I can't remember when, exactly, I first read Run like you are six. It might have been when she first wrote it, or maybe some months later. What I do know is that I first read it long before I was ever a runner.
I imagine I'm not the only person who read it again this week.
It's still as beautiful as it ever was, but I'm a runner now and now it's different. She writes of running "for the feeling of being faster than everything else" and I get it. She talks of the "pure joy" and I get it. I want to punch the air and say "There's a subtext here that defies language, and I know exactly what it means."
I skipped my run this morning because I wasn't feeling up to it; I felt out of sync all day as a result. Her words kept running through my head. "She's right," I kept thinking. "Pure joy."
Christine, when I run tomorrow — and whenever I run — I promise to savour it, all of it: the joy and the weightlessness and the feeling of being fast. And when that feeling surfaces, I'll be reminded of you and your ever-enduring strength and grace.
Long may you run
long may you run
although these changes
with your chrome heart shining
in the sun
long may you run.
Boundless love to wertperch and imp/buddha, to lizardinlaw and to everyone who loved and will always love our dear grundoon.