This was pretty much the worst month ever.
There have been family crises, brain surgery, ghosts (not the “booo” chain-rattling kinds, but the other kind, the kind where the corpse of the person you were is disturbed, and does battle with the person you are.)
I went for a run in the woods and almost got lost.
Have you ever been “almost in trouble?” It’s one of those things where you’re not paying attention and you start making a chain of minor errors that begin to snowball and interract. Suddenly God, or the subconscious taps you on the shoulder and points out that you are just one mistake away from serious and irredemable shit, and you had better start wising up and being careful as you have a lot of stupidity to undo to get out of this. You get scared, you get serious.
There you are at 7am by yourself in the woods. You have been running for an hour and a half in the same direction, just thinking about shit, and you’re ready to stop, and your knee hurts and you are tired and as you stop to get your bearings you realize that it is very cold and you are not wearing much and you are soaked with sweat and only the heat of your motion has kept you warm thus far, and you know you are going to have to go back every step you came but you’re not sure when you left the path or where the path ended.
You turn around, and you start running, but nothing looks the same. Maybe you’ve seen it before, but you saw it while running in one direction and it doesn’t look the same coming back. You’re thirsty, cold, tired. Your knee hurts and maybe you stop giving a shit, because it’s all too surreal… and you’re sure you never ran down this hill and why are you running up it?
Nobody knows where you are and nobody’s going to miss you for a long long time, too long to matter, and the panic becomes an ache of fear, and then resolve, and when that fades, acceptance and suddenly you’re ok with it and want to stay in the woods. To find your way out is to leave the moment . The words of Robert Frost keep running through your head.
“Your woods are lovely dark and deep,
but I have promises to keep,
and miles to go before I sleep,
and miles to go before I sleep”
Again and again.
You would be fooling yourself to think anybody ever had any choice, least of all, yourself, so sorry.