(I tried to go for a run a few days back. I wanted to feel like things were okay, and in many ways, it was a day that felt very much less than okay. This void often drives me mad, and not often does this negativity find its way to the page. I prefer to keep such negativity separate from my writing. At the meantime, I felt like my body was ready for something light. It was a particularly hazy day, but I tried to eliminate any excuses. I jogged a few times down a long road near the campus, back and fourth at a constant pace. There was suddenly the tingling in my right ankle, the soft tease of an injury that was hell bent on staying. I felt so much sadness in my chest at that moment. I just needed to feel ok again, and yet, it just wasn’t going to happen.)
The feeling of emptiness does rise from my stomach ever so often, permeates to my chest, and soon it gets hard to breathe. A lot of people choose to write about these feelings, sing it in a song or turn to something more divine to get them to a safer, more comfortable space.
I choose to run.
Ever since I discovered running back when I was thirteen and awkward, I’ve been hooked. The feeling of control, solitude, defiance and spontaneity in the face of the depressing familiarity of life—a life that feels nothing more than a blank space when viewed from certain angles, at certain times. I don’t usually feel empty ( I consider myself an optimist, on the most part), but when I do, running always gets me back to where I want to be. (When the wind blows in your face and you’re surrounded by absolute civilisation or absolute nature and sometimes both and people are walking around, cars are chugging along lives are moving on but when you run you are moving through! You break into some routine you never once knew possible but now know to be infinite and you can’t explain to anyone because they’d find you too lame or ask you to channel these feelings into something with more form and precision and you are having none of it. I could go on).
Then I got injured in the middle of last year. It hasn’t been the same ever since, to put it simply. I was foolish back then. When injuries are fresh the key consideration is to always, always give it time. I don’t know how I could have thought of it otherwise. I tried to run it off albeit unsuccessfully and felt a lot of things give way, a lot of pain and a lot of warning signs ignored on the interim.
I don’t think I could ever forgive myself for that. Strange enough, there are a lot of things I can forgive myself for; missed opportunities, failed timings and lost feelings. It sucks for a while but as people we are bound to feel such things, bound to live with such disappointments. Whatever it is, I try to let go of these things in hope of a better tomorrow. I would love to blame myself, but what use is there? At every moment in time you just have to figure out whats best for yourself in a snap. There’s no revealing what the future holds so you’ll just have to feel around in the dark. Sometimes you fail at that, and so what if you do?
But this? This injury was just pure foolishness. I sacrificed something that I could have done for myself. That is one thing in the world you should never have to sacrifice; the things you can find joy doing alone.
I need to run again.
- Don’t blame yourself; the future is a dark space and you’re only groping around madly. It’s okay to fail, just carry on and continue struggling.
- The right balance between logic and instinct is the most sought after possession nowadays. People call this wisdom, but I feel that luck and chance has a big role to play in this. What do you think?
- Don’t let anything change who you are. Just keep to what you believe in, and stick to what you love regardless of the timing. The two toughest things in the world to deal with are not knowing what you love when the timing is right, and knowing with absolute certainty what you love when the timing is wrong. Both these situations are very central in shaping who we are and we should be wary of them.)