Running towards the fear

I saw this quote about two weeks ago. It immediately grabbed my attention and I’ve wanted to shout it out on various social media platforms. But I haven’t. Because I’m not yet ready to be brave enough to say it out loud. To announce what I’m planning on doing. 

It feels as if I could easily use this image for a number of incidents going on in my life currently. So I didn’t want to waste the words by sharing it too early or for something trivial. Because it isn’t. And the words are *that* powerful to me. 

I read it over and over again and it’s beginning to make sense. There are others that also resonate with me too. Such as these… 


So it’s the 32km Tough One race on Sunday. I’ll just leave it there… 


I got lost. I was running with a bunch of other runners, I had a map in my hand. But I got lost. What started as a relaxed, peaceful run turned ugly but it has made me reflect on my attitude these past few weeks.

When my running friend informed me that she would not be able to run, I still decided to head out with the rest of the running group, knowing full well that they were all way faster than me and would most probably run off after the first km. I still thought I was fine. Map in hand. Off I went.

It was when I got passed 7.5kms that I started to worry. Where was the turnaround point? Was the map right? Why was I stuck on such a busy main street? Where were the other runners? I couldn’t see any of them so I decided I’d better head back the same way I’d come. But somehow, I got it wrong. I took a wrong turn and landed up in the dodgiest of streets.

My gut told me things weren’t right. I suddenly felt scared, alone and incredibly vulnerable. All I wanted to do was cry. I started to blame others; the faster runners for not waiting, KK for not being with me; my gammy knee which had started to ache; pretty much everyone got a swearing. But most of all I blamed myself. I hated that I found myself in that helpless situation. I hated the fact that I ran so slowly and couldn’t keep up with anyone else. I hated running and I had no idea where I was going.Losing myself

It’s been two weeks since the incident and I’ve spent lots of time reflecting on that day. A lot of what I went through feels so familiar to how I’m feeling at the moment. I’m lost. I don’t know if it’s just the end of the year fatigue setting in, but I’m not myself.

It feels as if I’m still out there on those streets with my body filled with anguish and confusion. It feels as if nothing is familiar. The more I run, the less I see. The faster I go, the further everything feels. I’m not myself and my map is not helping me. I’m blaming everyone else for my lose of direction. I’m irritated with everyone, including myself.

I’ve lost sight of the goal. I’m lost. I need to find my passion again and I’m glad I’ve stopped to realise it now before it’s too late. Instead of blaming and allowing the situation to overwhelm me, I need to take back control.

I took this beautiful pic on my long run on Sunday, a week after I got lost. I stopped to appreciate things along the way.

I took this beautiful pic on my long run on Sunday, a week after I got lost. I stopped to appreciate things along the way.

This past Sunday I went out for a long run. Compared to the previous week, my head was right. I was prepared. I loved my run. Every single minute of it.

Even if you know me well, you don’t know this…

Polony. If there’s anything that makes me remember where I’ve come from in life, it’s that big fat pink roll of enterprise polony.

Even if you think you know me well, you don’t know that when I was growing up, life was a struggle. Curled upI was always scared. I was always waiting for something bad to happen. I used to curl up in a ball sitting on the back wall in the garden and rock. Just rock. It was comforting.

Unlike my life of luxury now, we never had cans of coke in the fridge. We didn’t have bags of chips in the cupboard. Underfloor heating was unheard of. I didn’t even know that toilet paper came in two ply.

We once lived behind the parking lot of the Checkers in Primrose on the East Rand. But we had polony.

Fried in margarine. Thinly sliced with cheese. Or just cut up into big blocks. Happiness.

Growing up, our daily chore was to clean the house every day after school. Once that was done, we’d have to make supper so that my mom would be able to pop in quickly, eat and head back to work a double shift to earn extra money. In my mind, this was the norm. It bothered me more that as a child of divorce I was stuck cleaning than the fact that my mom was absent. But we had polony so life was good. We were doing okay, right?

My mom remarried and moved away. Whenever we visit her, there’s polony in her fridge. Comfort.

Inside I’m still that scared, insecure girl. I still wait for bad things to happen. Beneath my happy smile is a frown of disappointment when so many people let me down. What exhausts me most is trying so damn hard. I keep trying…

To this day, I still eat polony.

(Disclaimer: I realize my blog post for the @Writersbootcmp is late but I wasn’t sure if I’ll be able to keep it up. This topic intrigued me. And I was craving polony.)