As I sit down to write this blog post, I must tell you that it’s going to be midnight soon. I had a very bad day at work today. Though I did end up winding up the work satisfactorily, it was a long day. I could not get out of the premises until quarter to 9 in the evening.
I felt a bit frustrated. I want there to be more things in my life than just work. I want to read books, go out and exercise and laugh with people. I also want to have some idle time where I can listen to my own silence.
But, despite everything not falling in place, I decided to do myself a favour. Write a blog today before saying “Good Night”. I don’t want to go to bed having nightmares. So, in this post, I will tell you something on these lines.
I want to share with a fantastic story about myself. This story is about my initial days of struggle with running. Running did not come like I was born to do it. It was not something that I ever thought that I could enjoy. I always looked at running as an exhausting exercise. In fact, I could not imagine myself running more than a few hundred meters. I could not imagine the breathlessness that I would feel by running for a few minutes.
Don’t you also think so? How the hell could someone tell you that running is a matter of joy? You are struggling hard. Your body is breaking and your lungs are bursting. You can seriously feel the pain in your body and you feel like dying in a short while. Even your head is spinning and there is no guarantee that you won’t fall flat somewhere along the way running. But, despite all this, you wish to run and tell the world that it is fun. Oh! I forgot to mention the mental struggle that it could be every meter.
But, these are exactly the kind of situations we deal with in our daily lives. The battle starts with getting out of bed. We then rush to get to work on time. The hectic morning giving way to a hectic and a never-ending day. The whole day, we have “No time”. To eat, sit with peace or do something of our choice is beyond our imagination. We are like in a race to get one thing done after the other with no end in sight. And this happens with a large majority of the world for the simple reason: to put the food plate on the table for ourselves and our family.
These are the exact situations that have led me to run. 2.5 years ago, when I resolved to run 1800 km in 2018, I was going through the worst phase of my life. Every day was like climbing a mountain and coming down. Be it at work or at home, I was in conflict with my own self. I would pity myself that I could never do what I wished to do. I had so many dreams that I saw and hardly any of them saw the light of the day.
I did not like the job. I had a completely different idea about it. After a few months of the honeymoon phase, the situation was no different than the previous workplace. In fact, I had started to miss my old workplace for what I was going through here.
I could not get time for myself. My wife and kids would be on one side and my work on the other. And I was just in the middle of the tug of war. But, amidst all this, the biggest pain that I was going through was the loss of my dad. I had lost him a few years ago.
When he was here, he was my pillar of confidence. No matter what crap my life was, I knew I could go to one person who would give me hope. He had always been the torchbearer in my life. He had pulled me out of the gravest of situations. There was love, motivation, inspiration and of course, hope all around him. He has been the most positive person I ever met in my life. And he still rules the roost.
After his departure from the world, my world had turned upside down. I had stopped enjoying the activity. I was in a better position financially and socially. But, emotionally, I was in a deep valley. In fact, I had hit the nadir of my despairs. So, when nothing would seem to work for me in life, I would often get lost thinking about the golden moments shared with dad.
And one day, this happened and it changed my life. I woke to bright sunlight beaming through the window of my bedroom. And it flashed a thought to me. My dad would often force me to wake in the morning but I would not. He had to force me to get up. And by the time I would open my eyes, my dad would have left for work. But, when he came back, he would give me the peace of my mind.
He always believed that an early riser is an empire builder. He is the one who set his life on fire. He served in the Indian Army for 26 years and every single day, he would get up in the morning early at 4:30 am. He would go for a morning PT and come back from PT by 7 a.m. He was a physically and mentally fit guy. He was a cool guy too.
But, I hardly gave him the luxury of seeing his son building an empire. This morning when I woke up with a heavy feeling of the loss of dad, I took out my slippers and just moved out of the house. I went around the house carrying the thoughts that I probably found in my dreams. And these thoughts were still there. As I was strolling in slippers on the road opposite the house, I was struck with a lightening, “Dad used to run every morning!”
Was it the reason for all his wisdom and cool attitude towards life? Was it the thing that kept him sane amidst the madness of the world and the uncertainties of living a nomadic life?
End of Part 1…to be continued
a runner, a fitness enthusiast