When Two Sentences Bring Back a Memory So Vivid…

It’s Funny….

You would think that having a mental illness would make one steer clear of reading or immersing one’s self in the topic.

But being who I am I need to learn more.  Not only about my illness, but about other mental illnesses as well.

I am reading Fast Girl right now by Suzy Favor Hamilton.  I had heard about this book while listening to my Another Mother Runner podcast where Suzy was the guest and spoke so candidly about her Bipolar Illness.

After I heard her speak to Sarah and Dimity, I needed to read this book.

I got to page 84 on my iPad.

I read this:

“When my doctor walked through the door and smiled at me, I immediately started weeping uncontrollably.  She sat down really close to me and made me look at her.”

Then I started to cry (and not for the first time, this book is a tear jerker).

This was EXACTLY what happened the day I went to see my doctor in 2011.  Exactly.  I’ve known my doctor forever.  She delivered my daughter.  We’ve always had a great rapport.  So when she walked in and smiled, I broke down.  

It was so surreal reading those words.

I never want to forget that day, and I know I never will.  It is permanently etched in my psyche.

It was the day I couldn’t run away from what was happening.  The day I hit the wall and fell right back on my ass.

But at some point, that ass has to move.

I remember finally getting the courage to get out and run one morning during my recovery.  I had been on my meds for a few weeks and was feeling okay.  I pulled on my gear and went out the door.

I failed.  So bad.

My body was still broken down.  My body was still suffering from depression.  I didn’t realize how mental illness affected your whole body.  Not being able to just suit up and run was very devastating to me at the time.

I walked, a lot.  I worked with my trainer for a bit.  I focused on getting better mentally.  I realized how much running helped me centre. 

It’s why I cherish every run I have.  Even the bad ones.  Because I know there will be days that I just can’t get out there, and I have accepted that.

It is a struggle when you are batting depression to get moving.  So the days I do move, I celebrate them.

I know that having a training plan will force me to move come mid-January.  This time of the year I need something to push me forward.  

The shorter days with longer periods of darkness are hell.

I just want to come home and sleep.

So to those of you who struggle:  

Keep on keeping on.  Any movement is good.  Walking, yoga, cycling, a gym class.

And if you can’t do it today, it’s okay.  There is always tomorrow.