The first time I ran I was 2 or 3. Packed a little plastic suitcase, and left. At 15, belongings in plastic garbage bags, I ran.

And I ran and ran, ran and ran, ran and ran.

Until my face was on cement, until my heart was locked up – tender and raw under the chains.

I ran and ran until I couldn’t ignore my tears, or the shards of dignity that lay on un-vacuumed carpet. I ran.

I ran and ran until I didn’t know who I was, or what was real. I ran.


Woken by a dream one night. A small woman, wearing support hose and a hat, came to the rock ledge (under which I was living…in the shadows.) “It’s time to come out,” she said. “I’m scared and I don’t want to,” I said. She reached her hand in to me. “It’s time to come out.”

And come out I did.

And I ran and ran from isolation and despair. And I ran toward help and healing and connection. And I ran with my grief and my rage and my exhaustion and my joy. I danced with freedom and painted serenity. I ran.

I ran toward Source and service and herenowness. Oh I ran. Thank goodness I ran.

I ran for people, in a sweaty, delicious,drummed-out prayer circle, for those trapped in their minds and their madness and sadness; held under in their bodies and in institutions and by their behaviours. I ran.

And now I run, gratefully. Heart-poundingly. That we may all be free.


The Artist: Lisa Dumas Neufeld is an alchemist and an educator 
based in Manitoba, Canada. She writes, speaks, coaches, and 
facilitates workshops centered around holistic transformation. 
Her primary interest is in living a juicy, deeply connected life. 
She plays with paint, photography, breath-work, collage, and 
coloured gel pens. Her mission is to share what she has been given 
and to learn from all of the deliciousness around her.