While packing my suitcase this morning I watched a video on why runners run. Most of the reasons were the same as mine: a love of the outdoors, the solitude, the challenge, a way to calm the mind, experience life, get away and see new places, keep fit, and feel good, etc. It didn't hit me until later what my real reason was.
To explain that, however I need to go back in time.
My dream as a young woman was to write music for film and television...I went to school for it, I interned for it, I moved to California for it, and after a couple of years achieved that goal despite all the odds against such a challenging profession.
I did it for 10 years. It was hard work, the hardest work I've ever done. But I loved it, even when I'd have to stay up three days straight to meet a film or production deadline. There was never an option for not finishing...even if it was an hour's worth of music that had to be written in a ridiculous time span. I worked on a lot of cartoons and direct to video films, game shows, and even theme park music. I worked with some of the most talented studio musicians on the planet and even conducted an A-list Hollywood orchestra. I was good at what I did.
But I lived with someone who didn't believe in me, and who over time shattered my own self-confidence. It's weird how we see the early warning signs, but don't listen to ourselves until the damage has been done...like drinking a poison. Consciously. That was a big lesson. And I'm the only one to blame for not having listened to myself much earlier on. So when I left that life, I left everything including the music. I needed a new beginning.
And for some reason, today I wanted to play my new keyboard during the 20 or so minutes I had before driving to the airport. It was a rough go....My fingers fumbled around and the playing generally sucked because it's been so long. But as I was playing I realized that running had become my new creative outlet. Running and adventure. I thirst for it. I need it. Right now I live for it. And can't seem to get enough of it. Perhaps I'm obsessed. Music had been for so many years... More than half my life. And it just isn't anymore--at least not in the same way. Now I use the energy from other peoples music to feed my running. It's kind of a reverse flow.
It's been eight years since I stopped writing music and interestingly enough that's when I got back into running again. Now I know why.