A Broken Winged Bird

Langston Hughes wrote a line that resonates in my heart as I run into 2014 and my year of hope.  He wrote “Hold fast to dreams for if dreams die, lie is a broken winged bird that cannot fly.”  Hope at some point becomes about a choice and I am on that threshold of leaping.  I stare into the mirror and I see a girl who is often paralyzed in fear and indecision staring back in the warped reflection.  Lately, however, I have begun to see sparks of strength and belief that I am getting stronger and that I am ready to make those steps of change in myself so that there is a future I run to versus hiding in the shadows of survival. 


In order to leap into my year of hope, I have taken stock of my strengths.  I am the happiest and most grounded when I run outside.  It is there that the unrest in my heart and the fear is allayed.  I simply fall into my faith.  In the pounding of my feet and in the miles I run, I find peace, and if not understanding, a quiet acceptance of whatever life has thrown at me.  Even the tough times and tears  are able to find a place in the quiet rhythm of miles gone by.  I am not a crier—never have been—been in my running, I am at my most vulnerable and my most open state.  The masks are gone and I simply stand and am able to simply be me.  Those feelings are hidden from view, but my writing is my transparency.  I am not an ice maiden and I deeply feel the acute loneliness and the longing for the life I thought I would have.


I have already made steps in challenging my mind.  I lived in a widow’s fog of disbelief and lack of sleep for much of two and a half years.  I realized that my passion came in speaking about resiliency and my military family.  I looked in the mirror one day and said that I could do something about this fire or I could be sitting in the same place one year later having never moved.  I chose to move.  That singular decision gave my life a renewed sense of purpose.  I may not impact great change, but a small ripple might occur .


As I stared at the girl looking back at me, I realized that I am lonely.  I am well connected through Facebook and I run marathons and work full time, yet I do not go any where and I do not have a “battle buddy”.  I recently realized that I had nobody to call when I needed to go to the hospital.  I was terribly sick, yet I had nobody to call locally.  It isn’t a good feeling to wonder how long it would take for someone to realize I hadn’t shown up for days.  This feeling hasn’t changed, nor has my life in this area, but it is going to.  How do I know this?  School will not last forever and I have a plan to grow myself.  While school has taken all of my time, I will be done in August.  I will leap into finding a running group locally, a Meet Up Group, and maybe even go out on a date.  Who knows, but the point is hope means being able to see beyond fear.


Hope is what I stand on.  I am grateful for the life I have and I see sparkles of promise in my future.  I know that some days hurt more than others and I know how alone I feel, but I believe  what is to come.  I stand strong and I am ready to step in faith towards a fuller life that will bring a sense of belonging.Image#

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