I Run to Heal

duskrunI love my mornings and am usually energized after a shower and cup of coffee. I’ve never been a morning exerciser though (meaning really early, 5:30 or 6:00). I think the perfect time to go for a run is 8:00 am, however that doesn’t jive with my current work schedule {summer I miss you}. I’ve switched to exercising after work, which most days is very doable. I’m flexible in that if I need to stay longer at work, I will and move my work outs around. My go-to and favorite work out continues to be running.

Tuesday night I headed out at 6:00pm for a short, 4 mile run at dusk. It was absolutely beautiful. Stress just melts away when this is the scene ahead of you.

When I see this picture, it reminds me of peace, of calm, and of my mom. I always think my mom when I run outside. It’s not that I don’t allow myself to think of my mom throughout my day, however, when I run my mind clears and I feel closer to heaven in some way. My mom loved being outside, taking walks, biking, and exercising. Without this outlet to mourn peacefully and calmly, I wouldn’t emotionally have the strength to deal with her loss day to day.

If someone were to ask me why I run, it would be hard to incorporate every aspect. I probably would say something along the lines of the health benefit. But honestly, it’s been an outlet for me to release frustration, pain, anxiety, and to mourn the loss of my mom. 

Before my mom passed in June 2012, I distinctly remember her smiling at me after surgery and telling me I was her “ray of sunshine.” I always look to the sky when I see bright rays of sunshine, most often during my runs, feeling in some way a connection again with my mom. It’s hard during these times of loss because all you have left are these small moments.

The answer to why I run is not simple and running is not something I ever envisioned myself doing. However, it brings me peace, sanity, and closer to my mom and that’s not something I’m willing to give up anytime soon. 

To grieve is to mourn publicly. I thank you for letting me mourn the loss of my mom publicly because it helps me to heal.


8 thoughts on “I Run to Heal

  1. Thank you for writing this post. I’ve still not mustered up the courage to write about the loss of my dad. He passed last year in September. I often think of him when I am running. I often think about how he spent the last two years of his life in a wheel chair after suffering a stroke. I believe that he is now back on his feet again, somewhere up there in the clouds. And I know that, from up there, he is cheering me on.

    • Thanks for sharing. It brought tears to my eyes.

      It’s difficult to write about, but at the same time kind of freeing. I know some people shy away from talking about death, but I need to still share about my mom because I love her so much. And sometimes it’s easier to write what we don’t/can’t say out loud. Thanks for reading. 🙂

  2. This post was beautiful, and brought tears to my eyes! I recently came across your blog and have enjoyed reading your posts. I am also a speech therapist in an elementary school :o) so we can relate on many things!

  3. Gorgeous post, Nikki.

    I’m so sorry that you lost your mother, but what a great way you have found to spend time with her again.

    That picture is awesome. I love a good sun set/rise!

  4. Beautiful post! I relate in many ways. I found running a year after losing my husband. I find myself thinking of him often while running. I was never a runner, nor imagined I could be, when he was alive. But this new passion has helped me grieve.

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