I went on a walk today. It was actually sort of a jog-walk, as I'm allowed to slowly start building up to the arm motions required in real jogging or running. And on my walk:
I nearly got hit by a State Police Officer, who was speeding and drinking coffee while trying to maneuver the hills and turns of my road.
I discovered the longest snakeskin I have ever seen in my life. Now, I live in Maine so I suppose in the grand scheme of snake-y things, that isn't saying much. But I'm terrified of snakes, and lemmetellyou, I hightailed it out of there. Jog interlude! No more walking!
I did my best to be fully conscious of my body - the way my modern teacher back at school would want me to be. I tried to imagine Nailah's voice in my head, telling me to just "feel my body," and be "present" and listen to "every muscle," and as I took inventory I tried to hold my stomach the way a dancer should, with my abs pulled tight like a corset (another dance metaphor, this one from my ballet teacher). I focused on not rolling in onto my big toes, and letting my weight settle evenly on my feet. Instead of ignoring the persistent pain in my right leg, I let myself feel and acknowledge it - an old injury that has turned to scar tissue. I'm doing my best to do now what I should've done when it happened - ice and stretching and caring for it. But in that moment, I tried to just feel it, let the warm pain (can pain be warm? My pain was warm and almost pulsating. Maybe I'm a weirdo.) envelope me and be acknowledge. It is mine. The moment was mine. Own it. The burning leg, the slow increase of my pulse, the tightening of my core, the pace of my breathing. "Feel your whole body, dancer."
I saw two dead frogs. I stepped on neither, to my relief.
I was reminded how breathtakingly beautiful New England can be on a gray summer morning.
It rained lightly. It was heavenly.
I realized how hard I'm going to have to work to be at a level of athleticism I like to be. It has been a rough summer.
My mother and sister drove by me in the opposite direction.
I collected two soda bottles to recycle and a half-full pack of cigarettes for the trash.
I carried a butterfly on my hand for the last mile and a half. It had been semi-pinned under one of the soda bottles. This disgusts me.
I can't wait to walk again tomorrow.