I went for a run tonight, in the cold and rain. That is so unlike me. I can't begin to point out the differences with the girl who went running tonight, and the girl who would have been snugged up in her winter woolies, baking comfort food on a night like this. Mind you, that girl is still around, and after a quick shower after tonight's run, I'm back in my winter woolies and looking through the pantry to see what I have to bake with! We're one in the same, and this "running all weather" girl must have always been in there... just silenced with laziness and comfort.
Now, back in my young and stupid days, when I saw someone like myself tonight - out running, in the rain, at night - I would have thought something along the lines of, "Oh, pa-lease! Go home you idiot!" Now, older and slightly wiser, when I see someone out running (or any exercise for that matter), I say something like, "You go girl/dude!" And give them a silent high-five as I drive past. I admire their effort. They're out there doing something about their weight/fitness/health issue. The redder their face and less 'exercise-like' they look, the more awesome I think they are!
But I got thinking tonight - how many people are out there because of a personal demon of some sort? Perhaps, though it's cold and raining and dark, they're out running to stop themselves drinking alcohol? Or gambling? Or hitting their child? Or to redirect some anger at someone in their household, so they don't explode and can handle the situation better? Or maybe they're just like me - a busy working mum with only a small window at night, a few nights a week, when husband comes home, to shoof off out the door and to hell with the weather! Perhaps they just want to lose weight, get fit and meet their personal deadline, too?
And it applies to so many other things too - the cranky person at work (you never know what's happening for them at home, or what they have to go home to); the way someone is dressed at the shops (perhaps those are the only clothes they own, or they're dressed in really short shorts because they woke up that morning feeling fantastic about their legs and butt! How many other girls feel that way when they get dressed in the morning?! Most of us (me included) spend a great deal of time trying to cover it all up and play tricks to redirect the eye with chunky accessories!).
We're all out there, doing our own thing, with our baggage and issues. We can never run away from them - we just all pack them differently to suit our location, destination and how many transfers we've made, and we usually get much better at carrying them, too. Even at night, in the rain and cold.