Bravery

I hear that word quite a bit during the short time I am on-line, getting lost in links that take me to articles and blogs about training, running, cycling, swimming and other types of fitness.  The buzz word seems to be “BRAVE”-that if you sign up for (pick one)  a 1.) 5k 2.) 10k 3.) half mary 4.)marathon you are brave for doing so. That’s just for signing up. Then when you run the damn thing, usually with minimal training, and then blog about how life-changing and difficult it was, you are quite possibly the most awesome person in the universe.  Triple your braveness for a sprint triathlon and double it tenfold for a 70.3 or full Ironman.

Huh?

Then I must be one of the bravest old ladies out there in the world. But I know for a fact that I am not.

Bravery is signing up for military service and going where “they” send you to defend our country.

Bravery is adopting a special needs kiddo who you know will have difficulties and challenges his/her whole life.

Bravery is walking away from an abusive marriage/relationship, and supporting oneself and kid(s) and never asking for a dime from anyone.

Bravery comes from being thrown into situations where you believe you have no control and then dealing with that situation.  It never comes from things self-imposed. And big changes will never come from those situations that you alone choose for yourself.

You can’t GO and BE brave. You can’t plan for it. Bravery comes after.

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My Legacy?

How do you want to be remembered by those you love and who have loved you?  How do you want to be remembered by those you have touched over the years?  What is it you want your obituary to state or your friends and family to say about you at your memorial service (if you  choose to have one)?

There is one thing that I don’t want mentioned, written or engraved anywhere.  That I was an “athlete”, or a “runner” or an (god help us) IRONMAN.  That I “left that legacy” to my survivors means….what? “Nothing” you say? Absolutely right!

So why do I hear again and again (usually reading FB statements or comments on someone’s BLAHg about their latest “accomplishment” with a 5k, 10k, half-mary, marathon, or (god help us) IRONMAN, that they are building a “legacy” for their children.  What?  Please someone tell me what that means!

I have competed in and completed many events- from 10ks or ultras, from sprints to Ironman. Is that what my family loves me for?  Hardly. Is that what my co-workers appreciate me for? Most if many have no idea about my “life outside of work”.  My co-workers want me to be a team player, be succinct in the directions I give them, knowing that I will rise to any occasion and jump in with both feet when a challenge occurs (which is daily in my line of teaching special needs kiddos). My family simply wants me to BE THERE. They could care less about my swimming, cycling, running and other sports that I am interested in. Has an active lifestyle “rubbed off” on those around me?  Somewhat. Being a good role model helps.  But I never pushed it on anyone. I backed way off after entering a 5k with my daughter 20 years ago when after running a mile she stopped and in tears proclaimed that she “hated running”. That’s the last time I did anything like that. She found her own passions physically and spiritually. And guess what, she runs occasionally.

The ex-husband that switched from being active with me early on in our relationship, back to his “real” self of being a smoker, carouser, couch-potato. Well, note the EX….can’t live with someone like that. He was who he was and lied to me too many times.

If you DO have a headstone…do you real want the M-DOT on it after you are gone?  I bet some will, would, or have….

What will your OBIT say?  Ponder that.