In my dreams, I can run

Best Foot Forward

I dream of being a runner.

Not just in a figurative sense, mind you. I mean that I regularly dream of running.

It’s not just that I can run in my dreams, either – it’s how I run. Quickly. Effortlessly. As though I each one of my paces sends me a tremendous distance, floating a tiny bit above the air. (My real running is nothing like this, of course. It is lumbering and breathless and, frankly, demoralizing.)

I continue to daydream of running, although my progress toward this goal is hampered by the following conundrum:

  •  I am afraid of running. Afraid that I will lose my balance and fall, that I won’t be able to go more than about 30 yards, that my left foot will scream every time it hits the ground.
  • This is not pure conjecture; in the past couple of years, I have experienced all of these things when I have tried to run.
  •  Therefore, I rarely attempt to run.
  •  And, thus, I shall never become a proficient runner.

It’s silly, I suppose, to believe that it is a hopeless case. I mean, I lose my balance while standing still, I’ve fallen over while taking a simple walk, and my foot bugs the heck out of me on a regular basis. . . and yet I still get out there and walk around every single day. Why not let the same things happen while trying to go a little faster?

I’m cognitively aware that even tiny amounts of effort will lead to incremental success in building my skill, yet I still choose not to act. Perhaps it’s silly that I cling to this dream so tenaciously while putting so little effort into achieving it.

I’m sure that most of us have dreams we are not brave enough to strive for, things that we achieve only in our deepest sleep. Running is mine; what’s yours?

Best Foot Forward” by Maureen Barlin / BY CC