Mental Health · Personal Development


"Wildfire" © NPS Climate Change Response, 2013. CC BY 2.0.
Wildfire” © NPS Climate Change Response, 2013. CC BY 2.0.
Sunday morning I stood waiting for the elevator. How funny. Waiting for an elevator to go down seven floors, so that I can go run three miles. “People are so weird,” I said aloud. Then realized I was talking to myself at 5:30 AM in an empty hallway and laughed. Point proven.

Dawn had just begun to sketch the outline of day on the sky as I made my way to the street. I walked past the church they built on the corner, towering. Sprinklers on, red flowers blooming. Light crept in around the corners of the skyline and I paid close attention. Listened to my footsteps. Fell into rhythm with my breath.

Every few minutes I turned up the volume on my iPod. Drowned out any specific thought that was trying to keep my attention. Changed the display on my watch so I’d stop checking my pace, my heart rate. Did everything I could to just run.

The world started to wake up. Gentle light coaxing pigeons, squirrels, people out onto the street. Everything dark red. The west is on fire, and the smoke hung thick in the air, cushioning me from the world. Haze. That’s how it’s all felt lately, anyway.

I climbed the hill back up toward our apartment, lungs heavy. Started listing things I should try if I want to get better. Run more. Meditate longer. Lift heavier. Go to more therapy. Change my doses. Stop calling my brain defective. Just deal with it.

I told myself, “I don’t know what, but I have to do something different. I have to make this different.”

But I neglected to realize it always already is.

12 thoughts on “Spark

  1. I can feel the strength and conviction through your words, your determination to not let it win, to stay one step ahead. That’s something to be proud of. Something I am struggling with tremendously myself right now. The paralyzing intrusive thoughts, the stuck-ness of it all, one day up and the next down. I’d like to be able to write it out as eloquently as you do. Thanks for making me feel less alone, wishing you the best in your journey.


    1. Oh, A. Thank you so much for taking the time to say something. Just this morning I was sitting with my therapist and I said, “I just feel so… Stuck.”

      It’s nice to know people can see the work I put in even when I can’t. I so appreciate you carrying that for me and I’ll be proud to sorry yours, too. I’m sure you’re always doing more than you think.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Running itself is so much like therapy for me, providing a way to escape if only for a little bit. 5:30am on a Sunday? I only wish I had that determination.

    I’ve been lurking on your posts for a few weeks now but have never known what to write, if I should say anything at all. In a way I almost feel like I’m intruding. Yet I come back week after week, waiting to see what you will write next and silently cheering you on.

    You’re inspiring. Brave. Every time you post, you expose yourself to the world without giving a damn, and that takes courage.

    You will get through this. While of course all situations are different, my boyfriend and I went through a similar experience in 2013 and I’d like to think we’re mighty dandy now. You will be, too. No, you ARE.



    1. Bobby! Thank you so much.

      I appreciate you looking at it as determination. I have to stay on a regular schedule or everything gets way worse for me, so I often just think of it as necessity. Determination sounds much nicer, though.

      Thanks so much for the silent cheers. I’m sure it can feel kind of crazy to read stuff that’s so raw, but there’s a reason I attach my name to this stuff and tell people about it.

      I’m always hopeful that by talking about stuff like this will take some of the ache out of it. Maybe for me. Maybe for someone else. Hopeful it can take away some of the power these things have.

      And, of course, it’s always nice to hear encouraging things. Little votes of confidence go a long way for me. So does hearing about people who have been there, but aren’t now.

      Thank you. ❤


  3. There has been a change in the timbre of your words. Less despair. Less casting about. Less of a sense of waiting.
    There is more color and more purposeful movement.
    More Ruby, I think.


    1. Oh, Bon. I read this. Re-read it. Ran into the other room to show my husband. Then sat down in the bathroom and cried into my hands a little bit.

      I hope you’re right. I hope I’m coming back.


      1. I don’t know you before. I did read back through – and symp/empathized with much you had to say.
        For right now? I see life and color seeping into your (already lovely) words like ink dropped into a bowl of water.

        It is gorgeous and compelling and full of hope.



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