My life, just like yours I'm sure, can be quite chaotic at times. Right now is one of those times. Trying to keep hold of everything and prevent things from falling through the cracks is an exercise in futility. Something will slip, I know it. But what I also know is that the world will not end. I've pulled my head out of the sand concerning a family matter and I am adressing it head on, whether I want to or not. Pull up your big girl pants Jenny and get a move on!
While all of this chaos circles me, I am doing my best to keep a clear head. How? How in the world do you do it you wonder woman you? Well, I take my Zoloft, I run and I eat a lot. Yeah, that last part isn't so helpful, but whatevs, it is what it is. I seem to find my spiritual zen or something while running. I have to run to music, and often I get stuck on one song. One song that resonates with me, at least for awhile, and then I'm done with it.
Right now? That song is Florence and the Machine’s ‘Dog Days are Over’. No, it's not the newest diddy out there. (The kids, they don't say diddy anymore do they? That's a shame!) But it's the right beat, and it seems to be the song I tune into, while the others serve their purpose as background noise.
I've never been good at interpreting the meaning of things - be it poetry, or great pieces of literature, or in this case, song lyrics. I can only tell you what they mean to me. More importantly, I can tell you how that song makes me feel. Calm. Determined. Focused. Grateful. Worried. Intense. Appreciative. Happy. For this lapsed Catholic, that song while running? It's my church.
The dog days are over
The dog days are done
The horses are comin’
So you better run
I think about my dad's dog days - they are mainly behind him - and I thank God for for that. As Florence sings, I pray for my dad's continued strength and perseverance. He’s currently fighting signs of graft vs host disease, which is (once again), one of the fabulous ‘to be expected’ side effects. He's also receiving preventative chemo treatments in the hope it keeps the cancer in remission. But he's in it - fighting - as he says, "I've got this, bring it".
Run fast for your mother, fast for your father,
Run for your children, for your sisters and your brothers,
See? Run fast. Run faster. And I do, for that one song. And as I run faster, I feel as if I’m connected to those people and it's as if every step I take pushes the harder days behind us all. It feels like I have the power to do that, for just a moment. My running pushes the bad things away. I think of my family - parents, my stepmom, my kids, my sisters, my sister in laws, my brother in laws and of course my husband. (I know, there’s no mention of husbands in the lyrics, but you can’t leave a guy out!) I hope all of our dog days are behind us; we’ve all had some. I think of how strong everyone has been to get through their own dog days and I smile with pride and hope.
Leave all your love and your longing behind,
You can’t carry it with you if you want to survive.
If you want to be able to fight any future dog days, you’ve got to be able to put the past behind you. You cannot carry hate, or any shoulda coulda wouldas, or any misery over how bad things may have once been. You can't worry about what might come. You’ve just got to be ready to fight whatever comes at you. Get your head out of the sand Jennifer! Well, that's what it says to me anyway. So I keep running. Right now, it’s the only way I know to fight. It’s my therapy. My dog days keep coming in waves, but I’m not scared yet.