With a 34 year history of health problems ranging from my eyes throughout my major organs and ending all the way at a toe on my left foot that stopped growing when I was 14 years old. running has never been on my bucket list. My husband is a runner. He's competed in the St. George Marathon. He runs to relax, work-out, and treat his asthma. If someone tells me "we should run together" I look over my shoulder to see what's chasing me. Even then, It'll take me a minute to decide if running away is worth it.
Walking? Climbing? Hiking? Activities I sincerely enjoy, but most people I go with do not enjoy having me along. Until I received a borrowed pancreas last year, it was too much for me to do more than walk. Over the last year I've enjoyed hiking again. I went all over West Yellow Stone with my family only two months after surgery. Okay, I wasn't the poster child for the National Forest or anything...but I did it. We finally took our kids to Disneyland and I did two back-toback days all over the park with only sore feet and an extreme dislike for standing in line. Hiking and Zip-lining in Mexico a few months ago was the most fun I've had in years. My body is supporting me for the first time in over three decades and I forget it still has limits.
Last Saturday, I got the crazy idea to go on a hike with Erik and my boys. It was 2:30 in the afternoon. The temperature here in our corner of the desert was nearly 100 degrees and Erik was hesitant. He knows me better than I know myself sometimes and I should've listened...I didn't of course.
The hike was only three miles round trip. It was a well cared for trail. I could do it!
Well, the second we stepped into the driveway and I felt the heat I tried to back out. It was too late. I'd promised the kids, we were all ready to go and Erik knows when I start to doubt, what I need is a swift kick in my butt.
Off we went.
It was just as I should've known. The heat was so intense, my poor borrowed organs mutinied and i barely could walk. I tripped over every stone and crack in the lava. My missing kneecap took a sabbatical and my one remaining leg turned to Jalapeno Jam. Burning hot and mushy. I made it about 3/4 of the way before I had Erik prop me in the shade of a rock and take the kids the rest of the way.
As I prayed for the strength to get back to the car, I wondered why this seemingly short romp across a lava ridge about did me in? Yeah, there were obstacles, but 'come-on' that's just life. Why did I feel my strength had failed me?
That little voice, my conscious or my Savior, whispered the answers. "Do not run faster than you have strength."
It wasn't my body which failed me. It was me who failed my body.
Between the two weeks I've been fighting a monster head cold, and my foray into my own Mt. Everest, I hadn't slept through the night in a week. My blood count was low and I was waiting to recieve IV Iron. I was only sleeping about 4 hours, coughing the rest of the night and I was eating only enough to take my medicine and stay alive.
Life does not take from us anything we don't willingly surrender. It throws problems, obstacles and trials in our path. It is only when we give up on the vessel we've been given, that it gives up on us.
Your body will fail you, tell you no more, and refuse to do what you want. Have you ever wondered what it is that you want that is more important than taking care of you?
Yes, your fllor being dirty may drive you crazy...today. It'll drive you crazy even longer if you break down before you take care of yourself and eventually the floor.
One of the things I've learned over...well, my life, is that there is more to us than what physical capacity. When your body starts to tell you it can't or won't do what you want, find out what's inside you. Find out what you can offer the worl outside of what your body can do.
I'll hike again. In cooler temperatures, with more strength, and better prepared. I still won't be any one's inspiration of strength. I'll do it to remind myself that I'm more than borrowed organs, broken and missing body parts and a stubborn blind lady. I hope people see more of the real me. I hope the physical part of me is not who I really am. I guess I'll never know unless I polish more than my body.