All across social media people are posting “Throwback Thursday” pictures and reminiscing about old times. I’ve decided to write a series of posts telling a “Throwback Thursday” story explaining why I run and why I am who I am. This will be the first post in the series and I will continue to post these every Thursday until I run out of things to throw back to or until “Throwback Thursday” becomes an antiquated concept.
I want to acknowledge that the name for my blog came from my husband, Phil. Although I was not clever enough to come up with the name on my own it is very fitting for my blog–and who I am.
In many ways I’ve always had to take The Road Less Run, sometimes because I am stubborn and other times because it was just part of my life plan to have to overcome obstacles and take a different road than everyone else. I’ll begin with why I started running. There are several variations of this story and the one I usually tell when asked why I run goes something like this: I decided to run because I can’t kick, throw, catch, hit, jump, score goals, shoot baskets, skate without falling down, swim well, ect. I usually explain that I am just not athletic. I sometimes throw in an antic dote about how my uncle used to coach cross country and I wanted to run for that reason. I’m sure I’ve come up with several reasons to explain why I run but the truth is they are all only partially true. I was never a very popular child when I was growing up. I didn’t have a lot of friends and I often got picked on for having to wear glasses, eye patches, and for just not being able to see(do not feel bad for me). I would fall down, trip over things, and I wasn’t the person you would want on your kickball team at recess. Not many people know this but I have monocular vision as a result of being born with crossed eyes . As a kid I had 5 surgeries to attempt to correct this but it just never worked out that I could see out of both eyes at the same time. I’m not blind in one eye, I can see out of both of them, just not together. Usually I see from my left eye but if I get very tired it switches over to the right eye–I know it’s a hard concept to understand but this is just how I am. This is basically why I am not ‘athletic’. I have no depth perception, my peripheral vision isn’t as great as it could be, oh and I can’t see 3D so I’ll probably never go to a 3D movie with you. It took a while for me to comprehend what was going on when I was younger as far as why I couldn’t do the things my peers were doing without getting hurt or taking forever to do them, why I had to wake up at 5 am and drive to a far off land for a doctor appointment, why I had to wear eye patches and glasses, and why I simply wasn’t good at sports. It was frustrating but the older I got the better things got. I don’t know if it was because I just learned to see the way I see and my body just adapted or if it was because I decided that there is no way to prove that the way I see is wrong and the way everyone else sees is correct–maybe both. Eventually, as I got older I was able to get by without having to share this problem with everyone around me and I was able to keep it to myself. That’s when I decided that I should try running if I wanted to do a sport. I figured it was the easiest activity to get involved in without having to tell anyone I couldn’t see properly and I thought if no one knew I would stop being ridiculed for my lack of perfection by my peers. It seemed simple enough–just run in a straight line and then turn on occasion.
The decision to run was solidified when I kept tripping over this raised floor outlet in my middle school and getting sent to the nurse’s office because I would fall so hard when I would trip over it as I was leaving the cafeteria. I would get nervous after lunch everyday because I was worried I would do it again. The last time I tripped on that I decided to go out the other cafeteria door and also that I would definitely try running in hopes that it would be a sport I could participate in and make new friends without complications. Sooo….I signed up for middle school track. I tried sprinting in 7th and 8th grade but that wasn’t a good fit for me. I didn’t quit though, my plan worked out well. I made new fiends and none of them knew I couldn’t see the way they did so I kept running and eventually signed up for cross country freshman year of high school.