My life has changed in the last year and a half. This became clearer than ever as I visited my friend, Brye, this past weekend. She has been my closest friend since grade school and after many twists and turns in her own life, she finds herself the single mother of an 8 year old girl and a 5 year old boy. We laughed about the fact that, suddenly, I too am the step-mother of two kids who are the same ages. But now I also have The Lorax. This last fact is, above all, humorous to her and her family as I've historically never been able to take care of myself. But Brye put her finger on something when she said, "SR has done it all before so he can tell you what to worry about and what you need to do to take care of a baby." This, for sure, has made all the difference and certainly has resulted in The Bois being a calm, happy baby.
We ate the best bowl of pasta I've ever had, courtesy of Brye's dad, with a little red wine.
The next morning I scouted out a trail on a local map. It was part of The Ice Age Trail (famous in ultra circles because of the race with it's name), a thousand-mile footpath entirely within the state of Wisconsin. No bikes or horses allowed. It's absolutely astounding that such a thing exists, maintained cooperatively by local groups, and simply dedicated to the state's geological history. It seems like something that would be in Denmark, and not in The United States. And, to be sure, people are fighting feverishly against it, not wanting such a path to get in the way of their McMansions and gourmet Italian grocery store chains. The last part of my run was cut off by the building of new suburban things. Little do they know what they're destroying.
Up until that point, it was a glorious, spiritual run through fields and forests, over bridges, marshes and paths through overgrown long grass. (Should I mention all the poison ivy? I had a suspicion I didn't react to the stuff, but after falling into a plant of it, I'm happily convinced.) It was just me and my water bottle belt. I ran into no one else on the path except for the brief section when it goes through a park. I felt so strong and happy. As has become routine on long runs, I went through every possible emotion over the course of 3.5 hours, including bringing myself to tears.
By the end, I felt like a creature, just existing in the beautiful prairie land. But much like the Dire Wolf 12,000 years earlier, I wanted my mate. But SR was working in an ER far away. I knew once he heard about me finding a new trail, he'd feel as if I'd cheated on him. And that's exactly what he said.
I went to my parent's house to find them playing with The Bois. I went for a long swim in the nearby lake. I thought of how much I wanted SR to be there with me.
I sometimes still can't believe we've found each other. I used to say we fit together like puzzle pieces. And I still feel that way. Before I met SR, I thought I knew what love was, but I was wrong. All I can say is when you find it, you'll know.
Running Song of The Day: The Story by Brandi Carlile