I cannot hear that word without thinking of little Forrest Gump speeding up the drive, his braces exploding off of his legs. How incredibly liberating.
Only in this case, not so much.
Forrest was running for freedom. He was running for himself. Hell, he plain and simple enjoyed running.
I run for children.
No, not the kind of running where my feet are moving rapidly down the pavement. My running is defined by the number of miles put on my car driving kids to soccer practices and karate classes and soccer games and karate belt tests and picking kids up from school on Fridays because it’s special. Ok, my honey takes care of that last one but it’s still running.
I drive for my job, from home to home to home to… well, you get the idea. I love it. I’m out of the office almost every day. I meet different people and I see an abundance of amazing children. No two days look the same.
Combine the two and the miles on my 3-year-old vehicle are creeping higher and higher by the moment. And, there is an all too permanent but imprint in the driver’s seat of my vehicle. So much so that I’m beginning to question the resale value of said vehicle without the replacement of the front seat.
Why do I do it?
As I sat in the freezing rain and sleet for 1-1/2 hours on Saturday morning I was asking myself that question over and over again.
But my answer comes in the smiles and the utter pride in the accomplishments of my two littles. When they score a goal or make a save or have an assist or earn a belt or simply enjoy themselves.
This is what I signed on for when I agreed to this parenting gig. I want the soccer mom sticker in my back window. I want children who feel accomplished at something. Anything. Currently I run to soccer and karate. I am not opposed to running to any variety of music lessons or drama club or, or, or… I want them to know that I’m proud of them no matter what they do. I want them to know that there is more to life than the couch and the Wii.
So I run. Maybe for freedom after all.