portrait of a life: born to run (pt. 2)

Three years ago, I had a dream. In it, I am being told to run. I asked where I was supposed to go and what I was supposed to do when I got there, but the instruction remained the same: just run.

Stop thinking so much. Just go.

I even wrote about it.

I recall this dream frequently in recent days. I feel caged up with a desperate need to just… go.

I played outside with Daisy Saturday. I thought of opportunities I have. Scary ones. Exciting ones. A whole future of unknowns spooling out before me, inviting me to come and see.

I have the choice to run forward, or I can hang tight where I am. Could it really be so bad? I’m pretty good at managing my life as it is.

A thought stops me. A book I read. Born to Run by Christopher McDougal.

There’s a specific quote, spoken by an elder of an ancient Mexican tribe, the Tarahumara, known for their incredible ability to run exceptional distances without exhaustion or injury.  The elder is speaking to a young Tarahumara boy, dreaming of the day when they are no longer bound by earthly bodies and are free to roam as spirits over the earth. He says:

You are alive because your father could run down an antelope; he is alive because his father could outrun an Apache war pony.  This is how fast we are weighted down by our sapa, our fleshiness.  Think how you’ll fly once you shuck it.

Yes, I’m pretty good at managing my life in fear. But I ask: what if there is more? Beyond the boundaries of control, of fear, what waits for me there?

Fear makes me evaluate something and only commit to it if I can guarantee the outcome will serve me.  If I cannot guarantee a positive outcome, I retreat.  But I have come to believe that maybe love is purpose driven, not outcome driven.  Maybe, just maybe, when love knocks on our door and asks us to go on an adventure, it doesn’t have an expectation.  Maybe it just has anticipation.

I think most of my days so far have been full of God grabbing my hand, smiling, and saying, “Think how you’ll fly once you shuck it.”

And these days running looks like listening to Jade Bird with Daisy, getting wrapped up in good conversations with mentors, finishing that book I was excited to read, listening to Coast Modern while I plan a trip in the summer. It’s the smell of my house when it’s freshly cleaned, the feeling of my floors right after they’re mopped.

I’ve felt hope the past two days, something comforting hanging in yesterday’s air that made me feel nostalgic and grateful.

“Think how you’ll fly once you shuck it.”

Yes and yes and yes.

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