That Moment and Pounding Hearts

Yesterday evening I discovered another immediate benefit to quitting smoking. Oh, I know, not like it’s rocket science that giving up the filthy habit will bring plentiful rewards, but even so it’s lovely when you notice them. The first happened within days: how taking a deep breath was so much easier and how clear my airways felt. And the second was, as I mentioned, yesterday: I ran a loop of 5k without having to stop and walk. Nor did my lungs hurt by the time I got home. I didn’t even have that metallic taste in my mouth. Says it all, really.

It’s happened before, that I’ve run both faster and further than I expected to, only to find that the next run my chin would scrape along the floor after half a mile, so this afternoon after taking Bertie the Labradoodle out for a long, brisk walk, I headed out for a run and not in any way did I expect to be able to chug around the same 5k loop again without keeling over. But I did! Yippieeeee! My lungs are feeling happy and I feel ecstatic that I’m doing something good for this tired, old body for a change, because over the 19-odd months B and I have been together I sure haven’t been. That’s not B’s fault – if anything, he’s been keeping up the gym, pump classes and running all along – and I can sure as hell give Axl Rose a run for his money all on my own, but there we are.

It felt so good, and finally I was in that moment I have missed so much and occasionally thought of inbetween pouring large glasses of wine and lighting another cigarette to go with them – the feeling of my heart pounding in my chest, my feet hitting the ground rhythmically thump-thump-thump, how good it feels to breathe hard, and best of all feeling strong and determined, knowing my body is feeling good and healthy and can go on for a good while yet. It’s glorious and I’m so happy now that I’m there again (or getting there, rather – let’s face it, I’m not running 10k just yet but just give me a few more weeks, OK?).

It’s been a busy day and the rest of the week is looking fairly crammed too. Over the past few weeks I’ve not written much as far as Alice goes, I’m still getting it all figured out in my mind following the editor’s feedback – as it stands, I just need to find that point to start from again. Not that I’m rewriting the whole thing, but slicing into it is harder than it seems and I’ve been stalling a little. Oh well, you can’t force these things, and I know I’m nearly at that stage again where it’ll all come spilling out again.


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