Just over one year ago I was training for a marathon, eating lots of peanut butter, taking pictures of my feet and trying to figure out how to fit everything I owned in my little silver car.
Today, I’m training for a marathon, eating lots of peanut butter, taking pictures of my feet and recently unpacked everything I own from my little silver car.
So here’s the question, for the past year and 19 days have I been driving around with everything I own in my little silver car?
Luckily for my back (and my sanity) the answer to that is no. But not-so-luckily for my back (but fine for my sanity), 12 days ago I drove with everything I own in my little silver car from my summer apartment in Hartford to my new home in Maryland.
New state, new running shoes, new University, new peanut butter brand (they don’t have Teddy’s in Maryland), new roommates, new glasses…in some ways it feels like new pretty much everything.
A year ago it would have been impossible for me to go anywhere without seeing someone I knew. It didn’t matter if it was the hospital , the grocery store, class or out on a run, someone would spot me, wave at me, say hi, get me side-tracked in a hour long discussion or convince me to do something (like eat ice cream) that my lactose-intolerant self really should not do.
But when I was grocery shopping last Thursday I realized something…I won’t see anyone I know. Not in the cereal aisle or working at the checkout (like at good, old Market Basket). Not in the parking lot or on my drive back home. At the time, I knew four other people in the entire town, and three of them lived in my house.
To go from longing for a moment of peace and quiet, to wishing that somehow I would recognize someone, just simply spot a familiar face across the store has been shocking. Maybe I really do need other people to feel energized…(okay I know I’m an extravert).
But that very night, this idea led me to do a quick google search and impulsively sign up for a community running group. I paid the $10 dues and marked off a big blue square on Saturday morning in my planner, “8am run with new group.”
And it worked.
Yes the run worked (legs moved forward for 4.5 miles), but it worked!
The next day, out on my own for a 15 mile run I was going along a new found running path when I saw a small group emerge out of the woods and turn onto my trail. I had seen many other runners out that morning. A few had waived, one had smiled, others had simply nodded their exhaustion. But this group, they all waived, they all smiled and one of them called, “hello Julia, good to see you out again!”
I mirrored her, smiling, maybe Maryland wasn’t going to be so different after all.