Tag Archives: spring

I kept going

runYesterday, I ran the longest I have run to date. I owe this to a bluejay, a swallow and two women I have never met.

As I hit mile one, fatigued, hot and sweaty, I was thinking I would just go a little further and turn around and walk back. I could try again tomorrow right? No harm, no foul. I am not really competing with any one but myself and who would blame me? I had already done a couple hours of yard work. Just then a car pulled out of a driveway, a woman in the passenger seat waved and gave me the biggest smile. It felt like she was cheering me on. I kept going.

A little later I noticed a bluejay hoping from fence post to fence post just ahead of me. He would stop and watch me until I got a little close then fly to the next post. It detracted me enough to get a little past the 1 and 3/4 mile mark without really noticing it. I kept going.

I let myself talk me into stopping at 2 miles, same reasons as above. Just before I got to my stopping point another car pulled out of a driveway, this time the woman in the passenger seat waved, smiled and gave me a thumbs up. That simple gesture lifted my spirits, put a smile on my face and gave me just a little more energy. I kept going.

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About a half mile later a swallow decided to fly with me, weaving in and out of the grass in the field next to my route. He would get ahead, then come back and do that little ballet flight that swallows do. This went on for about 1/4 of a mile. I kept going.

By this time, turning around and going back was further than just going on. I kept going.

I thought, in our lives, in our spiritual journey, how many times does God send jut the right person at just the right time to encourage us? More than we know.

I want to be that, an encourager, someone who smiles at the stranger on the corner, the haggard mom in the store, the gentleman shuffling along with a walker. Just a smile is all it takes sometimes to keep someone going, to make their day just a little more manageable.

I want to be that person that not only keeps going, but I want to be the person that encourages others to keep going.

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Hebrews 12:1

 

My Race

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Yesterday I wrote about running, and that I was committing to this activity, and making myself accountable by telling others my intentions. I wrote about some lessons I had learned in the first week. My desire is to also learn God lessons from this experience.

God lesson #1 – Just like I have to run my own mile, and not compare my mile to someone else’s, I have to walk my walk with God. Not someone else’s, mine. I should not compare my God walk/run with others. It is so tempting to look at someone else’s race and envy the “easy” race they have to run. The truth is I don’t know what waits around the bend for them, or what horrible dark valley they have come out of. The path I was given to run is my own. There have been bumps, times of pure despair, times of great rejoicing, and carefree running. But whatever turn in the road God has for me is mine to run without comparison to other’s path.

God lesson #2 – I should not try to look too far ahead on my God run. Just a few steps, just enough to not trip. If I knew all that was going to happen, how could I love and enjoy the moment of now? I would fret and worry, and miss the joy of the moment. If I had known that when my daughter was 6 months old I would find myself single, would I have missed out on this incredible woman? If I had known that I would live through the pain of losing my son at early in his life, would I have missed those amazing 30 years? God graciously does not allow me to see all that is ahead on my run. He allows me to see just enough.

My race is my race.

 

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Recently I decided to start running again. When I say again, don’t think I have run recently, it has been many years, 40 to be exact since I “use to run”. I have not run since high school. There were several things that got me started, I want to lose some weight, I want to be healthier, a friends blog, and the realization that at my next birthday I am going to be closer to 60 than 50, (Whew, that really snuck up!) I want to be one of those “seniors” that stays active, and does things, so I am committing to run.

I started last week when my new running shoes came. My commitment is to run 3 times per week. My short term goal is to run a 5k in June. Sounds easy enough, right? Sure, but life has already threatened to get in the way. Next week is a full week. Several appointments after work are going to make it hard to stick to my commitment. My first thought was, “Well, maybe I will really start the next week”. But I know me, if I don’t keep with my commitment now, I won’t. Life will always get in the way, always and I will always be putting it off until the next week and then the next and pretty soon I won’t even be thinking about it anymore.

So I have to make a plan, and then another if that plan is not going to work, and then another. I need to make back up plans for the “just in case”.

I have done a few things that I hope will help me keep my commitment, one is huge for me, I am telling people, that makes me accountable. I am not comfortable with this, I want to be able to hide if I fail. But here it is for all the world to see, I am now accountable, you all now know.

I bought really good, and also important, cute running shoes. The really good part is so I don’t injure myself and have to quit running, the cute part is well just because.

I bought good wireless headphones, music in my ears helps me stay focused, and the wireless part because wires bug me. 🙂

I looked for an app that fit my style and would help me achieve my goal. This app “talks” to me and tells me when to warm up, when to run, when to walk, and when to cool down, it will methodically, over the next 9 weeks, guide me to run 3 miles.

