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Real Life

September 18, 2009

I cried during my run this morning.
My route took me through the Mall, and as I entered the shelter of the American Elms I thought of how I exercise, and participate in endurance events for Dad. I do it because he cannot, I do it to honor him and make him proud. I do it for him and I do it for me. I connect with him.

There I was running under these majestic trees, converging of city and nature of hard lines and twisted branches. The tears just came, my heavy breathing and beating feet couldn’t hold them back. I felt him, standing at the end of the Mall cheering me on. Every bench I ran by I thought, I could just stop and sit down and cry and then finish my work out. But I pushed on. I fixed my gaze on where he’d stand, right at the end of the row, right under the last canopy of trees. His smiling face, his hands clapping, all for me.
When I turned the corner back on to the East Side drive, I left the magic behind me. I wiped the tears from my cheeks and I looked ahead.
Its real life, this mixing of here and gone, body and soul, reality and magical thinking. It is a part of my real life. And then I got a taste of it even more, the real world, when I was stopped 50 feet later to allow pedestrians to cross in front of me to claim their seats in the Bandshell for Oprah in New York.
It was real life, and real life in the park this morning.

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