“Focus on the task at hand
and trust that the rest will follow.
Because, after all, if you keep looking
at how far away you are,
you will never get there.”
— alexander carlisle
I wake up at 2 a.m., unsure if I had spelled the name right in the top Palm Beach headline. It occurs to me that it would be a Bad Thing. I will never go back to sleep if I don’t check.
I hesitantly sign on in my little cave to call up the page, not anything could be done since the paper went to press seven hours ago. I open it, squint nervously, and then …
Of course, that means the computer is on, so I have to see how the Desert Solstice 24 hour run is going. I think it’s on the same track where I ran my first 24 hours, but not nearly as cold. The advantages of global warming, I suppose.
They go round and round in their little loops, lap after lap, mile after mile, hour after hour, the monotony broken every few hours by a change in directions. 18 hours down, 6 to go. I remember that feeling of immeasurability, if that’s a word, and it might be.
The effects of the chemo mambo showed up about halfway through my shift last night. I thought about that feeling at the 50-mile mark of a 24-hour run. It starts to get cold, your legs stiffen up, your belly goes bad. You’re just getting started, and you’re already screwed.
How does one swim 12 miles across the frigid water of Lake Tahoe? Focus on the task at hand and trust that the rest will follow.
The shore is still so far away. I feel like I’m sinking. But all you can do is swim. Or run. Or edit. Or watch a race at 2 a.m. while hoping your second wind is around the next turn. Banana popsicles are your friend. Gumbo is wise.
One lap at a time. One lap.