I tried something new this morning. Before I even got out of bed, I thought about all the things for which I’m grateful. Amazing how just a few moments of focusing on the positive can really set the tone for the day.
You know, the folks in the not-that-far-under-80 group are so nice. I’m still pretty new to showing up at the crack o’ dawn to work out at the community gym, but they’ve made me feel completely welcome. They smile and say “Good morning” to me when I arrive, still half asleep and puffy, and they wave a farewell to me when I leave a while later, all sweaty and self-satisfied. Such a small thing but it’s a really nice way to start the day. I will miss them when I move away.
Even though I only know them by the names I’ve given them – Betty, Walter, Ralph, et al – they’ve been with me through a particularly tough time. In part, it was soaking them in every morning, when making it through the rest of the day of work and errands and mimicking the things people do when their hearts are whole seemed insurmountable, that helped me. It doesn’t even matter that they didn’t know it. In fact, it means more to me that they were kind to me for no other reason than that is who they are.
“So are you a member of our rewards club?” A cheerful woman in her forties singsongs as she’s ringing up my purchases.
“No, thanks,” I answer with a quick smile that I realize doesn’t feel forced for the first time in a while.
“Okay, that’ll be $33.13” She wraps up two bottles of wine – one white and one red – leans in with a smile and in a conspiratorial whisper tells me, “We’re having a wine tasting tonight.”
I pop my wallet back into my purse, pick up the bag from the counter, smile at her and whisper back, “Me, too.“
This will be the last of the wine runs for a while as I start training in September for a different kind of run. A half-marathon has been on my bucket list for a long while. This may seem like no big deal to many folks but I’m so not a runner. I’m a wogger – walk, jog, walk, jog. My knees are not good; they do that snap-crackle-pop thing. It’s an old injury after which I was told, “Well, so long as you’re not a runner, you should be fine.”
This is something that I’ve really always wanted to do, and I think that so long as I train carefully and incorporate strength training, I’ll be able to check this one off my list. I’m meeting with a trainer tomorrow, so we shall see.
It feels really good to begin working toward goals again. So much of my life was tied up with the things that we wanted. My job that, though rewarding, is super stressful and not the type of role I ever thought I would take on again, but I accepted it because it played to my strengths, was located in an area we both liked and because it paid well. All these things would end up helping us to build the future we wanted together. Before taking this job, the last two moves I made were for his job, because we were together. We did things with his friends and family but rarely with mine.
I’m not casting blame. I chose to participate. He, we and us – that was my world. The choices I made for my everyday life, because I was someone’s partner, were different, though, than I would have made for myself and that’s okay. It’s just that it’s time to start living my life for me again, which is a little sad and scary and wonderful all at the same time. And that’s okay, too.