I am trying to be brave.
In every aspect of my life, a theme of “bravery” is coming out over the last few months. I think part of that is that I have been trying to be brave because I feel I now have so much to fear. I did not used to feel afraid of many things (except bears, for sure always afraid of bears) but becoming a mom has given me a whole new list (and I mean a looooooong list) of things to be afraid of.
Some very rational:What if Lincoln is hurt? Is in an accident? Or becomes diseased? Or what if someone tries to steal him?
But many are very irrational:
Did he just cough? That red spot looks like it may be a rash? Is it Ebola? Are we prepared for a zombie apocalypse with a baby? I could outrun a bear while carrying a car seat right? Is that an ant near his crib?
*And while some of my regular blog readers are annoyed right now, wondering if I have become “that mom” that will no longer blog about running but instead diapers and naptimes – stay with me, the running part is coming.*
When Lincoln was first born, my mother came down from up north and stayed with me for the first week. I remember the night she was leaving I was standing in the kitchen, hiding by the stove as I burst into tears feeling so overwhelmed by fear that she was leaving and Stuart would be at work and I would be home ALONE with this very scary little baby. She gave me this Bible verse which my heart has clung to ever since:
This is where a theme of bravery has begun to show in my life. Little things that have been sprinkled in my life that I never noticed until recently; all speaking to me about being brave.
I made a short video when Lincoln was first born and one of the last shots of me pregnant shows up just as the music says, “I will be brave”, sermons at church have spoken about being brave and trusting the Lord, when we had Lincoln dedicated we had read about the bravery of Moses’ mother as she sent her little 4 month old son down the Nile in a basket, the book my small group is studying regularly discusses being brave, a friend sent me THIS BLOG about being brave with our kids - I even went to my first MOPS meeting and do you want to guess the theme this year? “Be You Bravely” J
Ok, ok get to the running part right? Well running has been awful. I felt really good once I hit a few 5k distances and thought it would not be that hard to get back to where I was pre-baby. Than my body realized what I was trying to do and it rebelled against me essentially sending me back to day one with my running.
My shins are my worst enemy (not the first time I have said that!) and when I look at my Garmin during a run it makes me want to throw it in the ditch instead of see the pace. I began to be afraid to run. I dreaded it, I felt it was pointless to try this again and I thought it was best to let that part of my life go for good.
I did not feel brave running, I felt scared and insecure and frustrated. I felt like quitting would be the better answer, and being afraid was easier than trying .
But I want to be brave. I want to be a brave woman, I want to be a brave mother and I want to be a brave runner. I have been brave – I have done things that other people would be afraid to do and I am being brave now as a mother. By fighting through the hard sad feelings I had when Lincoln was first born, by embracing the new life I have since starting a family, and I will be brave again as a runner.
So here it is, the test of my bravery – my registration for my 5th Half Marathon:
I will run this distance again. I will train my (mom) body to carry myself 21.1km regardless of how scared I feel about my shins, the distance, the long runs, the possibility of failure, or a slow pace. I will choose to be brave in my life, even on the days I would rather hide. I have 8 months to prepare for this run, I will begin official training in January and I will see my life as something different than it was a year ago, but view that as a new adventure not something to fear.
Frederick Buechner says, " One life on this earth is all that we get, whether it is enough or not enough, and the obvious conclusion would seem to be that at the very least we are fools if we do not live it as fully and bravely and beautifully as we can."
So I will do my best as I prepare physically and mentally to run long distance again. and I will try, to be brave.
"You make me brave. You call me out beyond the shore, into the waves"