Dreamers, Keep on Dreamin’

Most of you know that my brain surgery was six years ago. And some of you know that before my surgery, I ran about 10 miles a week.

I loved running. It was a chance to be outside and appreciate each season and its own unique beauty. It was a way to be fit. I felt accomplishment when I finished a 5K. And running cleared my head when I needed to turn off my brain for a little while.

So when I was recovering from my surgery and barely able to walk, the question of how soon I could return to running was always on my mind. It was a painful question, but not as painful as the look that would flash across the face of any physical therapist or doctor I put the question to. They would stumble through some non-committal answer, and I would realize that they didn’t want to hurt me with the truth, but didn’t want to lie to me either.

Finally, someone explained to me that my balance might not every be good enough to run again. Asking my body to successfully land on one foot–essential for running!–was asking too much. So, I pretended to drop the subject.

Then, I really did drop it. With work and kids and art, who has time to exercise, let alone run?

But last week I remembered Jill Bolte Taylor saying in her book that she didn’t feel she was completely healed until she could water ski again, 8 years after her stroke. Eight years and she never gave up! (There’s a link to her TED talk on my “More About Brain Injuries” page.)

So since I was out for a walk and no one was looking, I decided to try it. I would see if I could run. If I landed flat on my face, then I’d try again in another few months.

The amazing thing is, I could do it! Now, it’s not a regular run–it’s definitely a brain-surgery-patient run, but it’s more than I have been able to do for six years. My feet leave the ground; I come down on them one at a time. (Yay, me!) And it feels great. Yes, my knees are killing me, but who cares? I ran! Just a couple of yards at a time, but I did it a few times and didn’t fall. Amazing.

9 thoughts on “Dreamers, Keep on Dreamin’

  1. these two paintings you have posted are AMAZING!! I love them :)))
    I’m so glad for you and the fact you made the attempt to run, even just a little bit! congratulations!

    • Thanks so much! I haven’t had much art time with the classes I am taking; and then when I do I find I am compelled to draw these ladies dreaming in their loops. I have no idea why–feels a little like the guy in Close Encounters. 🙂

  2. Your paintings are amazing! I knew you would never give up in trying – and happy for you that you started to run again. Perhaps another 5k is in the future! Luv, Mom

  3. hi Laura… i found you via Francis Traina, and wanted to tell you that i LOVE your art and your story… i’ll be following you. BRAVO to you on the running. That’s gotta feel great. xoxo

    • Hello Pauline! I am so glad you found your way here! Thanks so much for the compliments and the follow. This week, the only running I’ve done is to play catch-up with school work, but I will post some new stuff soon! Thanks again! 🙂

  4. Laura, I posted the painting you gave me on my blog today:) I haven’t gotten to get a frame for the larger flower you sent but I’ll get that soon:) Thanks again I get so much enjoyment out of the art you sent!!

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