbing. Just 7 days after Wonderland FKT. I wore down my body and exposed my emotions. My emotions and my state of being became my environment. I experience in the external world my internal environment. Fears turn into Mountain Lions and Bears and nightfall. And yet...Joy is the mountain with a sunset like a blush making my cheeks pink. Peace is the first glimpse of mount Hood above an alpine meadow with glaciers carving its side.
Seeing the mount Hood around mile 3 on my run flooded me with gratitude, such a feeling! I felt joy and excitement for the trail. Those feelings were short lived and my run began to feel like the suffering I have been experiencing in my personal life. I just wanted it to be done. My brain was a CD that had been scratched and kept catching on a song line then jumping to another, but jumbling everything into an incoherent mess. I just wanted to skip the track. And then the next track was scratched too. There was no escaping the damage.
I just don't understand how my world can go so quickly from color to black and white, from meaning to meaninglessness. From richness to blandness. I can't taste food. It all is the same. I feel my loss deeply and intensely. It's a loss for what could be and for what I had worked so hard for and put so much into. I don't understand how someone can give up on you? How can they leave you so alone? I feel as though I am those mountains I am circumnavigating, covered in glaciers, cutting into my flesh. But the glaciers turn into streams and feed the alpine meadows. The meadows grow and feed the animals and insects. The streams hydrate us as the glaciers slowly melt.
While in Portland, I had my poison dripping dream. Dreams are also metaphors for our lives, much like our everyday experiences. We can learn a lot about what we are creating in our lives by our running experiences and by our dreams. In my dream I was in a building with light fixtures that had been covered in poison. When the lights were turned on, the poison began dripping onto the people in the building, including myself. I had known that someone had put poison on the lights, yet I did nothing. But there I was with the lights on, getting dripped on by poison. The poison would create hallucinations and eventually kill me, so if I washed my skin, I might have a fighting chance. And there were children, babies in the room. I was trying to wash their skin and my own. Yet, I didn't leave the building. Then I woke up and run mount Hood.
More than ever, I want to feel our interconnectedness. Yours and mine, my dear reader. I am an extension of you, playing on the mountains, drinking from the stream, crying as the clouds do so that the wild blueberries can grow, and finding joy in the mountains that blush with a morning sunrise. Join me.