Note: This was written before I competed in the Two Oceans Ultra Marathon.
Not too many days ago from typing this, I had a meltdown.
Like 11 a.m. on a Wednesday soap opera meltdown.
I was running, trying to beat off pent up emotions, and I stubbed my toe on a rock. The gates were open.
Using a four-letter word of fun, I spiked my water bottle into the ground and screamed, with both hands and my head to the sky, “I give up.” I then fell into that grass and began sobbing. After a few minutes I got up, but it was the first of my nine-mile run and, although the first was the most dramatic, there were other temper tantrums.
A few days later, I told my friend Delia about it and her reaction was sort of like duh. She reminded me of the constant pressure I’ve been putting on myself with school (and just trying to be the best PCV I can) and the ultra marathon. To her, my fit was inevitable.
It’s true that I have been going a few speeds faster lately. I want to complete this marathon for so many reasons that not all of them are apparent yet. I took on an external class, which have more pressure because the students are expected to pass a national exam, because I wanted my final year to have oomph. There are all host of other things going on and the small stumbles led to a mountain and I cracked.
I am glad I did. I spend too much time trying to be strong to the external world that I let it build. Running, not to be all yogi or anything, has helped. But sometimes you just need to cry.
When I was in high school, I was dating a guy who had been called to active duty overseas. Some days, the amount of missing him and the worry of what could be happening was so strong I would reserve time to cry. “I think I will have a good cry tonight,” I would tell myself while at work or school.
That isn’t such a terrible idea. If I haven’t expressed this yet, living and working in a developing country thousands a miles away from your loved ones is HARD. Not every day is awful, no, much of the times is really good, great even. But on those days when the whole universe is out to make my life unpleasant, maybe I just need to make time to cry. Put on Adele or Bon Iver and let it flow. There is no shame in that.