Wednesday, September 21, 2016

A Long, Sad Summer - Part 1

There have been many, many, many days in the past few months where I wanted to sit down and try to put into words what has been going on. I've started and abandoned so many entries that it borders on pathetic. Truth is, I just haven't had the words.

There are many reasons why I created and kept up with this blog. First and foremost, I started it mostly for myself. I have always kept some kind of journal. Among the things that I found in boxes of my childhood belongings are diaries (complete with cheap brass padlocks) from as far back as third grade, followed by spiral bound notebooks that I traded back and forth with my best friend throughout high school. In college, LiveJournal exploded and I started writing my daily thoughts and experiences on the web in 2003. I still thoroughly enjoy going back and reading old entries, which cover college, grad school, epic break ups, meeting my now-husband, and the start of my career. If not for those records, many memories would be long gone.

My last real entry in LJ was written in November 2011. By that time, LJ was a dinosaur akin to Myspace and Blogger was the new it platform, so I jumped format and RunEatPlayRVA was born. Much like that old personal journal, this blog is the place that I love to go to relive the past few years, to remind myself how far I've come; of the good times, bad times, silliness, and the hundreds of memories that have come from my new life as a runner in Richmond.

The secondary reason for starting this blog was that at the time, blogging was taking off and I really enjoyed finding out about other people's experiences in running through the medium. I wanted to get in on the conversation. I had always loved writing and interacting with people via my personal anecdotes, so it was natural.

Five years of blogging is an eternity in Internet years. I constantly scold myself for letting my poor RunEatPlayRVA sit abandoned. I regret having not turned to these digital pages to note my feelings, thoughts, and training over the past year (and then some) and for not sharing the many non-running adventures I've had in Richmond, because I love this city.

So what happened? Mainly, I got a demanding job where writing was my primary activity and it took all of my brain power to get through the days. When I got home, the last thing I wanted to do was write some more - it just felt too much like work. I took no pleasure in it anymore and it required far too much effort. And let's face it; blogging is not cool anymore as a social media platform. (Is the world "cool" even cool anymore? Somebody help me... I'm old and out of touch.) Even when I did post, it wasn't much of a conversation anymore.Everyone's gone to Instagram or Snapchat. I do IG but I've decided I am officially way too old and boring for Snapchat.

Blogging also stopped being cathartic for me. Somewhere along the line I stopped writing in my genuine voice and starting worrying about my "audience" (as it were). I would write a sentence 5 times and delete it for fear of how the tone might be judged or interpreted. The writing wasn't organic and it was too hard for me to force it into some kind of PC version of myself.

Well here's what I think about that now: screw it. I need to write again. I need to put out there what's been going on the past few months even if it serves no other purpose than me being able to come back here in September 2017 to see how far I've come. I also hope that it might help someone out there who is dealing with the same thing and needs to read about someone's experience.

Will my entries be perfect? Nope. They'll be stream of conscious again - the way that I write best. If you don't like them, sorry/not sorry. If you don't agree with the way I've gone about trying to right my situation, sorry/not sorry. If you don't like my attitude, sorry/not sorry. I am who I am. I'm not perfect by any means, I'm not some oracle or font of wisdom. That isn't ever what I set out to be in this space anyway; I just wanted to be me.

With that, I'm signing off this entry by really not telling you anything and being all vague about what's been going on the past few months. It wasn't intentional; it's just getting late. I'm not dying (only inside) or getting divorced or moving or homeless or jobless or anything that important. Oh and I'm NOT pregnant.

It's just this.