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Monday, January 17, 2011

Make a choice...

Today the weather was beautiful for the first time in what seems like forever. I had the urge to get outside and move. To breathe. To feel the sun. To feel alive. I haven’t been exercising since Andie died but today I needed to run. I had the itch. I loaded the girls in the stroller and off we went. The sun was shining but it was still a chilly day. I wasn't able to run as far as I used to. My body hasn’t been use to that kind of abuse lately.

As I ran, Andie’s ring which is on a chain around my neck, bounced up and down on my chest, stinging my skin. The cold air burned my lungs and my chest tightened. My muscles tensed and strained with the weight of the girls. I wasn’t acclimated to the cool weather and it took a minute for my body to loosen up and give in to the pressure. I wondered if this was how he felt when we went running and he complained that he couldn’t catch his breath and his chest hurt. I push this thought from my mind. I push the girls up the next hill. I push myself to keep going. This moment is not about him, I tell myself. Every other moment of every other day is about him. But this moment, on this day is mine. Right now it is about me.

It’s about pushing myself to take my life back. To not be defined wholly by the fact that I am his widow. It's about living in the moment and accepting it for what it is. Not wishing it was something different. It's surrendering to the fact that I don’t know what tomorrow holds, or the next day, or the day after that- but it doesn’t really matter anyway. What matters is being present and engaged with my children, being true to myself, accepting the blessing of being alive- right now.

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about creating an acronym for my mantra…”push.” I’ve come up with many but none of them ring true to me. I tossed around…

Sometimes in life, Pretty Ugly Shit Happens (too pessimistic)
Persistence, Understanding, Survival, Hope (not bad, but still not the true essence of what push means to me)
Pain, Undone, Sadness, Heartache (blah, too depressing)
Prayer, Unity, Salvation, Healing (too sappy and idealistic)
And the list goes on and on...

The one that I keep coming back to time and time again because it conveys what push means to me in those moments when I have to push myself is:

“Perseverance Unleashed, Strength Harnessed”

Because for me, in the moments when I need a push it’s about unleashing the power within myself in order to persevere. It’s about harnessing emotional, physical, and spiritual strength to survive.

So today I made a choice. Today I pushed.


  1. I shared your idea of PUSH with a good friend. She also lost a child. You are helping us thorugh our grief. Thank you for shining HIS light so that we may also PUSH ourselves. Kerri

  2. Kerri,
    So glad I could be a little inspiration to you and your friend. I am humbled.