Yes, It Is; No, I’m Not

Dearest Rachel –

I’ve known about this for the past two weeks, although I haven’t really bothered to actually watch it. But there it is; or more to the point, there I am. When Dinu saw me after the service Saturday evening, he had to ask whether that was really me or not, and I had to respond in the affirmative.

And while he didn’t ask the follow-up question himself, I’ve already gotten a few people asking about whether I’m going to make another stab at this, and actually try to run this time around. I think you can tell what my answer is from the title.

Erin (who was aware of this for the past week or so), at least, has been jocular about it, claiming that now that I was on video, I should be expected to run. My retort was that I’d proved that I didn’t need to run to get on video.

Honestly, I think that I’ve made my attempt, much like a child being required to eat some allegedly noxious vegetable. I’ve tried it, proven I don’t like it (or rather, that I can’t handle it), so I shouldn’t be required to choke it down another time.

Of course, that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t support others who choose to run, both monetarily and otherwise. On the contrary, I fully intend to keep that up. Even the Ragnar run was enjoyable, and there’s no question about the fact that I need the company. If I can be useful to them in their own efforts, I shouldn’t withhold what I can offer from them.

I’m just not likely to take an active participatory role this time around.

At least, since I’m hiding out in the A/V booth this week, I can hide from any compulsion I might feel toward attending the World Vision sales pitch, as well as avoiding most of these awkward interrogations about my being in their promo video. On the other hand, it does mean that I’m at all three of this week’s services, potentially exposing me to questioning from people from each of them. And there’s always the wondering about what to do during the passing period between services.

Much as I’d rather simply hide out, I feel like I need to actually interact with people in the lobby during the down time, only I don’t know how. You were always able to go up to someone and strike up a conversation; I remember that so well about you that it actually seems strange to see you writing about your fears with regard to talking to people. Then again, when you were talking to them at church, what was there to fear? They were already there and looking for answers. So maybe that’s the difference – that, and so many years of maturity in between.

Meanwhile, I’m kind of… what’s the right word? Ashamed? Embarrassed? by my motives for wanting to strike up a conversation. As much as I want to find someone who shares my belief system, and church is the best place for that, it seems utterly inappropriate to have such an agenda when I’m there. At least, it’s all pretty much a non-issue thus far – by the time I stop wrestling with myself about whether or not to approach someone, she’s already gotten up and left, so the matter is settled without me having to do anything.


I seem to have wandered from my original topic, honey. Long story short, I’m not running. Even the ‘family’ that the running groups develop into isn’t really for me, as this is a deep and abiding interest for those who do it, and that would never be me, even if I turned out to be good at it, like Erin (which I’ve clearly demonstrated I’m not). I will be there to support them, but that’s it – and that leaves me lost as to what my next move should be.

I really wish I didn’t feel like I had to do this. I wish you were still here. I know how selfish that is – how dare I ask you leave heaven behind to keep me company? – but the heart wants what it wants, and I don’t know how to fill the void you left. I just know this isn’t the way. But at least I tried.

For now, honey, just wish me luck. I’m going to need it.

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I am Rachel's husband. Was. I'm still trying to deal with it. I probably always will be.

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