March 27, 2016

A Pause

Sunset over the Hudson River -- Such a beautiful visual goodbye
We spent last Sunday after the race making last minute travel plans to go to E's grandpa's memorial services.

Monday, we fit in a normal work day, and then Tuesday afternoon we were on a plane.  Wednesday it was a day full of driving with family and attending the wake (where we were comforted with this absolutely gorgeous sunset).  Thursday was a chapel service, another long drive, and the internment service.

I was raised in a Christian environment, was confirmed Lutheran (which means 3 years of reasonably diligent Bible study classes) and have only ever attended Christian funerals.  Today, while I think of myself as a spiritual person, I don't self-identify as belonging to any religion.  But damn if funerals don't remind me that there are some very good reasons why religions exist.

I said the Lord's Prayer 3 times in 2 days.  I bowed my head and joined in group prayers too many times to count.  I crossed myself after saying my final goodbyes to such a sweet grandfather figure.  I listened, and was comforted yet again by Psalm 23.  These rituals, the only ones I know for death, are sad and almost immediately bring me emotionally to all of the other losses I've experienced.  But they are also calming, comforting, and very helpful to remind me that the grief of death is a thing that is a part of life.  And we, the living, will continue forward.

As you might imagine, running was almost non-existent this week in terms of importance given all the logistical needs and family emotional obligations.  Monday, I rested.  Tuesday I returned to the jump-rope interval/core workout to give my legs another day of recovery from the race and I spent the next 4 days with very sore arms, shoulders and core.  Wednesday AM, I fit in a quick 3.5 miles on the treadmill and was very pleasantly surprised at the paces I could maintain for some harder long intervals.  Thursday and Friday were much too busy to fit in any runs (although the path along the Hudson looked very enticing and I would have loved to find a way to make it happen).  Saturday, I did an easy 2 miler, and today I slogged through a slow 10 miler.

Total mileage for the week:  18.06, which is fine with me.  I figure it's enough for maintenance of whatever minimal fitness gains I've made in 2016, and given everything else that was going on, I'm calling that a victory.


Jen said...
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Jen said...

I'm amazed you got any running in this week. Sending you and E hugs.

bt said...

Thanks, Jen.

Arvay said...

What a beautiful photo. I'm sorry for your and E's loss. I'm sure he was happy to see the extended family together from his perch. :)

bt said...

Thanks, Arvay. I'm sure you're right. I always imagine my Dad waiting in line to welcome everyone I've lost since his death and I imagined the 2 of them looking down on us, and, of course, pulling a gorgeous sunset for us.

Cat said...

I love this post. I'm so sorry for your loss but my heart nodded along at the comfort that 'religion' can give you at these times. I've always felt it as a faith thing but there is definitely an element of ritual in it as well. I'm glad that you were comforted. xx

bt said...

@Cat -- thank you for your gladness at my comfort in the rituals of religion -- it really is an amazing thing and I'm grateful I am blessed to experience it.