Hailey has been begging me to let her go running with me. I've been putting her off. Partly because I wasn't sure how good it was for a six year old to take up running, and partly because she thinks I'm good at it. I'm not out to shatter anyone's illusions.
Tonight I told her to put her shoes on and come with me. She was giddy with excitement. That's one thing I've never been about running. Excited. Those two words will never grace the same sentence in my world. It started the minute the door closed behind us . . .
"How far are we going to run Mama? I want to run really far, like a lot of miles. Look at how I'm holding my arms, because I just like to hold them like a robot sometimes. Did you see that leaf on the ground? I'm going to pick it up on the way back and take it to Daddy. I'm ready to walk for a little bit now. How far are we going to run? Let's leap, Mama. Leap over the cracks. What, you don't like to leap? I'll do it then, you just run, do what you do. Did you hear that little sound? I think it's a little cat. I wonder where it is. I just like to skip sometimes, but I think I'll walk for a few minutes. Have we gone four miles yet? Because I think we should run four miles. Wouldn't Daddy be surprised if we told him we runned four miles? Why did you run into me? What, I can't use up the whole sidewalk? I just wanted to try running on your side. Did you see that squirrel? Did you see him when he was on top of that tree? I think you missed him. There's an orange tree. I planted cherry trees at school today. I took the seeds from the cherries in my lunch and planted them on the playground. I think tomorrow there should be three cherry trees at school. Do you want me to bring you home some cherries? I'll probably just eat them. Why do you wear a watch? Can you tell me what time it is? Have we runned a whole mile yet? I think I'm ready to walk for a minute. Ok, I'm done, let's run again. You're good at this Mama. I think I'll say hi to this lady up here. I think I'll tell her I like her dog. I say that to people sometimes, even if I don't think their dog is cute. It makes them feel nice. Why do you bend your arms when you run? I just really needed some exercise. My legs hurt. No, I don't want to stop. I want to run a long ways. I'm going to sleep good tonight. I think I'll need to eat dinner again when I get home. All this running has made me hungry all over again. Take a shower when we get home? I like a bath. I know Jackson takes showers, but he's a boy and I'm a girl, and boys and girls are just different, Mama. But they can still like each other. What is hail? I was hoping I would get hail for our project, because it's almost all of my name. I didn't get it though, I got clouds. But who decided on the name hail? Can I just walk the rest of the way home?"
And that's just the parts I can remember! I can't wait to go running again with her!