The first inclination of many would be to fall back into a couch, grab some bon bons (but really, who eats bon bons)…a bottle or two of wine (I actually don’t drink, you know, the bipolar)…call a friend…
Scream. Cry. Laugh.
Hell, I’m human. And I admit, I’ve definitely got a temper on me. So, I’ve done more screaming and hitting walls than crying uncontrollably (but it does happen). This is all normal I’ve been told. There will be a rollercoaster of emotions, a grieving of what was and what could have been. I don’t deny that I’ve had my what ifs, but mainly it’s a feeling of abandonment, the reneging that hurts. It’s a complicated situation and I don’t point fingers. Many factors come into play with my journey to starting over. And honestly, I’m not mad at anyone. Not even disappointed.
This summer I prayed for one thing:
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses allcomprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4: 6-7
There is an innate compulsion to sit in your favorite college sweats and watch re-runs of Iyanla Vanzant’s Fix My Life, imagining that she is working miracles in your own life…
Ten years ago, I left my home and headed off to the BIG APPLE (Staten Island, with only a shadow of glory) to play basketball in college…to live a dream that my family had for me. I had no idea what I was getting into. I thought it would be like high school but more time consuming. This was a golden opportunity but far from the dreams that I had for myself.
Long story short, my first semester was horrible. I won’t mention all of the drinking and smoking and the partying…why? It’s not relevant, even though you’re so interested. Maybe another time but probably not. My first semester was full of many struggles. One exciting challenge was meeting my mile time. Now, I don’t remember what it was, but I hated running back them; I can’t imagine not running now. I don’t remember 100% if it was this particular goal that we had to reach to get our team sweats. Just know that they were not handed to us with the rest of our gear. We had to earn them.
Back to that mile time…
Until we met our mile time, we had to do conditioning at 5 am every morning, except weekends I believe. It was challenging. I admit that I was not the best conditioned athlete. But now, ten years later, I get giddy at the opportunity to beat five miles of pavement in the morning before my girls awake. I am excited to try new conditioning drills.
But starting over gets to you sometimes; the running shoes sit lonely in the corner and the jump rope and the kettle bells collect dust. You get lost in the emotion and lose your (physical) motion as well.
The other day, while self-loathing in those sweats paid with sweat, my youngest nephew started begging me to go outside. I obliged. After all, then he would stop running around the house like a maniac! But of course, being outside wasn’t good enough. I had to play football with him also…OK!
After a few throws and dives (yea, I get’s it in), I found myself lost in my movement, in the innocence of the laughter surrounding me. Those sweats got covered in mud from military crawls and running zigzag through the yard.
And like the lifting of the fog, I saw myself again.
I saw myself as we rode scooters and bikes and dug for worms.
I saw myself as the wet of the soggy grass weighed down my pants.
I saw myself as my nephews and daughter laughter with delight as I tried and failed at climbing at tree.
And every time I saw myself, I could hear Abba the Faithful and Ever Present One laugh mightily…
“Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.” – Philippians 4: 8-9
In the movement, I found the true, the honorable, the pure, and the lovely and good…I saw it in the children. I felt it in my spirit.
Immanuel, God you are with me.
In the movement, nothing was wrong; perfection was defined. It isn’t all things going as planned, but finding the abounding Grace and abiding presence of God through Christ Jesus.
Lying in the muddy grass, my sweats reflect a different challenge I face before me: play ball, stay moving. Don’t let the pain in the process trump the beauty of the journey…
Just. Keep. Moving.