It started raining when I went running last week. An actual avalanche - a grey blanket enveloped the streets. The raindrops were catapults – the size of small bombs. I was four kilometres in, jogging on a cloud, fuelled by motivation to run a full ten.
The clouds had their own plans though.
Instead my shoes sank into puddles and soon, with damp socks and a soaked-through shirt, my eyes blurred. I had little idea where I was or where I was going. Where I should be or how I’d get there.
But I was – and, right then, that was all that mattered.
All too often we hide away at a mere drizzle, curse ourselves for forgetting an umbrella, for wearing open-toed leather shoes that refuse to be moistened. We pray for the wind to stop whistling, for the air to stop tingling, for the sky to stop being so damn blue. We wait all summer for winter and all winter for summer. It’s mid-July and God forbid the sun burns too bright – it’ll be a race to the nearest air conditioned space, inhaling and exhaling, a superficial smile plastered onto our face.
Because that’s what living is, right?
It doesn’t have to be.
Try it sometime. Go outside when the sky roars, when it feels as if this earth is on the verge of crashing down around you. Delve into the destruction, rummage amongst the shatters – you never know what you’ll find. Let the drops dampen your cheeks, lick away your inhibitions. Sing with the melody of the thunder, dance to the rhythm of the lightning. Let your eyes wander, peek at the sun even though you were always told not to - everyone’s done it. Run until your legs lose all feeling, let the sweat drip down your nose in summer, allow the frost to nibble at it in winter. Either way it’ll turn red. Red for passion, red for excitement. Red for the blood that erupts through your veins. Red for unconditional love for this. For all of this.
Red for alive.