Writing Prompt: Running

Nov 14, 2018

I left my ring in the airport bathroom and was on the plane before I noticed. I’d just given the flight attendants my usual assurance that if they had an empty seat to fill in First Class, I was more than willing to help them out by changing seats. This always makes them laugh, but it never actually works. The line in front of me was stalled, so I had to then stand there next to them, waiting to move, which wasn’t happening. It was awkward.

When I looked at my finger and gasped, the flight attendant noticed. “Oh my god,” I said. “My ring.” She told me to run and look for it; she said I had time. She pulled my carry on back into their work station and said they’d watch it. I think she was relieved to be rid of me.

It was three restrooms back, not the closest, and one of the moving walkways was out of order going in that direction. I was wearing the fuzzy sweater I’d worn almost every day of the trip because it was the warmest thing I’d brought, and it was already tending toward the oily side. I ran, past the wine bar I hadn’t gone into on my way to my gate, past the Hudson news where I’d bought tampons about 12 minutes earlier, accepting a knowing eyebrow-arch from the woman who rang me up.

“It only came because I’m traveling,” I said to her.

“Mmmm hm!” she said back. “You’re not the only one, there’s been a lot of these today.” I laughed; she didn’t.

I ran past the toddlers walking in large swerving lines with their little colorful pull-along suitcases, nearly knocking into one as he started a new direction in his swerve.

When I got to the bathroom, I ran in, screeched to a halt at the sink where my ring sat by the faucet, right where I’d left it, grabbed it and ran back. On my way out I heard a woman say to another “I was wondering what that was doing there!”

As I ran back to the gate, horribly out of breath and sweating into my fuzzy sweater, so much, I whispered thankyouthankyouthankyou to all of the women who hadn’t taken my ring. Then I thought, People are so good




  1. jacqueline

    November 16th, 2018 at 9:47 am

    Prompt: Running
    My first thought when I think of running is peeing my pants and prolapsed vaginas. My second is the importance of exercise and how I’ve always wanted to be a “runner”, but genetically I was bound for walking…. I’ve got big boobs and a weak pelvic floor.
    My second thought when I think of running is the idea that I’ve run away from many things in my life and for the first time I’m running toward (some) of them. I ran away from my blood family and hometown- this was a good thing. I ran away from myself for many years….. avoided being alone, using drugs, alcohol to escape the discomfort of being a vulnerable human. I ran away from college Algebra 3 times. It wasn’t until I couldn’t run away anymore that I was able to build the skills to stop running and eventually chose not to run, but to witness, to grow, to cry, to experience the discomfort of vulnerability and find a way out that is more productive then avoidance. I have not and will not perfect this process, it’s not always pretty and it isn’t always what I want, but sitting in discomfort, even in the discomfort of fucking Algebra helped me be ok with being still. Running makes me pee anyway. Sometimes I try to run, but I always end up feeling like a peed myself.
    My third thought on running is how I fucking run around all the time. And to contradict my previous paragraph….. I can’t help but think I’m avoiding things be being so busy. I have a terrible time staying still. I am always planning something, doing errands, working……. I have taken up Yoga now and that is very healthy, but I even have to rush to yoga and rush out of yoga. I’ve always been like this….. multi tasking. There are pros and cons to multi-tasking. I get shit done (mostly), but often not done super well. I’m a proclaimed imperfectionist. This taske of writing is a perfect example. I’m Rushing (running) to write this prompt because I have to get back to work, but conveniently I don’t have time to correct my grammar, rethink my words or second guess myself. My life feels too busy at times, but also if I sit still I feel anxious. It’s a conundrum.
    My 4th thought is……………. Who the fuck will be running for President in 2020. Sweet Jesus I hope its not another white man.

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