To me, poetry and trail running go hand in hand. The woods connect me to this world, make me feel alive, and make me realize who I really am. Sure I am a Mom, a wife, a teacher….all of which can and do easily define me, and make me proud everyday. I’m talking about more than that, though. Who I am down to my very core. I am strong, introspective, and powerful. Running through the woods always reminds me of all of this and I am able to fulfill my roles as Mom, teacher, and wife when I have taken this time for myself.
My favorite poem by my favorite poet always comes to mind when I’m leaving the woods just before sundown. Especially the last stanza…
“The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I’ve got promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.”
As I ran through the freshly fallen leaves on the trails of Kings Gap tonight, I was reminded how much these woods are a part of me. I grew up playing in the woods as a kid, walked the trails with my friends for adventure throughout adolescence, and then moved to the mountains with my husband to start our family. A few years ago we lived in eastern North Carolina and I was deprived of my woodland solitude. Something was missing from my life when I had to drive over 45 minutes to truly feel at home. Thankfully the stars aligned and we moved back to our home state. We may not live in the mountains anymore, but the farmlands are just as beautiful and the trails I need and love are only a short drive away!
Apparently all of this makes me a nemophilist. New word I learned tonight! Yea, that’s me for sure. It was more popular over a hundred years ago, but I think it needs a comeback.
This Week So Far
Monday was a rest day and catch up on stuff around the house day.
Tuesday was our first group run at work that I am helping to organize with another teacher. We had 4 people show up to run or walk the cross country course. It was fun to get out and get moving with co-workers! I ended up with 3 miles. Then hit up the gym with Eli for a lifting, core, and strength workout.
Wednesday I was feeling like I was getting sick all day, so I took an unplanned rest day. Eli and I went to the Amish discount grocery store and scored this HUMONGOUS box of protein bars instead. At $5.00 you really can’t go wrong.
Then of course tonight I went for the soul cleansing trail run. Just a quick 3 miler, but it was so peaceful and rejuvenating. The woodsy smell, the sound of my footsteps, and the scenic overlooks of the mountains were just what I needed.
Are you a nemophilist too?
Do you have a favorite poem or poet?
What activity do you do to remind yourself of who you are?