Animal House

No real change today beyond my body arguing bitterly about the strain I have put it under. I’m on week three of a mileage increase to put my weekly running in the 23-29 mile range. That for me is a lot. Though in the sport of running it is not. I have run solely off feel for the past three weeks. I have run as far as my body felt it could go that day, or as short as it needed- though none have been under 4 miles. 5-6 has become my comfort zone. My longer runs, usually two a week (rather than one long weekend run) have been in the 10 mile range. I have run to stay grounded. I know I need it. It drives me out the door. It gets my sneakers on when every ounce of me wants nothing to do with running. I am strong enough fitness wise to be able to force it even when I don’t want to. My legs just go along. I let my mind wander. It usually flits from thought to thought, no one ever staying all that long. Some deep, some not. Mainly it is just the act of running that I need. It can be hard, as today’s run was. The kind of run you think you’ll fall over if you stop your forward momentum. The past two have been like this, though today really was one of the worst I have ever had. I wanted 6. That is what I set out for, but knew in the first 1/2 mile that today was not a good day. I should not have run at all. My body is aching. I can’t barely list my arms over my head but like a stubborn mule I pulled on my tights and headed out into the cold. I HAD TO run. And run I did. I pushed myself. It was a mistake. I knew it the whole way yet I’m too damn stubborn to concede a loss. I ran every hill and refused to back down. I felt for sure my staggering pace was slow, but my GPS told me I was running at my normal easy run pace. Each foot step felt jarring and I returned more sore than I left. It was not my brightest moment. Though what was my alternative? To sit in this house and stare at the walls. To not run and beat myself up over it like I did yesterday? My inner voice was merciless yesterday. It never let up. I wandered the house and watched the snow. I did not set foot outside till it was 10 PM and time to check the horses. I walked back and forth in the house. From room to room. I could not find anywhere that gave me comfort. The time spent in the studio felt uncomfortable and forced. I let myself leave the work I was doing since it was not going anywhere productive. I looked at the paperwork stacked high on the desk, the dishes piled in the sink and the mound of garbage the dogs had dragged across the living room. I could not bring myself to do anything about it. It is registering there in my head. I just can’t find the desire to fix it.

The house is a disaster. and I mean a real mess at this point. Neighbors stopped in and I was so ashamed of it. It is not uncommon for the house to be a mess. Neither my partner nor I are much in the domestic department. I did not get my mother’s cleaning gene. I am no Martha Stewart. In my barn you could eat of the floor. In my house that move might bring the CDC calling. This day is no different. It registers and I feel blanketed in the mess. It is suffocating. but I do nothing to address it. The bird has demolished a lamp and shade. It sits a shambles in the TV room. The drapes all have holes from him pulling on them. There is bird shit all over. I see it. All of it. I just do nothing. When did my life become like this? When did I stop caring about anything? I like when it is clean and the counters are sparkling white. When no dishes clutter the sink. I am lazy I guess. Lazy and living in the filth of this life. The mess of the bird, dogs, cats. All of them. It is disgusting and repugnant yet I do nothing to change it. I can’t remember the last time I changed my bedding, or cleaned the bathroom. I just don’t know. I don’t know when our life became like this. It is horrifying in so many ways. but most of all I feel the shame of it. My skin crawls when people come in the house. I imagine their eyes taking in eyes inch of the filth. I can only wonder what they think of me. “who keeps a house like this?”. My mother stopped coming all together. I know she can’t stomach it. I can’t. I can only imagine how it makes her feel. This is someone who has been known to vacuum more than once a day. Her house is never out of order. It is pristine as if waiting for Home & Garden to arrive for a photo shoot. There is no clutter, no mess. Just shining surfaces, and order. It makes me feel sick to walk in her house. It makes me see how horrid our existence is. I guess I gave up along the way, unable to stem the tide of dirt and disorder. There have been times along the way that I just lose it. My partner will find me on my hands and knees scrubbing a floor thick with grime. This is usually alarming for us both. I will clean until my fingers ache and my back won’t straighten. It is a frenzied place of no stopping. It is irritable and angry flashing with anxiety. It is a place of being pushed one pile of shit too many. It is my breaking point. This house has exceeded that and I have nothing to give it. No frenzy to unleash. No fix and so I sit amidst the filth and just have to shudder. There is no way to look away. No avoiding it. I live like this. I guess I am a pig. A slovenly creature too lazy to make it any better. Sad to say even my pigs are cleaner than this. I don’t think I could hate myself more as I take in the state of this place.

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