How Things Change: A Trail Run.

March 9, 2012 at 12:24 pm | Posted in And I ran (I ran so far away), Choosing Happiness., Moving On., My life | 8 Comments

A looooooooong time ago, I was in school to get my MBA. And part of the MBA program was a paid internship. I started working at a high-tech company in the marketing department.

And I met a man there. An attractive, intelligent, really sort of amazing man. BUT, see, there was a problem. I was engaged and he was married. And (I shudder now) had young kids at home. And so Married Man and I hung out with our other work friends, and we stayed in touch via email when I went back to finish out my last few months of school. But we were just friends.


A couple of months later, though, it turned into something more. My engagement fell apart, partly because of my feelings for him – I felt like there was no way I could marry my fiancee if I had doubts about our relationship enough that I’d find a relationship with a married man as an alternative. So he and I broke up.

My married man stayed married. And honestly, I didn’t want anything more from him. I started to doubt the institution of marriage, since so many people got married for the wrong reasons. I knew that Married Man was “safe” because there was no way he’d leave his wife.

And I allowed myself to fall for him. Hard. We spent a year or so in our relationship before I realized it was an awful, awful idea. And it took me a much longer time to extract myself from the grip of my feelings about it.

Our first ‘date’ was at a state park near the company in which we worked. I haven’t been there since.

Yesterday, I went to that state park yesterday for a run.

It’s close to my new client, I needed to get a run in, and I had a couple of hours to kill before dinner with a friend. I wanted to run someplace where I wouldn’t have to worry about traffic, and though I hadn’t been there in almost 15 years, I remembered a lot of trails.

And it was a GORGEOUS day – perfect for a trail run.

When I drove into the parking lot, I had a flash of memory. But then I wondered: am I even in the right place? I honestly didn’t recall a lot of the place. So I changed in my car, then got out, and hit the trails and just ran.

And the whole time I was running over roots and rocks and up and down hills (OMG so. many. hills!) I was trying to remember what it was like to be the Serenity from years ago, who fell in love with a married man.

I couldn’t.

I’m not that girl anymore.

And maybe it was the endorphins, or the wind, or the rush of jumping over rocks and logs, or the fact that I haven’t been in the woods for WAY TOO LONG… but when I finished my run, I felt cleansed somehow. Like I had finally put down a burden of hurt and guilt and the decisions I made way back when. (I mean. HE HAD KIDS. I can’t even IMAGINE betraying my family like that.)

And at the end, my leg hurt, I was sweaty and tired, and it was later than I expected.

But I was also completely in love with my life.

I am really, really lucky. Lucky to have a man who loves me and our son unconditionally, who works his ass off for his family, who will sacrifice his own health to make us happy. We are surrounded by the love of amazing friends and family.

My life has changed so much since I was at that state park.

For the better.


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  1. Aw, loved this post. Those touch-points that bring us back full circle somewhere, to see how far we’ve come. So good.

  2. That’s awesome. Remember that moment, how you felt today, the next time things get hard. It won’t make the difficulty go away, but it might lessen it somehow.

  3. Oh how I love this post! I really, really do!

  4. Loved this post. SO much.

  5. Few of us are who were used to be. Everyone has a before and after and if they say they don’t they are lying. I am really happy that you went to that park and had an A-HA moment 🙂

  6. What an inspirational story. I’m so glad you feel so much better about your life than you did then. Sometimes it’s good to have those moments, to be reminded of where we’ve been and how far we’ve come.

  7. Great post. Love how in the end a place of discomfort was able to cleanse your feelings and ultimately remind you that you love your life now.

  8. I loved this post. It is a great feeling when you can let go of some less than stellar feelings and recognize the good things you have now.

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