December 27, 2012

Running And Writing

I run and I write.

Four or five times a week, I throw on my running shoes, usually mismatched socks, and head to the forest near my home. 











I head down the path to the left, and start running. I run five or six laps, for five or six miles, in the warm sunshine, the pounding rain, the hail and the blustering wind....














I love watching the leaves change, the seasons change, the weather change.














...and I love that the sunlight slips through the trees, as if it's following me, bright and cheerful...













For some reason I find inspiration in leaves. Golden leaves, burgundy leaves, emerald green and pumpkin orange leaves. I cannot get over how each leaf is completely different from another. Like people. All unique. All special.












ry of the ferns, the perfection of the white flowers.

I find peace in nature during my runs. The vibrant colors, the crystallized silence, the rustling leaves, the dead tree trunk with a new tree growing nearby, the curious squirrels, the darting mouse, the sneaky raccoon out in the afternoon, the arches of the branches, the symmetry of the ferns, the perfection of the white flowers.


I find humor in nature, too.


Can you see the cross? Every single time I run, I blow that cross a kiss and say, "Thank you, God, for the health and safety of my kids."











I think of the tree on the left as my late father's tree, the tree on the right, my late mother's...a bit strange to associate a tree with a parent, but these trees are standing together, on either side of my path, and I couldn't help but think of my beloved parents when I saw them. I do not think of the cancer that killed them as I run by, the chemo, the radiation, holding their hands as they left, I think of the happy memories we made together. I am past, for the most part, that terrible and tearful grief, and now embrace all the wonderful things we did together as a family, and my relationship with both of them. I let those memories comfort me and bring me a smile, or a laugh. My father was a runner, my mother was a walker, and I grew up camping. The trees are my way of remembering them.






















The two trees that cross each other on the right, I think of as my twins' trees. I thought the way the trees grew so close together was symbolic of their fun, funny, loving relationship. I lived in the hospital for six weeks when I was pregnant with them and prayed almost hourly that they would live. They did, and they have been a gift to my life ever since.

















This is my oldest daughter's tree. Growing straight and tall and strong, right into the blue sky. This tree will stay where it is for hundreds of years, but my daughter, with her adventurous heart, has gone to school on the east coast, in France, and now in Scotland. Still, there's something about that tree that speaks to me about her...

















I use sticks to keep track of the laps I've run. Can't keep the count straight if I don't as I'm running around in my own thoughts too much, too lost in my wild imagination and private story telling.












I used to try to solve hard problems and life's entanglements and issues while I ran. I no longer allow myself to do that. For one hour, I run. I daydream, I laugh, I think only pleasant and easy thoughts. I have found that my problems are always waiting for me at the end of the run, but for one hour, I let myself be me, for one hour, I leave everything else behind.














In 2013, I want to be outside more. I want to enjoy more brilliant sunsets, though not more sunrises. I want to be on our drift boat more in Oregon's rivers, I want to hike through old forests, I want to watch snowflakes fall and I want to run through the freezing cold waves at the beach. I want to breathe in cold mountain air, and walk alongside rushing rivers. Wishing you a year full of nature that soothes your soul, brings peace to your troubles, and offers you a bit of colorful relief from life. Cheers.



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12 Comments to “Running And Writing”

  1. Thank you for sharing your beautiful thoughts and photos about running, and your new year’s resolutions about spending more time outside in nature in 2013. I love how you connect the trees on your path with the people you love! Here’s to your happiness and success in the coming year.

    • Thank you for reading it! Hope you have a beautiful 2013, filled with lots of good books, good chats, and good coffee and chocolate!

  2. Sherie Nash says:

    How lovely to read the story of your ‘family’ and what brings them alive for you as you run for your health and for your spirit and for the love and spirit of your family. Thank you so much for sharing them with us. I love your reminder sticks, lost in the day dreams and imagination. You are my inspiration. Happy New Year.

    • ….awww, Thanks, Sheri.

      My runs are spiritual, that’s for sure. Loooove being out in nature. Love trees and leaves and squirrels and watching the weather and seasons.
      Happy 2013!

  3. Elizabeth Elser says:

    Thank You♥

  4. Thanks for the inspiration. I need to move more and get lost in my imagination. No wonder your books are filled up with joy, fun and life.

    • I think getting lost in your imagination, day dreaming, letting your mind fly free to relax and think, is so healthy. Healthy spiritually and mentally.

      So go daydream! Go get lost!

  5. Dear Ms. Lamb,

    I want to share with you how much I have enjoyed your books. I first became aware of you when I stumbled across Julia’s Chocolates. I loved the books cahracters so much that I decided to read them all (and in order). I’ve learned so much about life and how to live – your outlook is so real and thought provoking. I have laughed (The Last Time I Was Me) and cried my heart out (Henry’s Sisters, First Day of the Rest of My Life) and now learning how to get past the difficult and be strong (A Different Kind of Normal). This book is giving me the courage to finaly move on with my life without fear (going through a divorce) and begin to enjoy the things that have always brought me joy and peace.

    I want to say Thank you, thank you and God Bless,


    • Dear DeNise,
      I am so sorry it has taken me so long to reply. Deadline, then computer crashed. Hoping this letter finds you well and that darn divorce over. I’m so glad that my books have given you things to laugh about, think about…and do a little crying over. I think we women need to cry sometimes, we just hold it on in, and that can be very bad. So, crying over a book is just fine.

      I will be starting my next book soon….yes, indeedy, I will get back to work soon!!

  6. Running and writing reminds me of the things I have been missing in my life for the last 10 years and provides hope that they will return soon.


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Cathy Lamb
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