My Moving Meditation.
Seeking happiness can be a life long quest. Seeking happiness can be a quest that some may never conquer. To find happiness is an obscure and intangible idea. Some may find happiness in their job. Some find happiness in family. Some find happiness in travel. I contemplated some of the things that help me calm my inner storm and there are many; but there is one that has been there for many years and has never let me down.
I peak out the window to make a guess on the temperature. It looks warm enough to wear shorts and t-shirt today. The sun is bright as it shines in the window. The cat finds the rays and quickly calls the spot his for the day. It is early summer and the grass is finally green after a long winter. I check the trees to see if the leaves and branches are moving and the stillness tells me there is no sign of wind. A smile comes to my face without even realizing it.
My shoes go on, my ear buds go in, and I cue my play list. The trails are calling and I am answering them with a resounding ‘Yes.’
The cadence of the music gives my feet their rhythm. I make my way into the trails. The century old maples and oaks loom overhead to create my own outdoor room. I am welcomed.
The mud puddles from yesterday’s rain speckle the gravel trail. I don’t avoid them on purpose as the spray up the back of my legs is worn with honour. My mind is flowing free now and anything that was bogging me down has now been lifted up and sweated out. The hills test my legs and lungs and the valleys free me. Beams of sunlight cut through the branches casting shadows along the way. The once rushing creek is now a babbling brook whose gurgling is nature’s mantra. Running is my moving meditation.
Trail running exposes you to the wilderness in your back yard. The families of deer that cross your path as they look for dinner are never something you get tired of seeing. The chipmunks and squirrels scurry by. An eagle isn’t always in sight but when it is, you have to stop to look, as it never stops being amazing.
Running is one of those subjects that you either receive a really positive response to or a really negative response. I understand how some would not get the same enjoyment out of running as I would. It isn’t easy. I think one has to be somewhat masochistic in order to find the kind of enjoyment I do from it. There is this perverse joy in torturing yourself, sweating, and pushing your limits that not many other things can give you.
Running does and has taken me from deep, dark places where I didn’t think I would emerge from and it pulls me out and back into the light. Running was a companion when I had never felt so alone. Running has been my source of creativity and inspiration. It has helped me make life decisions. It has made me feel alive even when I thought I was going to die.
There are many things in life that bring me happiness; most of my happiness comes from my amazing family I have. I have good health and a job (not my most favourite part of my life but hey, I am employed). Running gives me the clarity to see what truly makes me happy. Seeking happiness can be this simple. Seeking happiness should be this simple; especially in our stormy, complicated world.