How will YOUR heart feel when you give of yourself??
When asked by an acquaintance of facebook to stand in last minute and run a 5K after her friend bailed, many feelings ensued. It was definitely NOT on my priority list and definitely NOT on the rigid time schedule in my busy weekend ahead especially when we were preparing for traveling out of state the next day. But something inside me said I needed to make the time and since I had thrown it out there in a challenge earlier in the year ("if you ask me to run, I will"), I felt I HAD to follow thru.
Little did i know how it would affect ME!
You see, I had been in her position. Not believing that I could finish, not seeing the bigger picture. And fortunately along my personal journey, I have had many people in my corner helping me along the way so now was my chance to let this experience come full circle.
As we got to know each other before the race I learned that she has been following my journey on facebook feeling inspired along the way and was excited that I had actually showed up to accompany her. I kept saying that SHE should be proud of herself for "showing up" and taking on this challenge! She had just celebrated her 57th birthday and had gone through some challenges in her life (some of which doctors at one point had told her NOT to run or lift heavy things) and at the time, she played it safe! After being cleared from her new physician, she decided to take control of her health and wellness and take this running head on!
She's amazingly active and full of spunk anyway, so this challenge would be a breeze (if she could get past her negative self talk)!
As they called us to the start, I confirmed with her the 'plan' of trying to move our body forward in a running motion, no matter what her mind would tell her. Even if that meant slow it back to a very light trot!
During the race I could see self doubt start to creep up. I tried my best to encourage her to focus on other things. However, my mind kept reflecting back to when I had started out, and how my mind would get in the way. I remembered how difficult it was and that feeling of literal death in the moment...and so more encouraging words flowed...
I shared what I have learned along my journey; something we ALL know. 'You are stronger than you think.' But BELIEVING that when you want to quit or when your mind makes a compelling decision that you really can not continue, takes practice, or someone else helping you see it within yourself.
As we entered the last stretch, tears for both of us began to flow...we could see the finish. And although it was the literal end of the race, it was the beginning for both of us. For her it was completing a goal she never thought attainable and for me it was an overwhelming feeling of fullness in my heart knowing SHE did it on her own but I was a significant part in her personal journey. And what an amazing feeling that was!
Lifting other people to become the best version themselves has become my passion.
Although I have intensely studied and researched many ways to help people, sometimes it's as simple as being there and believing in someone. Try it, you'll be amazed on the amount of love and happiness that fills your heart and then we all can become a ripple of goodness to spread out into the entire world...and that alone should be a good enough reason to show up and rise by lifting others!
(And on a side note, unexpectedly she finished in the top 3 of her age and was on cloud nine!) Good things happen when you push yourself and stretch your expectations!!