I keep waiting to write my running comeback post. It’d go something like this:

I ran! 3 miles pain free! Only that hasn’t happened. So I’m not writing my comeback post. Yet.

running track

While I can hardly believe it’s December for many reasons, what strikes me the most is that it’s been six months since I’ve ran any distance worth writing about. This used to be a blog about running in spite of a chronic pain disorder. That was it’s entire purpose. Now it’s a blog about food and random other things to fill the space while I sit here and wait for my knee to handle running again.

You can only be so patient while reading or hearing about others’ great running adventures. I can only write so many posts about not being able to run. I mark the time by crossing out squares in the calendar, each penciled in with a race I was hoping to be ready for… I don’t write them down anymore.

calendar

Things started looking up last month after I found a new doctor– one that wasn’t so eager to cut into my knee. He said of course I’d be running again; surgery was crazy. Like a good little patient, I diligently visited him bright and early twice a week for a month, each time full of hope and excitement.

He knows what he’s talking about- he answers my 5,000 daily questions and my “what ifs” and “whys” without hesitating. He points out the parts that aren’t working on a giant drawing of the human muscular system. Every morning he asks expectantly, “How’s the running?”

I answer “Great!”, because at this point, a slow mile on the treadmill is victorious. But I think he’s on to me… I should be running farther, and it’s not happening yet.

But now the question is, can my knee not handle running more than 2 miles, or can my brain not handle it?

north face race relay

I know, without a doubt, had I stopped running that race when I first felt that tug of pain in my knee, I wouldn’t be here writing about not running. I’d be training for Disney like I’d planned, the last race I have yet to cross out on my calendar.

Now when I run and I feel that familiar shot of pain on the outside of my leg, I become absolutely terrified. Almost literally paralyzed with fear. If I keep running, am I dooming myself to another 6 months on the sidelines?

I’ve been down this road before. I’ve put on my game face, and powered through. But 6 months on, 6 months off isn’t really the game plan I had in mind.

 

So now it’s back to the doctor, yet again, to figure out whether it’s my knee… or whether it’s my head.