How Running Ruined My Relationship, Killed My Faith…and Saved My Life
My high school boyfriend and I made a bet: he'd learn about my religion, Mormonism, if I took up his religion, running. Neither of us was ready for what came next.
Illustrations by Ran Zheng
The day my doctor released me from in-patient psych, he said, “Allison, I’ll make you a deal. You can go home on the following conditions: 1) You will take Prozac, the high dose, and you won’t even think about getting off it for an entire year, and 2) You will make yourself run, every day, for at least 20 minutes. Because your life depends on it.”
I agreed, and stood behind the Plexiglass window by the nursing station, waiting for the bin that held all the belongings I had been required to hand over the day I checked in: my wallet, my keys, and the laces from my running shoes. As I threaded my sneakers and prepared to keep my promise by jogging home to the apartment I shared with four other Yale grad students, I remembered another deal, the one that started this whole mess. The one I had made about a decade earlier with my high school boyfriend. A deal about sex, running and the Mormon Church.
I fell for my first boyfriend when I was 15, arriving home from chur…
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