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Friday, March 9, 2012


Hope and faith are wonderful.  They caress my stamina in the hush before I travel from that place of thinking maybe I will get out of bed and go run... to that place when I feel unstoppable on the run running the first 25 meters of my morning... down hill of course.  Start every journey with hope and faith...

Finish every journey with belief.

I went for a swim today.  Put my cane down by the lane, walked my towel over to the hooks.  Placed my glasses carefully on the ledge.  Walked back to the lane I had chosen.  That's your impression watching from the side, or the hot tub, or not watching at all because nothing seemed odd.  What really happened was this - I went swimming today.  Came out of the ladies change room and noticed there was no guard standing close enough to ask which lane was free.  Walked slowly around to the deep end as if with purpose.  Judging movement in the water.  Tested a coughs echo off the wall.  Stepped around the puddle I knew to be always there.  Placed my cane on the ground by the lane I hoped and prayed was in fact empty.  Took three deep breaths to ensure no movement there.  Turned and walked to the hook to hang my towel and place my glasses on the ledge.  Turned again... Recounted the steps and the angle of my turn to get back to my lane without falling in the pool.  Felt the grate under foot and my cane with my left finger tips.  Sat down and put on my cap and goggles.  Someone came and sat beside me. They asked to share a lane.  I went into a big "absolutely... sorry if I bump you ... I don't see very well" speech.  Start every journey with hope and faith.

Movement and chaos in the water brings me to swim faster.  As if my body is craving a rush or my head just wants to get out of the pool again.  Give me a quiet still water and I could swim in silent peace forever. Movement and chaos and I'm counting strokes to the next breath.

Finish every journey with belief.

From the pool to a strength class.  Not my usual instructor.  I get to give my speech again.  To my trainer, to my neighbours, to .... who knows... This trainer doesn't demonstrate the same way.  We are both learning today.  Start every journey with hope and faith and carry stubbornness with you close at hand.

Walking home from the gym my mind is on fire.  It's also asleep.  Singing the same song on repeat.  Usually I have a Tom Petty, Elton John, American Pie internal carrying tune.  Today my walk home was inspired by the dark side of motivation... and "I'm not afraid" ... but maybe I am... and just don't care? Truth is a horrible companion.  She is a needy cranky unaffectionate soul that stops me in my tracks without notice. 

Yes I am afraid.  I hate crossing this road.  I hate not knowing if your turning signal is on.  I hate that look I'm thinking you are giving me as if to wave me on... I want to scream..."I CAN'T SEE YOU" ... but instead I give my speech..."sorry (grin) I don't see very well... didn't mean to get in your way"

Finish every journey with belief...

... It occurs to me that I give an impression as a disabled person.  A heightened illusion that we are calm and sturdy and all things capable.  That we have a sense of fight and determination that seems lacking in ... say a teenager when you are trying to get them out of bed on a Saturday.  This is false and I am endlessly sorry for that.  I struggle in every moment.  I stand up straight only when you are looking.  The problem is I never know when you are looking... I strive to bypass an understated expectation of the disabled person.  However... in so doing... people believe in me. 

Let me be the first to admit that is an intense responsibility.  There are days when the sky is dark enough for all things...and days when I cannot leave my house.  The space in between is carefully frustrating.  Especially as a parent.  Start every journey with faith and hope....

Today I stopped at a Tim Hortons and bought myself a coffee.  That's what it looked like.  But really what happened was... I thought about it for five blocks.  Wondered if I could cross the drive through.  Panicked about whether a driver would wave me on.  Considered my actual need for coffee.  Which was increasing with the stress. Misjudged the distance between me and the puddle I could hear them driving through.  Shoved my chin higher... scrambled to read the amount I owed that no one read outloud.... Started to sweat in my winter coat from stress. Crossed the same drive through.  Stood on the corner and thanked the lord for a red light so I could catch my breath.

Finish every journey with belief.

It's Runstreak day 433 today. I did that, despite and because of.... my disability.

Peace to you in running :)

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