It doesn’t matter how slow you go, just as long as you don’t stop. No truer words have I seen today.
I’m not going to dwell on this but I am in a lot of pain this morning. Joints, muscles, my hands, you name it, and I am definitely moving SLOW. Moving around, having breakfast, and taking my time hasn’t improved it much but it is what it is, and life is still in motion. I want to go hike. It is not happening today. So what do I do? Well, I have a yard that I am preparing for Spring and that too has to stay in motion. It’s right here, outside the back door, and conveniently close to my household facilities if I need anything at all. Fancy that. So there is no reason to stay inside and feel sorry about being uncomfortable. At no point in my life has that ever been a reality anyway (not having pain), so today is no different than any other. I am moving.
This goes back, as always, to adaptation. We have to adapt. It doesn’t matter if you are perfectly healthy and facing life circumstances, or you have Lupus and Fibromyalgia or some other autoimmune disease, like I do. It doesn’t matter if you are badly damaged with injuries and trying to recover, or if you have cancer or had a heart attack, or if you are blind, or deaf, or if you face challenges in life like autism, or borderline personality, or bipolar disorder, or depression. It doesn’t matter if you are a struggling addict, or you are very young, or very old, or in a wheelchair, use a cane, or need a handicap placard for more convenient parking. It doesn’t matter if you can’t go out in the sun because of photosensitivity or porphyria, or if you have severe allergies, or if you are agoraphobic and have a lot of work ahead to make your life more functional. Everyone is dealing with SOMETHING. None of the things I just listed are on a graded scale either, just so you know. We all process things differently, and what is taken in stride by one most assuredly will be a devastating mental blow to another. I am saying that we all have to adapt to something. It may not be today, but it will happen, I promise you that. When that challenge lands in your lap, what will you do with it? It really is up to you. Will you let it define you, or will you define how it will exist in your life? Will you let it take over and rule your emotions, or will you direct your emotions to control how it affects your actions? I would choose the latter in both cases. Anyone wondering what changed in the last 6 months for me – there you have it. It is my life. They are my choices. You have to make those for yourself as well.
I could very easily stay in my house today and watch movies on Netflix. I enjoy the documentaries an awful lot. That’s inspirational.. watching other people do things.. but what am I going to do? It’s all well and good to get inspired, but then you have to put it into motion somewhere. If it’s not on my hiking trail, then it’s going to be in my garden. Everything necessary for a healthier life is important, and it’s okay to shift your focus on the days that require it. Today is one of those days for me. I know that Spring will be upon us very soon (yay!), and I am determined to grow as much of my own food as I can this year. Having healthy, proper fuel for my body will make for a better year getting out there to hike, and camp, and explore anyway. I don’t need to present evidence or argument for that case, because we all know it’s the truth. A lot of my friends are working on gardens this year as well – some experienced, and some new. Many people are realizing that they need to. BRAVO! Do it. While you are at it, plant some heirloom varieties – they need to be preserved. Be creative, courageous, and do something new. Even if the garden is not new. Add something new. 🙂
Caring for yourself at home is the foundation for launching into your adventures. I encourage everyone to take very seriously the responsibility of fueling your body properly this year. Care about what you swallow, every single time you pick up a fork or a glass. Think about the effect it will have once it is in you, and the stack-up of each and every little choice you are making. Ask yourself my favorite motivational words, whenever I am slowing down in the middle of a workout or a hike. HOW BAD DO YOU WANT IT? If you know that you can make a better choice right now, then step in that direction and take it. Water instead of a soda? Sure. Fruit and vegetable smoothie instead of a French fries? Absolutely. Walking around the block instead of downing a box of Cheez Its in front of the TV? You better believe it!
I say this often, and here it is again…. Start wherever you are at! Don’t look at the extreme athletes of this world and say I can’t do what they are doing, so “oh well”. Watch them, and gain something from it. These are people that have busted their butts to get to that point. They have worked VERY hard to achieve their goals, and they are only so impressive because they let that internal drive carry them through. We all have it. So what if they are doing something beyond what you will ever achieve. What WILL you achieve? If you really want to be that impressive, you still can be, but you’re going to have to work as hard as they did. So… do you want it? If you want it, then go get it. If you want something else, then get that. Get something. If the achievement is just being able to walk up a set of stairs, or make it around the block, or to be able to stand again (I’ve been there), then that is just as important and just as impressive – and it is your personal extreme – as anything they ever did. This starts on the inside. You have to find your center. You have to want it.
I saw someone recently saying that their problem was that they wanted to want it, but no longer did. Their issue was apathy, in other words. I thought about it for a long time, wondering what would you say to someone like that? It’s easy to talk about feeding the fire of desire when there is one, but how you get a spark where the light has gone out? I’m not talking about someone that is putting out their own flames over and over, and don’t duck innocently because I see a lot of you doing it. If you feel a twinge of guilt right now, it’s on you to stop doing whatever it is that douses the fire. You know what it is. No one else does. What about the true apathetic stall? Your challenge is to start a fire. That’s it. If one thing doesn’t do it, then keep looking. Put yourself in motion, pick some direction, and move. It’s still the same process. You don’t have to feel something immediately. It will happen with perseverance. If you really didn’t care at all, you wouldn’t be online reading or asking questions, or asking people for help. So the truth is, you care about something inside. Dig for it. Dig deep.
It’s a new year. It’s a new slate. Take out all of your crayons and start using them, because there are a lot of colors in there. Make it beautiful in your own way. My favorite 2013/2014 meme right now said, “Tomorrow is the first blank page of a 365 page book. Write a good one.” I plan to do just that, and I started yesterday. You should too. Write a good one.