Last week I was attacked by a dog while I was running in my neighborhood. In my 14 years of running I have never had any real incidents which is amazing. I am pretty sure footed and quick, but a dog running full on into my legs from behind made all of those qualities obsolete. I fell very hard on my back and my head snapped back and hit the pavement. It could have been much worse if the dog who was standing over me growling had decided to take a chunk out of me. After a trip to the emergency room and a few to the chiropractor, I have been recovering at home.
Unable to do any painting or running or much less any walking has made me really focused on being thankful for a healthy body and working parts. I sorely miss running. Sorely. I curse that dog. Like painting, I really feel like myself fully when I run. I had not realized that before now.
Running started for me when a boyfriend made a comment to me about “carrying around a little winter weight.” Those of you who have seen me bodily know how ridiculous this is. But it was really hurtful and frightening and I immediately threw myself into running hardcore at 21. I ran every day for at least 6 miles. I also began to eat very little. If I missed a run it would ruin my day. If I had a bad run it would ruin my day. Gradually, my motivation changed to running to manage my depression. At this place in my life, as my self image improved and the depression has subsided I run because I love to run. It has been an activity that has birthed loads of creative energy and numerous lightbulb moments. So, I was back on the road today and though I didn’t run well, I was really thankful to be able to do it at all. Setbacks make the return more priceless.