I fell down last night.
I haven't run in well over a week for various reasons and last night about 9:30 I decided that I HAD to go run. Right that very minute. You know what I mean. I felt like my very life's breath depended on it.
I was slow and shaky. It was very dark, but then I usually run in the pre-dawn darkness. Still, I was careful. I haven't been eating well and I was weak. With each precarious step I worried that my wobbly legs wouldn't hold me. But they are strong from years of running. My legs didn't fail me. My footfalls were nearly silent as I trudged through the warm, sleepy quiet of the neighborhood.
I thought to myself, "I still have this. I can still run. That hasn't been taken from me."
God chuckles when we become too self confident. Whether it was a bump in the pavement, weakness or God's sense of humor I'll never know. But as I gingerly stepped my way in front of my house, I fell. Hard. It seemed to take ages to hit the ground.
I lay there hurt, bleeding and eventually, sobbing, crying like a child for her mother, when she's fallen off her bike.
But my mother did not come. I'm not 5 anyway.
After several minutes, with great difficulty I slowly picked myself up, wiped away my tears and headed in the house.
Today I have a glaring wound on my hand, complete with gravel under my flesh that I cannot extract. My body aches from my plummet. My fingers are swollen from catching myself. My gash throbs with pain. The hurt is deep enough I'm sure I'll have a nasty scar to remind me of my fall.
It's ugly, but it's mine.
That's life. Sometimes you fall. Heck, sometimes you get shoved to the ground. The hurt is worse than you ever imagined possible. And you'll lie there in the darkness, bleeding, sobbing, waiting for someone to rescue you.
But they won't come. Because while it's okay to mourn your fall, you've got to eventually pick yourself up off the road or you'll get run over when day light comes. You have to dig deep to find the courage and the strength to pick your own self up. And yeah, you'll probably have a scar to remind you of the pain. But hopefully, eventually, with time, that scar will get lighter and fade. It will always be there, but someday, someday for sure, it won't hurt nearly as much.
And somehow, that makes me feel just a little bit better about my fall.