I’ve been running a little. It’s not something I can do all the time, because The Kid doesn’t always want to go for a run, on gravel, in her stroller, even with the promise of blackberries at the end of it. (I’m not complaining; when you choose to have a kid by yourself, it’s tacky to bitch about not taking a run. Especially if you weren’t running consistently before the kid. Ahem.)

I’ve been running.

Do you run? I fucking love running. When I lived somewhere I felt safe running–in high school–I ran every night. Loved it. Felt like I was fucking flying. Did it a bit in college, but there were barking dogs and I didn’t like being in my skin and I couldn’t escape the school far enough to make it work in my head as an escape. (Oddly, I used to walk for hours. Hours and hours, nighttime walks through neighborhoods and industrial parks and orange groves. No idea why running didn’t suit.)

Here’s the rub, though, and it’s a big one: about two hours after I run, my mood hits the fucking floor. And a few hours after that? Forget about it, man. I’m a monster. It goes something like this:

Kid: Play with me!

Me: I can hardly move.

Kid: Play pirates outside! I have a map! Find treasure with me!

Me: I need to lie down. Can we find treasure in the bed?



The whole thing deteriorates from there. You can intuit how this might occur if you, or someone you know, is a tantrum-thrower. (Um. I’m sure I mean the toddler there. Yeah. Because I’m a grown-up. A fuckin’ adult.)

Okay, full confession: I’m a gold-standard tantrum-thrower. Or, at least, I was as a kid. I’m the yard stick by which all other family tantrums are measured. “But do you remember Kris–” “Oh, don’t get me started, it wasn’t anywhere near that bad.”

So I guess my real issue is how to take a damn run without depression clocking me on the side of the head for the rest of the day. (Or, excuse me, a runwalk, as my marathon-running sister says.) It’s two miles, man. We aren’t talking massive amounts of strain. And gravel’s not great for strollers, but it’s rockin’ for my joints. But boy oh fucking boy, that mood drop? Yeah. That’s not workable, with a tiny dependent human.

Is this like an acid trip, only my fat cells stored despair and lethargy instead of a bad trip? Because fuck me, y’all. Where is the damn runner’s high I’ve heard so much about? I like running because it feels like flying, but the end of the run feels a hell of a lot like crashing.

Thoughts? Does this shit happen to anyone else? Is it food-related? C’mon, brain trust. I need a medical consult, stat.