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  • Writer's pictureJulie Gerrish

The muddy run of life

I was running today through the woods when I stepped in some mud with just one of my shoes. Just a few steps later, that same foot stepped through a makeshift wooden plank into the mud again.

I stopped to survey the damage. One shoe muddy and wet but overall fine, and breaking through the board didn’t hurt my leg at all. I kept running, and as I ran, I started thinking about how these two experiences were metaphorically similar to my life right now: despite the mud and trauma of the bridge breaking, I didn’t get hurt. I kept running, and I still enjoyed my run. I could clean the mud off my shoe when I got home (I didn’t though; it’s still dirty).

Hyperaware, I started thinking about how my shoe was an analogy for the messy parts of my life. As I continued my run, I noticed that some of the mud wore off my shoe, but the dirty outline remained around the edges, a reminder of where I had been.

Because of the sloping roads we have around here, I prefer to run in the middle of the road, where it is the most comfortable and optimal for my run. Once in a while, a car went by and I had to move to the side, which I thought of as a blip in the journey: an obstacle that sidelined me momentarily. Afterwards, I would move and take my place proudly back in the center of the road; back on track.

These past couple of years have been tough on all of us in many different ways.

Sometimes you might get one shoe muddy. You might get both shoes muddy. You might not be the fastest. You might get sidelined once in a while, but you can always get back on track, and you can still enjoy the journey.

I don’t know what the future will bring. I don’t have a crystal ball to tell me what to do. I do know that it’s okay to get your feet muddy, it’s okay to fall through the cracks sometime and to get back up and keep going. I want to get down in the dirt again and again. I want to get my feet muddy, because sometimes that is where the best things happen, and where I will find the richest rewards.

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