Are you there G-d? It’s me Amanda…

Life is what happens when you are trying to live.

I’ve written before how many reasons there are to run and especially run 50 miles. I have joked that it will be a spiritual experience, yet that is exactly what it is becoming. The layers of emotions that are being peeled off with week after week of training is startling. Each completed workout is a triumph by itself and sometimes leaves me empty. I have struggled with depression before and this last month has been a tough one. Things at home are challenging. Working two jobs has been exhausting. I lost my 3rd pet in 16 months unexpectedly in June due to Feline Leukemia. Unbeknownst to me and despite being tested at the shelter where she was adopted from, my sweet Zelda left me far too soon and a huge hole in my heart. Cosmo and Maggie passed due to old age and their loss was hard also as I have loved them since they were puppies. Zelda was a shock though. When you pour yourself into what and who you love there are times when you become thin and vulnerable.

I lay awake at night and wonder how am I going to do it?

Classes start next Monday and while I love the learning, I am not looking forward to the extra workload. I debated taking the semester off due to financial issues regarding tuition, plus again, life is just hectic. After looking into it though, I discovered it will be easier to just soldier on.

I lay awake at night and wonder how am I going to get it all done?

My brother called a few weeks ago, Margaret is having her reconstructive surgery right after the race, can I come help with the girls? Without question I will be there and happy to do so. I asked off both jobs and emailed professors. Again wondering, how am I going to get it all done? Manage my office work, school work, all the way from Texas while caring for 3 scared little girls and a more scared little brother?

The layers of emotion, the thinness of me, flayed and open…

Before I had my faith that carried me, but after my miscarriage years ago that started to fall away. No one prays harder than a mother for her baby, yet they are gone. Even after that I held on. I still prayed. I surrendered control to You. Yet I still lost and continue to lose those I love.

The hours spent on the road and in the woods are the times I feel most alive. It is lonely though too sometimes. My running partners have different goals and not everyone has the time or desire to spend 5+ hours in the woods, so often I run alone and I am fine with that. It is a journey I embrace. I finished my first 50k in 105 heat index and I had the best time! I have met amazing people, made new friends and saw spectacular beauty. And the layers keep peeling. I have so much gratitude for all of this! I am thankful for every run, that I am able to move my body and do what I love. I am thankful for the food I eat and the roof over my head. I am very thankful to have a second job that helps me to continue my education and learn new exciting things. I am blessed and tired.

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20+ miles in and still smiling!
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Yay! 31 miles!!
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The day after and headed home. A great race and experience.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Before I would quietly know, all will be okay. Before I lost my faith. Now the silence is deafening. I still know I will accomplish what I will, but I have realized in the last few months, somewhere over the years I have lost my G-d. Last night with tears running down my face, I realized I was embarrassed to admit that. I am embarrassed to admit I am scared to pray because I don’t think I am heard. Most of all is the pain of lost faith, of feeling alone. That is the hardest to process. My faith has always been strong, my love for Him seen in all people, creatures and the beauty around me. People who really know me, know I am a positive, lover of life and even receive great joy from the ridiculously mundane, such as the noise hamsters make chewing on carrots. What’s not to love about that?

I am searching for You- are you there? Do you hear me?

After writing this, maybe my faith isn’t completely lost, just in a struggle. I will continue to put one foot in front of the other. I will continue to live, learn and love generously. I am squeezing the most I can out of this life graciously given me even though at times it overwhelms me. I have joked more than once that 50 miles will be a spiritual awakening.  Now I believe deep down inside when I signed up for this race there was a piece of my heart still praying, praying that it will be.

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Berryman Trail