I’m feeling physically and emotionally much better than my last running post, which was rife with drought worries, family worries, and even a few health worries. I had written in my first run post that I may someday face challenges as a runner with diabetes. However, running 6-10 miles a week (and hiking, walking on top of that) has actually helped quite a bit. I saw my doctor this morning, and she said I was doing everything right. My blood sugar has gone down tremendously in the last several months, almost back to normal, but also to the point that I sometimes have low blood sugar levels that make me confused and shaky. This is because of the medication I take. This disease runs in my family on my dad’s side, and he and several of his relatives were stricken with it. All but one was able to control it with diet and exercise. I just have to watch going too low.
The point of this personal info is that when the body, or planet, is diseased, it may not be too late to fix it. At some point, old age may take over. Or lack of care may progress the ruination. Or disease may become unfixable. But before then, there’s a lot of work to do. The best things we can do while alive on this planet is to be aware of how to take care of ourselves the best way we can–and then do it. It is with these positive thoughts that I started this blog to begin with. I appreciate the fact that though my body is not perfect–my pancreas is not great–I don’t have to succumb to the fear of this disease and curl up in the comfortable nest of donuts or mashed potatoes. Rather the opposite. Run!
Same with our planet: It is never too late to start taking care of it. While we cannot stop climate changes now, we can revise the way we live on this planet so that we do less damage in the future. If you follow our Google+ group or interviews, you’ll see more news about a fairly new genre called solarpunk. It’s not just a genre; it’s a way to envision the future as green, sustainable, off fossil fuels, and with renewable energy sources. It’s a beautiful aesthetic and a hopeful genre. I have become enamored by this term. It packs a punch. It’s still marginal and sometimes dissonant, which is how the punk suffice attaches itself to the radiance of solar.
I think solarpunk is where fear escapes and hope enters in. It’s where dystopian imagination gives way to a brighter future. It’s where you can look at your body or planet and say, “Well, I see there’s some work to do, now how to go about it?” Get outside, for one. Learn to be awed by the wilderness to the point that you crave to protect it. Run, for another. Take to the trails and watch the old cedars wave above a misty lake. Or swim! Our family went swimming at Sasamat Lake last week, and though that particular morning the air was quite cool, and we were cold, the act of cleansing our bodies of the heat, drought, and wildfire haze was refreshing and full of laughter. Same as with the planet. A lot of things aren’t right here. The planet has worse problems than a badly functioning pancreas. What can we do? Let’s figure it out.
This week I’m back to my running schedule after a hectic vacation. It feels good. It feels right. I think of everyday worries and concerns. I think of arrogant, hurtful people. Then I just leave those behind. I see the coast mountains to the north, can make out Mt. Baker to the south on a clear day, and revel in the old, mature climax trees indicative of our temperate rainforest. How fortunate, I think, it is to really be here. To beat it all, the next three days will be even cooler, with rain! I’m not sure if it will be enough rain to start helping the drought situation, but it is going to be perfectly good running weather.