Friday, August 13, 2010
Running with Angels
With a combination of stressful events in my life, I have developed some extremely bad eating habits and have temporarily eliminated exercise from my "to do" list. As I approach the big FIVE-O, I realize that if this pattern doesn't change now, I may be facing some serious health issues down the line. This morning, I decided to go for a jog to get the ball rolling. Since this is something I have not done in about ten years, I was a little nervous about how my heart (not to mention my body) would handle it.
The most amazing thing happened as I stepped onto the two-mile path by the river and began a slow, steady jog...I could feel my daughter jogging along side me. If I closed my eyes, I could even hear her footfalls and smell the shampoo she used to use. The amazing part wasn't that she was next to me; this happens often. When I am driving in the car, I feel her sitting in the passenger seat. Sometimes, I see her out of the corner of my eye, but if I turn to look, she is not there... So I am used to feeling that she is still close to me. The amazing part was that she was jogging...with no pain!
From the time Brittney was five years old, she played sports...soccer, t-ball then softball, volleyball, and basketball. When she was in the 6th grade, she experienced severe back pain which led us to discover that she had scholiosis. She wore a brace, dealt with the pain and played sports right through it. When she was a sophomore in high school, she had a growth spurt and the scholiosis hit a crisis point. She was scheduled for surgery the day after Christmas in 2007 and two metal rods were put in her back. Team sports had been such an important part of her life...and now that was over. For the last two years of her life, she didn't talk about it, but I could tell it bothered her that she wasn't able to be quite as active as she had been.
But on that jogging path there were no metal bars! Just Brittney...full of energy, encouraging me to keep up with her. I didn't feel tired, or sore or resentful about the extra 40 pounds I was dragging along that path with me. Instead, I felt like I was being carried by angel's wings...maybe I was.