I hit the track this morning with no particular plan except that I wanted to run where I could use my headphones without fear of being snuck upon. I expected nothing in return beyond the usual attagirl from my ego and the notion that maybe I had burned off the calories from last night’s wine.

I plugged in a soaring soundtrack—the same one I’ve been listening to nonstop since December—and I ran. I tuned out and gathered speed, rounding corner after corner until I realized I was doing my least-favorite and most-bemoaned workout. One lap, two lap, break. Repeat.

Again and again and again.

Then, something dislodged inside me and for the first time in several months, I felt strong. And powerful. And dare I say, indefatigable.

My gut and my heart have been sustaining me all these months, holding me upright and giving me much-needed endurance. My legs though, they have been weary and weakened by the simple task of putting one foot in front of the other.

Today, however, these legs propelled me. And when they did, my lungs, too often constricted and anxious, filled easily. The knot of emotions in my stomach loosened and my shoulders gave way, allowing the weight I’ve been carrying to fall behind and offer a tailwind instead.

Lap after lap I ran in the muggy darkness until there was nothing left. Nothing except the wisdom that even as a mess of tears and sweat, I am undeniably intact.

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