Saturday, October 23, 2010

I went for a run today. I know, I know...I'm supposed to just be swimming with the occasional bike ride thrown in. In general that is the case, but today was different. Today I needed to get out in nature and run, and not just any run, a trail run. Originally I was thinking of running the Sachuest loop a few times, but I changed my mind and opted for a little known gem of a running route around here. It's a trail that runs from Newport National Golf Club to Glen Farm. It parallels a road that features prominently in my bike rides, but you'd never know it. I last ran here in November 2009. I wasn't escaping a sick ward of a house this time, but nonetheless there was a reason I needed route on this day. The experience is nearly unparalleled; no people, no sounds but your breathing and your feet on the dirt and leaves. You get into this rhythm where you're just weaving through the trees. As the leaves fall it's harder and harder to see the path, but if you allow yourself to relax and just go where the terrain allows you to go you'll find you are moving the right way. It's so easy to lose track of time, to just exist in the moment. You're cruising along straight towards a large tree with an old stone wall behind it. You don't break stride because it must be the way, but what about the wall? You lean around the tree and straight through a previously unseen gap in the wall. It's work but it heals the soul. There's so much majesty around you, you are so small, you have no choice but to remember your place in this world.

We went to church today. This is a tough on for me. It's not a skipping church is what the cool kids are doing, thing. I have some very real, very personal reasons why. No I'm not discussing those here. The thought of attending "church" elicits am almost Pavlovian response from me now. I regret that I can't communicate the issues effectively. I'm also torn because I do believe in allowing my kids to learn and make their own decisions. I believe in supporting my wife with things that are important to her. At some times I'm better at that than others. This is a "me thing." I promised 17yrs ago that I would raise my kids in the Catholic Church. Even then I knew I wasn't really telling the truth. If it happened, well it wouldn't be with whole hearted enthusiasm. If they end up choosing a church, that's fine, but I need them to have a choice. And as for me and my lie, well I'll bear the burden of that one.

Alexandra wants to know about God. But you see, I don't believe you learn about God in church (and try explaining to a 6yr old why you eat the bread and drink the wine). My experience is that you learn more about Man in church than God. If you want to learn about God, come run on my trail.