I could still remember back when I was in college when my friend Enzo and I would run the Ateneo grounds in the evenings. Most of the time I ran on my own, but being with Enzo, and sometimes Nescy, helped me get over the creeps when running in the high school area at night (that place had a lot of ghost stories and very few light posts).

Running was easy back then. When I ran, my mind was elsewhere while my body did what it had to do automatically. I loved running because I felt my lungs burn and my legs in heated pleasure as I hit the pavement. But nowadays running is different. I have to think about my posture and where and how my feet land. After I had transverse myelitis (spinal inflammation) in 2009, I never really got to run the way I used to. I have not regained that same kind of balance and sure-footedness that was second nature to anyone who could walk. I miss that feeling so badly—being able to let go, to just fly away with my feet. But I’m working on it. I never stop thinking about getting back, getting strong again, so I could run as I used to: feet on the ground, mind up in the clouds.

These photos were taken during a fun run in SM Mall of Asia sometime in 2008. I already had lupus then and could no longer run because of rheumatoid arthritis affecting my joints. I remember that taking these picture was a struggle. I had a DSLR and a big lens that weighed around 2 kilos and I was struggling to carry it let alone take decent pictures, but I still managed to. I unearthed these photos from the now extinct These photos reminded me that I still want to run—run like I used to—run as if I were just breathing.

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