Almost every day of the week, I go for a run.
It is my time of the day to relax, to center, and to just be completely alone. Sure, there are always women running near me, but they don’t matter: I zone out everything else and focus on escaping. I haven’t always been a runner and I choose not to do marathons (I’ll do a 5K if begged) because I don’t want to ruin the pleasure and serenity of my only quiet time in one of the busiest cities in the world.
Most of the time, my runs are relatively easy and I lose track of time as I’m releasing stress, pounds, and that stop at Papaya Dog the other night (Damn you hot dog and french fries!). Other times, I catch myself gasping for breath, counting down the seconds until I reach a certain mileage, and overall just miserable.
It’s when I’m about ready to push the “Quick Stop” button that I mentally take a step back. I turn off my iPod, I flip my cell phone over, and I start listening to my breath. I count to five as I inhale, and then ten as I exhale. I feel my chest rising up and down and just like that – I find my stride and I’m ready to take on a few more miles with that runner’s high you don’t think is possible until you experience it.
By concentrating on my breathing and allowing my focus to turn inward instead of getting caught up in music and possible text messages – I eliminate every interruption.
But in life –interuptions are plenty, especially when you’re trying to learn to find peace in your singleness. They come in the form of handsome strangers who shower us with compliments or friends who we wish would be more. Sometimes, they are in quick goodnight kisses that may turn to second-thoughts in the morning. And always, these attention-stealers are only momentary. They give us our short fix for a slight period of time before we’re left alone and back to battling our fears and our love obsession.
Even knowing this -is it ever possible to cut out every distraction that keeps us from focusing on what’s most important? And in this journey, do I need to rid myself of any current potential disruptions so I can sincerely, full-heartedly put my energy, my breath, and my spirit into finding this confidence?
At the gym yesterday, as I was constantly checking my phone, and racking my brain to say what to a certain someone who has made his way into my heart and into my life – I realized he was not only disrupting my run, but my process. I’ve known him almost as long as this blog has been active and in that period, I’ve had him to depend on to reassure me, give me attention, and keep me satisfied with the instant gratification I’ve missed.
So by having him in my life, am I running away from problems and being led by distractions, or sincerely stepping up to the plate to face them?
Having this guy who is at an arm’s reach and yet completely unavailable emotionally is a huge issue – and one I need to admit. He has been nothing but brutally honest with me and I’m thankful that if I did decide to get mixed up with a man, it’s a sincere one – but, yet, I’ve allowed my mood to be dictated by him.
Is this taking a step back? Possibly. But in the past, I never realized my actions and corrected them, so to me, it’s still progress. Yes, I’ve checked my phone. Yes, I’ve done things and acted in ways that are out of my character and moral boundaries. Yes, I’ve wished and hoped that something in our “platonic” friendship would morph into other feelings.
But in my heart of hearts, in the deepest corners of my soul, in the back of my mind that I try to avoid, and in my breath that is catching up with me – I know I need to start focusing on me. On my journey. On my progress. On the me I sincerely want to become – a me that doesn’t freak out and isn’t obsessive and is okay in her single shoes, no matter how long she walks in them.
So do I cut him out? Do I stop going on dates? Do I stop the flirting? Do I write him off in my long list of almost-but-never-really-boyfriends?
I just stop giving him attention. I stop allowing him to be the center of my thoughts at times. I stop letting myself get caught up in something that’s not meant to be. I stop the confusion before it becomes painful. I slow down. I put away my phone. I smile at myself in the mirror. Tell myself what I have to offer without needing him to reaffirm it. Give myself a break. Forgive myself. I move forward with confidence and with gentleness. I relax and let myself step back from my actions and revaluate.
And most importantly, I breathe.
PS: And if you need a distraction from today’s school or work load, go vote for one of my best friends. She deserves to win! Click here to vote for her.
Funny your post is about this…..I ran twice last night because its the only time I don’t think about my ex. I ran 4 miles right after work and then got upset around 10 and went back to the gym for another 4 miles. He never enters my mind when I am running. Over the years, through sports, marathons and just running so I don’t get fat, I have learned running is all about me…no one else. Its my daily me time:)
How come you edited your blog entry from yesterday. I read it yesterday and you wrote “…his way into my heart and into my bedroom”, and today you changed it to “his way into my heart and into my life”?
What about journalistic credibility. Dont you think that your fans are reading every word you write and are perfectly happy with your writing –so no need to go back and “change” facts. We are falling in love with this mystery person who has entered your life and seems to have a positive effect on your outlook on life and I can just immagine puts a smile in your pretty face! If anything you should share more about this magical person with us!
It is easy to judge someone else when your own identity is cloaked in secrecy!
I don’t think Frances is trying to be mean, Kim. But I must say, Frances, you sound creepy as hell. I edit Lindsay’s blogs on occasion and I didn’t even notice that subtle change. Who reads a blog twice and notices a word change? I’m glad Lindsay has fans, but geesh, you sound like you have an invested interest because of that guy or something. Don’t be a creepy ex, now. Ya hear?
Hey Kim and Nikki,
thank you both for the replies. I am neither judging –nor am I an ex. As it is we don’t even know whom it is she is talking about! If you read her blog everyday, you will notice that this person has not been mentioned before yesterday’s entry! Just sounded like an interesting bit of information that she has now shared which, evidently, makes her sound happy! Nothing wrong with that!
Thanks for being such a loyal reader. Yes, my original version included “in the bedroom”, but I later realized I wasn’t ready to give that information just yet (all part of the journey, ya know?) – so keep reading and I’m sure I’ll reveal more of the story later with this character!
And Kim & Nikki,
Thank you also for being loyal readers and friends! Love you ladies!
Nice blog. Big Fan! To previous comment above…Journalistic credibility? Really? It is a writer’s prerogative to change and edit their work and words, or so called “facts” as you put it, it’s called freedom of expression and as a reader you have NO SAY in the matter …but you are certainly free to write your own blog and “control” it’s content. And as far as “we are falling in love with this mystery person” who has only just been introduced, or more like, alluded to…hardly, enough details have been revealed to declare a “falling in love” with this person…my goodness.
Wow. You sound like me earlier this year.
Here is what I have learned about myself and about guys who are unavailable: we don’t go together.
I’m not a good ‘casual dating’ girl. I don’t date for fun. I go out with guys for fun, I go to parties for fun, but I do not actually date (and by this I mean go out with frequently, call them at least a few nights a week, and think about them regularly) for fun. This isn’t fun for me. My friends have always been pretty good at this, but I never have. I unwillingly become emotionally invested in romantic relationships and nearly always end up getting hurt. In retrospect, I’ve never been able to date anyone strictly for fun, or without expecting more from them than what they could give. I was with someone who outright told me that he was not ready for a relationship, and I respected his honesty and still respect him as a person, but regardless of my undying respect, he and I could never become a successful relationship. Because I cannot be an in-between girl.
So to you I say good luck, hun. I hope your efforts are not fruitless and I hope this man comes around for you. This is the first blog of yours that I have read and I will certainly read more. But just remember to look at yourself and remember who you are, because I could never be a girl who was okay with being in a casual relationship. It always ended up in heartbreak. Be careful, and I’ll continue to watch your blog and support you. :) Thanks for the post!
Me either! I doubt I’ll ever be okay with being in a casual relationship. But I’m trying to take the pressure off. Thanks for such a long comment :) Love your blog, BTW!
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