Like all humans, I seek out activities that will allow me to shine. I know I'm a good writer so I write. When I was a kid, I knew I was a good dancer, so I danced.
But life isn't all about adhering to the straight and narrow and doing what we know we're good at doing. Sometimes, maybe more often than we'd like to think, conquering a challenge --a real, bona fide challenge-- is more meaningful than earning fifty As in a row.
When it comes to running, I will never win a race. I'm self-aware enough to realize that someone else on the road will always be faster than me --a whole lot faster!
But that doesn't mean I should torch my tennis shoes.
This morning, I ran my first-ever complete 5K. To this moment, I'm not sure how I did it, because I'm not in great shape and my knees are creaky and my lungs were burning by the time I crossed the finish line. But I finished. And I finished 869th out of 1855 participants, right smack in the middle of the pack. A solid 'C', if you will.
And I am so pleased.
So I got a C in 5K running. The me of my youth would probably be annoyed over the time and would be kicking me for not trying harder. But the truth is, I tried as hard as I could. When I crossed that finish line, I knew with 100% certainty that I had done my absolute best. I laid every bit of what I had to offer out on the table.
And it was good enough for 869th place.
Because here's the thing. If I'd said 'aw, naw, I'm not doing THAT because I suck at running,' I never would've been out on that road, utterly alone amid that pack of joggers. And I never would've had the morning to run and remember and focus on Logan and all he went through just to live a few extra months with us. And I never would've called out to God to ask for help when I wasn't sure I could make it. If I'd stayed in my comfort zone, I never would've been in the position to need help. And believe me, after not training at all for the past year, it's a miracle I managed to jog 3.1 miles straight without stopping! A true miracle. Had I remained tucked into my happy zone, I would've missed seeing that prayer for help be answered. The whole 'You are strong in my weakness' thing? Totally true.
So, open yourself up to miracles. Put yourself in uncomfortable situations. And then ask for help.
And you'll get it.