OK, team. Auntie DJ is sorry she got all superpissed about…well, everything last week. I’ve gone to my corner, come back a new woman, blah blah…
The crazy has been coming back to a certain degree. Remember my tarot card post? That was riiiight when this whole injury started nagging away. A part of me has wondered if perhaps the tarot cards brought this on — that the unholy demon that has attached itself to my left patella and has been humping away at it for a month and a half was brought home from Barnes and Noble in that one fateful seafoam green box. So when I came home from school in my usual exhausted heap the other night, that little part of me reached for the cards and held them dramatically above the kitchen garbage can, ready to send them the way of coffee grounds and Red Bull cans I’ve slammajammed at 3 AM during paper-writing-fests.
But hey. Let’s all calm down for a second, because we know which “part of me” is talking here. It’s the part of me that went to Bible camp and came away convinced that Ouija boards (manufactured by Satan himself) (oops…no, I was mistaken…Parker Brothers) would condemn me to a life of damnation and sadness and that perfectly nice gay people would one day be dragged into the fiery pit to assume their places alongside murderers, single mothers, genociders, and Buddhists.
So I did not throw away the cards. I decided to take a deep Goddamn breath, close my eyes, count to ten, sing a few calming choruses of Avril Lavigne’s “Girlfriend,” and take stock of life.
The truth is that I’ve learned a few extremely valuable lessons in this time off from running. Yes, this is where the oboe starts playing and we all get didactic-ified. So sit down, sack up, and deal with it, pussy.
1) If I stop running, I will not cease to exist.
…not that I thought I would actually wink out of existence upon not doing my morning fartleks (but then, who knows? I had never tried it.). But it sort of was my “thing.” It was how people (people who don’t know me terribly well, mind you, but still) introduced me at parties. And somehow — though I am a smart, fantastically interesting person — I let it become my definition. Which is scary, because we’ve all met that guy who can ONLY TALK ABOUT WEIGHT-LIFTING, and eventually we just want to punch ourselves in the teeth just hearing him talk about Romanian dead-lifts and squat-thrusts and Muscle Man 9000 Creatine Powder. I fear that I was becoming VO2-max-and-shin-splints girl. Perhaps I was. And then it disappeared for <shudder, hands to mouth> SIX WHOLE WEEKS. And I only barely held on to my sanity. Which leads me to:
2) I need to take a freaking chill pill.
Yeah. Know who’s in friggin’ grad school? Me. Know who needs to graduate and find a job? Me. Know who let running, a running injury, and then freaking the shit out about a running injury get in the way of a crapload of schoolwork? This kid.
3) If I stop running, I will not become morbidly obese.
Militant feminist though I may be, the patriarchy’s obsession with having a kickin’ bod is still residing comfortably in my head. And to be perfectly, brutally honest, it took me two or three weeks of doing a crapload of elliptical and subsisting on dust and sparkling water to understand that I wouldn’t be muffin-top-ing all up in everyone’s face if I didn’t get to jog every morning. Sad? Perhaps. But we’ve learned our lesson. As I type this, in fact, I am currently chomping down a handful of nature’s most perfect food, Cadbury Mini-Eggs (Slogan: “Ruining your life deliciously — every spring since you were 5.”).
4) Yoga is really kind of fun.
And here I thought I’d hate it. But it allows me to be strong, flexible, and oh yeah make lots of fun observations about the yoga culture. For example:
5) Most men only go to yoga when dragged by their girlfriends.
OK. I hate gender-based generalizations. I really do. And I wish I could say differently, but this appears true in 99 cases out of 100. Trust me, ladies, next time you’re hoisting your thigh over your shoulder to the strains of Thievery Corporation, take a glance over at Kevin. He hates every second of this. He’s red and shaking not because of a good workout but because his scrotum is stretched so thin it’s transparent. Know what? Next week, when Heated Bikram 1-2 rolls around, let ol’ Kevin stay home and drink bourbon and scratch his hairy ass (How do I know it’s hairy? He was doing 20 gazillion downward dogs in front of me in those silly shorts you made him wear, OK, Brenda?) and sniff your undies for a few hours. You’ll both be happier.
6) Physical therapy works…eventually.
How do I know? Because…
HOLY FUCKING GOD I RAN EIGHT MILES TODAY WITH MINIMAL PAIN AND I FELT LIKE A REAL PERSON AGAIN! I mean, OK, yes, I could be a person without running, but I was also a person who was forgetting what Georgetown or the Mall looked like or what it feels like to blow past some 50-year-old buzz-cut tool who refuses to let a girl of all things pass him.
And then? You guys? I came home? And walked down some stairs? And felt almost NO CLICKING! How did this happen? WHO CARES, BITCHEZ? TOUCH MY KNEE AND BELIEVE, YE WHO DOUBT ME!
Interestingly, a very good friend and fellow marathoner, who I will call The Mountie, has been nursing runner’s knee for I think even a little longer than me, and she also started magically getting better this week. It’s, like, a CONNECTION, man. Like we just KNOW in our bones that it’s HEALING TIME, right? Far out, yo…
Anyway. I salute you, Mountie. We are kicking this. Tasty-style. I’d invite Mountie to do a victory dance with me, but she’d put me to shame. So I’ll just sit here in the corner and sing a triumphant rendition of the Indiana Jones theme song while she busts a move. Are you all watching? Goddamn right you are. This is what VICTORY looks and sounds like in the Republic of DJ — off-key and hilarious, yet strangely sexual.
Yes, I’m aroused, too. It’s OK. Embrace it.