The Wagon

I have fallen off the wagon before. It’s not a new thing.

I have fallen off the wagon before. It’s not a new thing.

I have fallen off the wagon before. It’s not a new thing. Most times, I’ve picked myself up. Trusted that I could. Knew that I would hear the voices of those in my world tell me to “dust off and get back on the ride”. But last June, the death of my mother changed everything for me. Finding my mother…gone… was perhaps the single most traumatizing thing that I can remember happening in my life.

The wagon was there, the cheerleaders were yelling “Dust yourself off, get back on!” But their voices got further and further away…and the wagon left without me this time.

Race for the Cure Detroit, May 2012

Race for the Cure Detroit, May 2012

Now trust me, when it comes to excuses, I wrote the book. Not the entire book, but let’s just say I’ve been a regular contributor. Making excuses actually meant I cared, but this time I’d even forgotten how to do that. No excuses. No explanations. I had gone into full blown mourning. Grief had taken hold of my body, my mind, my soul. Every Facebook memory from the year before had reminded me of all the time and energy I had spent in building the “me” I wanted to be.

Today marks the anniversary of the first 5K I ever ran. In May 2012, I ran the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure in Detroit with my sister running alongside me, yelling “Water is for weaklings! Peeing? Really?” I ran that whole race, non stop. I encouraged others to run or walk it too. I was surprised at my own strength. From there I went on to run over 24 races and even completed a duathlon.

Which brings me to now. The phone rang this morning. It was a dear friend of mine who did the race with me the first time She called to ask me where she could meet me on the route today. She just knew I’d be there. Me? On the route? Today? Nope, I am at home. My race days seem a world away.

Toronto Caribbean Carnival, August 2014

Toronto Caribbean Carnival, August 2014

I am just now starting to feel myself again. My toes, my desire to move my body again. To dance. To eat well. To love me again. To honor this body again. I gotta do it. Next weekend, I am registered for a half marathon I paid for before my Mom died. I may not be able to run it, like I had in the past. I might have to walk. Or perhaps, the wagon will circle back and I’ll climb back on. #wegotogether

– K.G.

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