When I close my eyes I can feel it. There’s a rock in my chest. It’s hard like cement. It’s heavy and it hurts me. I don’t want to feel anymore. I don’t want to hurt anymore. So I open my eyes wide and I bend my knees in anticipation. I take a deep breath in and I run. My legs move up and down quickly. I am running now. I am running fast like a gazelle. I am a gazelle moving quickly through the concrete  jungle that is New York City.

I don’t know what I’m running from and I don’t want to find out. The funny thing is…what I am running from is actually inside me. But I am so scared of what that might be. That heavy rock is trying to kill me. I just know it. It’s in my chest now, but it will spread. It will infuse my whole body with weight. It will eventually murder me.

So I run.

I don’t stop moving my legs up and down.

I’m sweating now.

I’m going.

I’ll get there.

As I run the rock begins to pulsate. It sends electric shocks down my arms. I am forced to stop in my tracks. I cannot run anymore. I close my eyes and bend my knees. I put my head between my legs and breathe heavily as sweat drips off my face onto the sidewalk.

I can’t run anymore. The pain is too intense. I fall to the ground and hold my hands over my chest. I feel how hard it is. The hardness is palpable. I have no choice but to be with this heavy rock. So I talk to it.

I tell it that I understand.

I comfort this rock.

This rock has been protecting me for so many years…or it has tried to.

It’s time to crack it open.

It’s time to look inside of this heavy gray rock and inspect the contents of my heart. I want to know what’s inside.

And I’m about it find out, because I stopped running.