I have never felt so unwell every time I stepped my feet on a hard surface like the pavement. That kind of feeling when you want to be angry because you’re in sever pain, but that means you are hurting people without any reasons, and it just so unfair. And when I get pissed of because of simple things,I kept telling myself: “don’t let anything or anyone ruin your mood. Be calm. Stay calm.”, over and over again. I close my eyes and take a deep breath to release those negative energies that feeding me.
April 2016. That was my longest run, 31k, preparing myself for my first Full Marathon race in Singapore. I recalled myself had always being so strong in running, never feel tired or feel any pain after my long run. Even after I did a long run, I still managed to run for another mid- distance run a day after. That day, I woke up at 3.30am to run at 4.00am so I will still be able to catch the second Sunday service at 10.00am. I ran for about 4 hours straight, strong and happy. Went to the service, but turned out I skipped the service as I met my friends and they asked me to hang out with them. So I planned to attend the third service at 12.45pm in which I was also miss to attend because another friends joined our day to hang out and walk around Kota Kasablanka Mall. So last plan was to attend the fourth service at Pullman Hotel at 3.30pm. I definitely won’t miss that because some of the group had not been to attend any services as well. We walked around the mall for few hours, got bored, and moved to Grand Indonesia while waiting for the fourth service to start, and walked around the mall again, just did some window shopping like how girls would do when they gather.
Attended the service, and for the next 30 minutes I stood while the church was doing the praise and worship moment, that came, the severe pain on my left foot. After the service, I still went for another window shopping and hang-out with my friends, and the pain getting worse. I walked with limp on my left foot. I never doubt my instinct, that evening, my instinct told me that I was injured. I denied on what happened to my feet for two days, but the pain won’t went away. I drank painkillers (anti-inflammation), but I got overdose (found out that I am allergic to anti-inflammation medication), and ended up in hospital, flushing out the anti-inflammation medications toxin from my system.
Long story short, I finished my Sundown Singapore Marathon, suffering from incredible drowsiness as the event started from midnight to sunrise and pain from my injured foot. Three days before I left, I went to the doctor and he injected me with corticosteroids medication to make it fastly healed. It worked just fine, but I still feel the pain. Thank God the pain did not do worse after I ran 42k, I managed to walked around Singapore until the day ended after taking three hours rest. And I still can do 5k morning jog + 5k morning walk back to the hotel on the day after.
I learned two things from my injury: cooling down muscles by stretching and rest. After my 31k run, I was so in rush to go to Church and did not do any stretching AT ALL and I walked / stood for the whole day straight. I am just an ordinary human who can fall and gonna need quite some time to recover from the exhaustiveness. Regrets came after, because it did not stop until then.
Planned my training for my second Full Marathon in Bali in August, I kept running short to mid-distance. And one day, the injury came a much worse when I did my long run, where it hit both of my feet. The pain kept came and go. I was so stubborn. The road is my only place, running my only time for me to relieve all the angers, disappointments, seek answers, throwing negative energies. I was so afraid to face myself because I could not take those negative energies off of myself by running many hours. I kept running and ignored my pain. Stubborn.
Those four to five weeks of not running in early July because I was recovering from Typhus (as well as the injury) were my darkest weeks because I am facing my problems without cannot relieving it. And was not able to tell anybody about anything because of the trust issue I have, afraid that someone might judge or telling others about it.
I finished Bali Marathon just okay, but somehow God granted me the ability to run without pain at all. I prayed all night long the day before the event started, God is too good and He gave me the chance to finish the race. Went for few days extension in Bali and Gili Trawangan, the pain I felt came just a little. Still forcing myself to run day after day, sometimes the pain was there, and sometimes the pain was gone. Went for a regular therapy, but these feet are still active, used to run over and over again three times a week. I saw my calendar and there are a lot of run races I had signed up until November, and I just couldn’t not train.
Yesterday was my last run race for the next two months in Compressport Heritage Run. And today I was in severe pain cause by my injury. The injury had brought past injury when I was still as a part of Basketball Team in High School. The one that made me so down because doctor told me to stop playing Basketball for the rest of my life. I buried all my Basketball collections, because I was too broken to remember my love of the game.
When I was hanging my Compressport finisher medal, I cried. Texted Ma and told her that I was so sad because I couldn’t relieve things I should relieve through running. I committed myself to get a full rest and focus on recovery, because I barely could walk the whole day yesterday (I could not even go for a Sunday service after resting). She said to get rest first (by means, sleeping). Well she knew that if I am too sad, the only thing to get (a bit) better is by sleeping. I woke up two hours later and we talked. She reminded me that it was only temporary, it doesn’t mean forever. I knew. I knew it is only temporary. But there are so much thing that worry me and I thought that running could make it so much better. The physical strength I gain through running also giving me emotional strength.
People told me that I can still cycling and swimming long distance. But the feeling of running would be much different from the feeling after cycling and swimming. When I cycle, I need to focus on the road, be aware of the traffic. When I swim, I focus on “singing” with the rhythm created when my hands hitting the water. But when I run, I think. And that thoughts have given me so much things and ideas of why I do what I do.
I’m gonna miss the sunrise I welcome when I go for a morning run, the dew I break through when I breath, the heat I feel from the boiling blood-flow, and how I sweat a lot :p (sweating was a rare thing before I started run).
“Hardships often prepare ordinary people for an extraordinary destiny” – C.S. Lewis – found this beautiful line when I was reading an article online. I recalled my memories when I watched or read an article about injured professional athletes. They were taking days, weeks, months, or even years off to focus on recovery. And when they came back, they came back stronger, healthier, and with better performances. Even the greatest athletes had once experiencing the bitterness when they could not do what they do for a living.
I am not alone.
You are not alone.
Everybody feel the pain at some point.
Take a pause.
Take a rest.
Look for God’s purpose in your life.
Don’t be influenced by other people’s expectations in life.
God had sent me a message last night when I was alone in my room, difficult to walk, and questioning God why this happens because this injury is so painful and it is very easy to me to get upset and sad because .. it is just tooooooooo painful: “you are creative. Get creative in your life, because I had given you many abilities to be unique. Start something else that will make you become better”.
Ah.. I remember that JPCC’s theme this month is “creativity” 🙂