Years ago, I found an article written by a man who used to receive letters from a man who was in prison for life and would never get out. ...
Friday, August 31, 2018
Cresting the Hill
My wife and I have been painting the inside of our our house since June. Our goal is to paint every room and ceiling and to declutter the rooms and closets as we paint them and to fix things that we find or that we have ignored.
This has been an interesting process. We have been making good progress, but I have found that painting is one of the easier tasks. Giving away sentimental but unused things that have been packed away for years has been the most difficult task.
I would rather paint 10 ceilings rather than make the decision to donate or throw away baby shoes, our children's old lunch boxes, or toys they played with.
Now I have found out that I have to have surgery in early September and because of all the doctor appointments related to the surgery our progress has slowed to a crawl. And, we have four upstairs rooms left.
So, being an old runner, I draw from that knowledge at times like this.
When the road suddenly becomes steep, and your legs get tired and your breathing is hard, do these things:
1. Straighten your posture (stand tall) and face the hill. Bending over and looking at your feet only serves to restrict your breathing at a time when you need to breathe.
2. Shorten your stride. This keeps you standing tall, and helps manage the steepness of the hill. Short steps, in this case, are better than long ones.
3. Have faith. Draw on your resources. Trust that your previous experiences and training will carry you upward.
4. Walk if you have to. Things slow down when you walk and you can collect your wind. Sometimes this may be the only way to get up the hill.
5. Take a rest if you have to. There is nothing wrong with a time out in order to gather your strength.
5. Stay in the moment. Feel the wind. Smell the autumn air. Rejoice in the movement of your body, and know that the pain of this movement causes growth and endurance.
So, onward and ever upward, to the unpainted rooms upstairs, whose closets are full, where decisions will make me ponder the years, and I will rejoice in the wonder of it all.