Last Wednesday was a day.
A meh day.
A blah day.
A dreary day.
A “can we start over?” kind of day.
But those days happen.
Like the rest of the world I have been hustling to keep up with the ever-evolving changes surrounding the Covid-19 global pandemic. And on that particular day, it just didn’t seem like I was in my normal rhythm. It was dark, rainy and cold outside and my mood seemed to match. Nothing was wrong, per se, it was just hard. I felt like I was walking through quicksand. I was irritable. I struggled to toggle between mom-mode and work-mode. I was very aware that I wasn’t my best self and felt stuck in a blah place.
When schools shut down my employer graciously accommodated work-from-home arrangements for parents that were running into childcare issues. Truly, a blessing I will forever be thankful for. It has been a dream to be the primary educator for my kids and a “stay home” parent with them over the last several weeks. It has been filled with so many silly moments of joy and opportunities for me to step back into a child-like place and relish in simple delights.
And yet, some days are really hard.
I’m still working hard from home while working hard to be a fantastic parent and teacher to my children. And friends, there are sometimes days where I’m just not sure I can keep up. But then, I remember why all this is worth it.
I’m blessed to have a job that I can still fulfill at a high-level while working from home. I’m thankful that every day I get to “show up” to work, even if I’m wearing a “zoom suit” and conducting my work behind a computer screen. I love the work I get to do and recognize that my family is so fortunate that both parents are still employed.
I’m blessed to have the ability and resources to teach my children. I’m thankful for the educational victories, milestones reached and “ah-ha!” moments we’ve experienced together. I’m grateful for the challenges that have helped me achieve new levels of patience. I’m honored that I have had such a critical role in their development and growth.
Yet, even with a stark awareness of the blessings, on rainy days – literal or figurative – it can feel heavy. I’m only human. But, feeling heavy is a reminder to pause and consider what I need to make sure I am able to be well for my family, friends, colleagues and most importantly, myself. So what did I do? I ran in the rain.
For me, running is the ultimate thought-clearing, centering, and relaxing thing I know to do. It is my go-to weapon against the heavy. Sometimes I wonder if running helps me feel like I’m creating physical distance between me and all that is making me feel weary. Sometimes I wonder if my steady footfalls help settle the jumbled thoughts that seem stuck. Whatever the reason, it works. So I do it. Even in the rain.
I know I’m not the only one feeling heavy — it was just my turn. Maybe you also recently took your turn this past week? But if it wasn’t then, I know you will have your day when you need to go for a proverbial run in the rain. When the heavy sets it in you must recognize it and have the audacity to move forward with what you need to be well.
Running in the rain isn’t optimal. It’s easy to talk myself out of it. But there are things we need to do – that we’ll be thankful we did after we are done – because the very act of doing them helps us move forward with what we need to be well.
I’ve never had a run that I wasn’t grateful for afterwards, though there have been many I’ve had to psych myself up for. Whatever your rainy run means…I encourage and even urge you to push through.
It won’t make sense even to you. But boldly challenge your own reservations. Don’t talk yourself out of it. Go run in your rain.