For months now, probably since my knee blew out in early February, I’ve been living in a state of pause. I stopped going to the gym. I stopped chasing health goals all around, and found myself looking at my list of things to do and achieve, and simply turning away from them. Each one of these goals felt insurmountable, unattainable, and requiring way too much focus and effort than I could muster. I don’t think I realized just how depressed and sanguine I’d become as I spent the month on the couch nursing my injury.
Summer has come, and I’m not any closer to reaching those goals – fitness, fiscal liberation, and the like – but something has snapped and broken inside me, for the better.
Earlier this week, I got news from a dear friend about a situation that has set him back on his heels in terms of his own life-trajectory. He’s facing a steep challenge over the next few months, possibly years, and while he reached out to me for support, I felt myself reverting into Oldest Sibling mode, planning and scheming and laying out a framework for how to help him move forward. I listened with intent to how he was feeling, and will continue to do so as he moves forward, but what this has done for me personally has been the gear-shift I’ve been needing.
I found myself able to sit down and go further with a chapter and section of my memoir that has been a huge challenge to face and come to terms with. I found a pathway forward in my own health journey that, for the first time in a long time, felt deeply close to my heart and something that I could claim as my own, rather than buying into someone else’s system, and ending up poorer and just as out of shape as when I started. I am seeing myself for what I am, right now, but I’m also once again visualizing where I want to be in a year’s time, when I turn 40, and what kinds of things I can do on a daily and consistent basis that will bring me to that place. That lamp in the dark, the thing that I am making my way towards, became clear, as though a thick bank of fog finally lifted and blew away.
This has been a good week.
It’s good to be back in my skin again, rather than feeling like an object in orbit around this lump of flesh that seemed to exist without purpose. I’m looking forward to see where this new-found drive takes me. Right now, though, I’m going to pour myself another cup of coffee and enjoy a quiet Thursday morning.
It should be noted that through all of this, Ray has been a steady rock. I’ve been able to lament to him about my stasis, and time after time, he reminded me that it’s okay to pause, to stop obsessing, to stop beating myself up for needing a break in all that I’ve got going on. We took off on a camping trip to Walla Walla, Washington, and even then, while I was dealing with a cold and full of snot and ick, he remained constant and life-affirming, all while I was feeling so dejected for seemingly ruining our trip. I am reminded daily just how lucky I am to have him in my life.