I once met a man who’d been a wide-receiver.
We’d gone through a new acquisition. Marketing asked me if I wanted a job. He was the Director of Marketing, and my new boss.
Our business was coronary and peripheral catheters. I was just learning the business. He took me to hospitals. We’d watch procedures. He’d explain things and introduce me to people.
We spent a lot of time on the road, and learned things about each other. He’d been a wide-receiver in high school and college. Small, he’d been fast, quick, intelligent, and disciplined. Good route runner. But as he progressed, he encountered competition from other wide-receivers. They were faster, bigger, and stronger, and just as intelligent and disciplined.
Eventually, he left that field, but he loved football, so he became a high school football coach. Through it all, from the first spark of desire, running was what kept him going. He ran five miles every day. One night, while sharing a bottle of wine with our dinner, he confided, “I run every day, because I’m afraid to stop. I’m afraid that if I stop, I won’t ever run again.”
I think of Jon tonight because I thought, I need a break from writing. Like Jon, I’m afraid, that if I take a break, the seed that defines the essence of who I believe I am will dry up and crumble.