My Andy Dufresne Moment

26 Dec

I didn’t think someone from Shawshank Prison would help me turn the corner, but he did.

Andy Dufresne.

“… who crawled through a river of shit and came out clean on the other side …”

Usually a moment triggers a memory and the sadness of missing him becomes so strong that I need a couple of minutes to get myself together. But this time it was different. The emotion was so overwhelming that I stopped in the middle of the track and began to cry.

It came with no warning and I just missed him. Right there on the bridge, after the big hill. I hadn’t sobbed like that since the year he passed away. But it happened and there I was … I couldn’t get a hold of it.

The feeling lasted a while … all month long. Usually sadness hits during Thanksgiving because it’s the holiday I remember my Dad the most. But this episode cast a shadow on the entire month of November, even December. I couldn’t shake it.

Life felt heavier. Things were slipping. The bottom was coming up and I was trying to hang on by looking for gratitude in moments where it was hard to find.

Family life was stressful as people kept revealing who they really were in times of normalcy and crises. But I always knew who they were, I just kept giving them chances. I was all out. Rejections felt uglier, the it’s-not-you-it’s-me letters were no longer coming in, it was just silence, like they weren’t even going to be bothered with notices. I had been moved over to the don’t-even-bother pile, and I was feeling the strain in every capacity, which incidentally increased my stress levels and decreased my tolerance and patience. Parenthood was kicking my ass and the weight of it effecting me. The year was in the homestretch and I was running out of gas.

While a lot of people I knew were busy getting projects, or writing thousands of words for NaNoWriMo, I stopped. It been the longest writing dry spell in 10 years. There were things happening, life was happening. But I stood there thinking about a future that wasn’t here and wondering whether it would ever show up.

And then I had my Andy Dufresne moment and I found my way back …

I had continued going to the track throughout all this, it was my one constant, if anything I’d at least walk in my hidden forest within the city. But that morning for the first time in a while, I picked up the pace. The storm clouds were hanging over head, and I wanted to beat the rain.

It didn’t work. The light mist turned into drizzle, then fat heavy rain drops found their way through the giant pine trees.

The few people walking through the park ran to their cars. But I didn’t.

I kept going, sloshing through mud puddles in the making, keeping pace while my baseball cap dripped with rain and sweatshirt drenched. I ran about three miles, and when I sprinted to my imaginary finish line I looked up to the sky and let the raindrops hit my face. I closed my eyes took a deep breath.

I found my moment.

I used to loathe running when I was a younger, but it’s become necessary to help me move passed all the crap and come out clean on the other side.

Buen Camino, my friends …


9 Responses to “My Andy Dufresne Moment”

  1. beth December 26, 2019 at 2:14 PM #


    • The Guat December 27, 2019 at 9:30 PM #

      Thanks Beth 🙂 glad for the comeback

  2. Sorryless December 26, 2019 at 8:51 PM #


    I was thinking about you, and I am glad you had this Andy Dufresne moment. Because you are just as strong, and you need to believe that. I know there are times when you feel like the world has rolled on top of you . . I have these, more often than I admit. But it’s not allowing for the tread marks to keep you stuck there. It’s rising up and doing exactly what you did.

    Rock on sister. Rock on.

    Sunshine and waves and big hugs.

    • The Guat December 27, 2019 at 9:25 PM #

      Thanks for the positive vibes. Tread marks. That’s a really good image. I hadn’t thought of the tread marks. I’ll try and picture that next time. It’s been a rough patch and I’m super grateful to have dug my way out. It’s hard when you’re down in the dumps but Andy pulled me out. Your three wiseman story was super uplifting! Glad I caught that one. Thanks for checking in 🙂

      • Sorryless December 27, 2019 at 9:33 PM #


        You write the book on being a wonderful mom. Every day.

        That’s all I got, for now. 🙂

  3. susielindau December 27, 2019 at 11:49 AM #

    You are not alone. Rejection is tough, people can be insensitive buttheads, and there is no easy way to get over a painful loss. I have missed my barefoot grounding moments outside since it’s covered with snow. For me, getting busy, creative writing, and doing anything to keep my mind busy, helps. It’s all about putting one foot in front of the other. Soon I’m out of the storm and the sun shines once again. I’m glad you found the sun again!!! (((hugs)))

    • The Guat December 27, 2019 at 9:30 PM #

      Thanks Susie! I’m super glad I climbed my way out. It took a while as things kept piling up so treading water got harder. But I can finally take a breath. Thanks so much for the kind words and encouragement! Good to have you visit:)

  4. Eliz@MirthandMotivation January 3, 2020 at 5:47 AM #

    Keep up the inner work and reflections on pushing through the bs. You are on to something.

    • The Guat January 4, 2020 at 10:06 AM #

      Thanks 🙂 I’ll keep pushing through, it was tough to keep taking steps but I managed to do it, and now I find myself seeing some light. Sending light and possibilities your way.

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