Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Drifting, Settling, and Dying.

Wow. Deep thoughts today. I have these a lot, and it feels really good to write them out. I might do this more often.

The following thoughts were inspired by 2 songs. Song titles, lyrics and my drifting thoughts are below:

Song #1 -- “Running to Stand Still" by U2
And so she woke up

from where she was lying still
Said we got to do something about where were going
Step on a steam train
Step out of the driving train
Maybe run from the darkness in the night
Singing ha la la la de day
Singing ha la la la de day
Sweet the sin
But the bitter taste in my mouth
I see seven towers
But I only see one way out
You got to cry without weeping
Talk without speaking
Scream without raising your voice, you know
I took the poison, from the poison stream,Then I floated out of here
Singing ha la la la de day
Singing ha la la la de day
She runs through the streets
With her eyes painted red
Under black belly of cloud in the rain
In through a doorway she brings me
White gold and pearls stolen from the sea
She is raging
She is raging and the storm blows up in her eyes
She will suffer the needle chill
She is running to stand still

This song is actually about drugs, but I find comfort in the title, because I often find myself feeling like I’m running to stand still. I’m never sure if I want to be staying or going. Do I want to drift, or settle? What are my options with all the circumstances in my life? I lean towards settling so I don’t lose some of the most important things and people in my life, yet I dream of drifting off to other places and exploring life. It’s a battle I will probably always be fighting. I love my life, and this is kind of a difficult part of it, but it also keeps it on edge. If everything were perfect, I’d most likely be bored.

I guess what I love so much about music, is you can take the lyrics and find a way to apply them to your own life. A lot of the lines from this song lean towards the drugs topic, but “poison” doesn’t necessarily have to be a drug.

I love the line, “We got to do something about where we’re going.”

Song #2 -- “What Sarah Said” by Death Cab for Cutie
And it came to me then that every plan is a tiny prayer to father time

As I stared at my shoes in the ICU that reeked of piss and 409
And I rationed my breaths as I said to myself that I'd already taken too much today
As each descending peak on the LCD took you a little farther away from me
Away from me

Amongst the vending machines and year-old magazines in a place where we only say goodbye
It stung like a violent wind that our memories depend on a faulty camera in our minds
But I knew that you were a truth I would rather lose than to have never lain beside at all
And I looked around at all the eyes on the ground as the TV entertained itself
'Cause there's no comfort in the waiting room
Just nervous pacers bracing for bad news
And then the nurse comes round and everyone will lift their heads
But I'm thinking of what Sarah said that "Love is watching someone die"

So who's going to watch you die?

This is a pretty sad song, but I was listening to it on my walk into work today, and it took me back to a place in my life that I think had to have been way scarier for those around me. Sometimes I just feel so happy to be alive and to have gotten through my battle with illness. Not just for myself, but even more so for my family -- because they didn’t have to watch me die. Instead, they can now watch me live.

I can almost put myself there, in the lyrics, “Love is watching someone die.” But not fully because I haven’t been there. I haven’t had to watch someone die. But can you imagine watching someone you truly love fade into death? A lot of you reading this may have already done so. When I try to put myself there, I see my husband, my parents, my brother, my friends… and it makes me want to stop thinking about it because it hurts. But if I keep thinking about it, and repeat that lyric in my head, it helps the thought be not quite as painful. Watching someone you love die has to be one of the most difficult things in a person’s life, I’m sure. But the feeling of pure, true love has to be so extremely overwhelming… So many times you hear the phrase, “there’s always something good that comes out of something bad.”

When you are alive, and your loved ones are alive, there are good times and there are bad times with each other. This is the way life is. But if one of these loved ones were to die, it seems that maybe you could take all the love, the good times and memories, and their deep love for you, ball it all up together, and permanently coat the inside of your soul with it. Maybe that’s kind a way of saying, “They’ll always be in my heart.” I wonder if maybe this could be one tiny morsel of "good" you can take from something so awful.

Sorry for the depressing blog post. Just thinking about stuff today. It seems like depressing stuff, but at the same time, it makes me happy inside. I am so happy to be here, and so happy and thankful for all those I still have with me in my life. And those that I don’t... well, they’re with me, too. Just in a much more personal way.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Leaving for S. Padre Island, TX tomorrow!

Well, I've been a slacker. I didn't blog about the Dragon Boat races or the 1/2 marathon (that I ended up not running). The Dragon Boats were a lot of fun, as expected. We didn't do quite as well as we had hoped, but it was still a blast. The 4imprint team paddled 3 races. We placed 2nd in our first race, 4th in our second race, and 1st in our last race... but it wasn't enough to make it to the finals. We did end up winning an award for the best supporting team for pledges, though. That was pretty nice.

I didn't run the 1/2 marathon. I'm a little disappointed in myself, but I'm trying to not be so hard on myself about it. I really wanted to give it a shot, but I was kind of nervous that after a very full day at the Dragon Boat races, I'd be pretty exhausted. Whenever I tell myself that, I get angry with myself for letting an excuse stand in the way of a potential accomplishment. I could've tried... instead I chose to go out for drinks after the Dragon Boat Races. BUT -- it was a really good time with great friends, and we had a REALLY fun time! So it's all good. I decided I would plan to run a FULL marathon next year. I already have reminders set in my calendar as to when I need to start training. I believe it will be in May.

In July next year, I am planning on through-hiking the Tahoe Rim Trail with a friend (Ken) that I met through my friend, Pam... I hope she joins us on the TRT hike, too!! :) That is the only 2 weeks I am going to have to work my marathon training around. I hope I can pull that one off. I'm already trying to psych myself up for the long runs, hard training and strict schedules. It's going to be a challenge, that's for sure! 26.2 miles... yikes!

I'm also planning on doing the Frozen Otter again in January. I look forward to finding another weekend that I can hit the Kettle Moraine area for another super-long day hike to prep a little for that. I just purchased and emergency bivy for the occasion so I don't have to carry along my entire tent (we are required to carry a shelter).

Other than that, hunting season is coming up, and it's looking like I'll be able to enjoy the whole week with dad, uncles, and part of it with my brother (whom I miss like crazy -- I just don't see him or talk to him as much as I should). I'm planning on making a huge batch of chicken taco soup for one of the group meals, and look forward to sitting in the quiet woods for hours on end day after day. I love that part -- but I love hanging out with my dad, bro, and family even more. I just love hunting season... I'll miss Adam, though. He's not a hunter...

The next adventure is South Padre Island, Texas. Adam's grandparents have wintered down there for years, and when his grandpa passed away, his grandma planned on going down and taking care of a bunch of stuff and staying there for the winter like she normally would. She asked us to drive her down if she would fly us home. We were thrilled at the opportunity to go... we'd always wanted to go, but the things just never worked out... in fact, we promised ourselves we were going to make it down there last year, and unfortunately we didn't make it while g'pa was still here. :(

But we did drive g'ma down there last year around Halloween, and we had a really nice time. I know we were helping her get down there, but I am so grateful and really appreciative of her giving Adam and I the opportunity to experience Padre. It's really nice to spend time with her -- she's got some great stories from the past and she's working on putting together really thorough photo albums, so those are really neat to flip through.

This year g'ma only wants to stay a week, so we're driving her down and back. I think we're all really excited about going again. Work has been a little stressful lately, and Adam and I have been so insanely busy all summer, we could certainly use the slowdown. So we're going to take it easy, drive down there, enjoy 4-5 days on the island, then drive back. I'll post some pictures when we get back. :)