Something interesting occurred when the truth set in. I AM ON MY OWN. Initially fear and pain moved through like a storm front. I felt the thunder echo in my chest. I let the lightning blind me. I let the rain soak me to my deepest layer. I neither ran from the storm, nor latched on to that cloud and became the storm. I just experienced all its layers. I AM ON MY OWN.
Once the storm blew over, two fronts remained. Compassion… When a stranger behaves rudely in the grocery store, I no longer roll my eyes. I wonder what kind of hardship they must be going home to. Feeling hurt on a deeper level has heightened my awareness of it. I feel compelled to buy hot chocolate for the man dressed as the statue of liberty, beckoning me to stop in to file my taxes. And write a note to that friend who is discouraged. And bring clean water to third world nations. I’m freakin myself out a little!
And courage… I AM ON MY OWN. And I am standing up for myself, my boundaries, my dreams, and my convictions (translation: I don’t put up with s*$t anymore)! Because although the path is not clear, I AM CLEAR on what I’m after, and what matters to my heart. I would rather fight a courageous battle, let go of the toxic influences in my life, and be ON MY OWN than choose to passively let my own dreams be poisoned!
So I feel the fear, but never can I tighten my grip on it. That is a luxury I simply do not have. I AM ON MY OWN. So I have to keep my head up. I have to keep the fight up. I have to run one more 400 on the track. Send out one more resume… Even if that leads to reading one more rejection letter. Save one more dollar. Say one more prayer. And live as if it has already been answered, even when the opposite seems to transpire.
Why? Because I am NOT on my own. It has never been more apparent that my friends and family are attuned to my own pain. I could be at the end of a tempo run, making dinner, or sitting at a stop light, and get a call or message with the exact words I needed to hear in that moment. Even it it’s just “What are you doing later? Let’s grab pad thai!”
And I am NOT on my own! All around me are precious lives fighting overwhelming battles. I choose to fight my own battles courageously knowing that at any given moment, someone may witness my effort to throw aside what weighs me down and choose to do the same. I am NOT on my own… I am part of a great cloud of those running with endurance the race that is before us!