A couple lessons already learned, I can’t look too far ahead. It discourages me. Just a few feet, just far enough so I don’t trip.

Another important lesson, I have to run my mile, not anyone else’s mile. My second run I thought I needed to improve my time by a certain amount. I pushed myself too hard, I almost quit part way through the run. I nearly sent myself into a full blown asthma attack. I felt like I was sucking on my inhaler like a pacifier. It is not important at this point how fast I am going, just that I am going. Today’s run I slowed down, ran just hard enough to challenge me but not hard enough to kill me. 🙂 I finished, and felt really good.

My goal this week was 3 runs, I met it. It feels good, now to make plans to meet my 3 run goal next week.

futile to resist

I could feel it yesterday, tugging at my soul. I tried to resist, it is not time yet. I have so many “inside” projects yet to finish.

But it kept nagging, poking at my heart. It was calling me, “come on, just a little time, just a little yard work, you know you want to. . .” I gave in. I found the promise of spring all over the yard.

Mr. Hummingbird greeted me at the back door, as he often does.

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Buds on trees.

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Flowers wanting to burst forth.

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Even lowly weeds, heralding the promise.

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Babies frolicking in the meadow.

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It is on its way . . .

Spring!

My new life . . .

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A lifetime ago, I skipped my way through spring and ran toward summer, arms open wide. My hands in the dirt, anxiously waiting for those little green sprouts to peak up through the brown dirt. My excitement about growing things and being outside in the sun knew no bounds.

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That was a lifetime ago, in my new life, I run toward summer, but there is a sharp pain in my chest. I push on; I love this time of year. My heart hurts. I stop and take a deep breath; the pain does not go away. I push on, skipping, running. The pain is still there. I push on.

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I want to love summer in the carefree way I always have, but the reality is that I will never again skip through spring and run toward summer in the same way. There will always be the pain.

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In this new life I continue to look at the amazing things that spring and summer bring with a sense of awe and wonder; the sounds of hummingbird wings, the smell of honeysuckle, and the feel of the sun on my shoulders. I will still skip and run, but the wonder of summer is tempered by the pain in my heart, in this . . . my new life.

Mother’s Day

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This is a tough day for me. I miss my son. I miss so many things about him, but his hug, that is what I miss the most today. His big lift you off the ground all encompassing hug. I just plain miss him.

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I sit here this morning trying to process conflicting emotions. I am so grateful for Chelsey, I don’t want her to ever think she is not enough, or that she is second to Jason in anyway. I am so happy she is my daughter. She has grown to be an amazing woman, and sometimes I feel like she gets lost in my grief over Jason.

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I have two great adult step-children, I love their interaction with each other, it reminds me so much of Jason and Chelsey’s relationship. If I am truthful though, sometime is makes me so sad. I miss Chelsey and Jason together, I miss their interaction, I miss seeing how they cared for each other.

Chelsey

I know Chelsey grieves for the loss of her brother, the loss of their friendship, and I feel a little guilty and helpless for not knowing how to help her with that. I barely know how to process my own right now. Some days, like today, it is so big.

I feel like I am on a teeter toter of emotions, at the top I am happy, grateful, full of joy for the life I have. For having the privilege of being Mom to two amazing, wonderful, God-loving children. So grateful for the wonderful man God gave me to help me walk through this. At the bottom I am sad, deeply sad. There is so much more “up” than down these days, but right now, I am bouncing on the bottom. I am sad, I am missing Jason.

 

Here I sit

Jason's gardenI am finally sitting in the garden this morning. A space planned and built by me. To honor my son, Jason. This project has been healing for me. A place to put my creative energy. A place he would be proud of. Built with reflection and lots of love.

As I was putting this together, I had plenty of time to reflect and remember. I remember my dad watching me build some shelving, years ago.He told me I built just like his mom. Never really measuring anything, but seeing what I wanted to do and then just building it. My grandmother on my dad’s side died when I was young. But I have snippets of memories. When I look at pictures of her I can see myself in her style. Without really knowing her, I carry part of her in me. I would have liked to know her.

I got to thinking about how we all carry parts of others in us. These people make us who we are. I watch my now adult daughter and see so much of me in her, I pray it is only the good parts.

This morning I sit here in the garden, at peace, listening to the birds lift their voices in praise, to the one who formed me, and gives me the peace that passes all understanding. I think of those who have gone on before me and am forever grateful they are part of who I am. I will carry them with me, and pass them on to the next generation, with just a little of me mixed in.