I had a dream the other night that my friend and I were running on just a normal route around the trails in the early hours of the morning when we heard a loud “BOOM” followed by some strange glowing lights in the distance. We stopped to freak out a little and of course take out our phones for proper documentation. As we were adjusting our headlamps to the erie scene, giant stretchy arms reached out and grabbed us pulling us through the air towards the giant metallic saucer that was hovering near the dark cliffs.
The heavily reinforced doors opened to a large space that was bright with beautiful lighting surrounding the circular setting. The grabby arms placed us gently at the edge of the opening. We were not harmed and there didn’t seem to be any alien life force waiting for us inside. Just this room. It was quiet and very still. So were we.
With hesitancy, we stood up, locked arms and tried not to freak out. Whatever brought us here did so with some sort of purpose and was taking great care in making sure that we learned something. As we started moving, the doors slammed shut and the main interior lighting that was once dimmed slowly began to get lighter like the sun coming up over a morning horizon. This was definitely not the “sunrise run” I had anticipated.
We started to creep around the circular room and immediately could tell that this was a locker room. Each locker space was fully geared out with the latest and greatest running products from various companies. The cubbies were very neat and organized and at the top of each space, there were solid nickel-plated nameplate things with dark lettering.
I began to recognize some of the names written in all caps. These women’s names were either elite or pro trail runners. Some of them current and some from years past. Under each name were three bullet points that listed the individual’s strengths. These weren’t just running strengths as much as they were life or personality strengths. I read things like: can handle complicated logistics, well-prepared, good listener, calm under pressure, likes to motivate others, loves the downhill, happy with or without company, etc. As I kept moving around the room looking at each locker space, the names seemed to stand out even more. These familiar names were trail runners from my town, and blended in with friends and strangers from other parts of the country and around the world.
I was blown away by the amount of lockers there were in this one funny looking, but fancy intergalactic dome. It went on and on and on. I read through each name and list of strengths, and I couldn’t’ help but think about how these women had more in common with each than not. Everyone brought something new and positive to the trail running community no matter their speed, experience or place in life. I kept thinking how I wished everyone could see how we all blended together as a huge community. That we each have something special to give or share. And, that maybe each of us should look for these positives in others and work on being more inclusive.
Then, I woke up. My six year old was tapping me on the face asking me to come “fix his messed up blankets”. Ugh! Funny how that happens right?
The other morning, we coincidently ran past the spot where the spaceship crashed in my dream. I couldn’t help but remember the silly, insightful story and recount it with my friend. Ours really is an amazing community made up of vibrant women who are out doing the same thing day in and day out which I feel so passionately about. It’s an amazing connection. The best thing about having this dream is that I no longer need a headlamp. My eyes just glow in the dark.
Keep at it, sistahs! I’m cheering for you!