Thursday, September 27, 2012

Aloha.....and mahalo

The universe told me this morning that without a doubt, on this golden day, amid my dancing manifestations in a perfect world on an emerald planet while my heart beats, my blood flows, and angels peer over my shoulder, that I just might be the *luckiest* person alive.

I believe it.

One more day until I leave for Hawaii, and the sun is still gloriously shining in Vancouver. What a summer it has been. I truly feel that I have been blessed with the spirit of aloha.

The term “aloha” means more than hello, and there is really no other word that describes it.  You can feel what it means, but it is bigger than any description.   The term comes from “alo”, which means presence, and “ha", meaning breath - the literal meaning of the term is therefore “the presence of breath” or “the breath of life”. Aloha is positive energy, living in harmony, affection, peace and compassion.

I feel blessed that my heart beats and the sweat drips.

I feel blessed for the sunshine that has uplifted my spirit and made training in September a pleasure.

But most of all, I feel blessed for the incredible people who surround me and share with me their passion, inspiration and compassion.

….the lovely friend left me a treat in my gym bag at the pool. Notwithstanding that anything that conjures up visions of food is particularly motivating these days, I was truly touched.

….the friends who joined me on Saturday to partake in four hours of hard bike intervals. That is serious inspiration, serious dedication and serious positivity. 

...the friends who, amidst their incredibly busy lives, have still had the time to spend with me, listen to me, and from time to time, talk down that little devil that sometimes sits on my shoulders.

…the girls who suffered along with me on my crazy Sunday brick run. It was hands down the hardest workout I have ever done – and yet, the two of them hung in for 51 laps of UBC track, smiles on their faces until the end. There is an unexplained joy in that feeling of accomplishment together.  (I will admit that the smiling may have been caffeine-induced delerium...but it did feel pretty good.)

…the colleague who called me last night to wish me luck, and to tell me that I inspired him to wake at 5am for a run workout.

…the friend who selflessly offered me a ride to the airport at 5pm on a Friday night (because no one ever really wants to drive to Richmond in Friday afternoon traffic). 

I love you all, and have such incredible gratitude for you.  Mahalo.

The flip flops, lycra, sunscreen and bike are packed.  Trepidation and anxiety are waiting in the wings, but I have no intention of packing them along for the trip.  My belief that anything you dream is possible is still well in hand. 

Yes, I may just be the luckiest person alive.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Letting go.

“Frustration and love cannot exist in the same place at the same time, so get real and start doing what you would rather be doing in life.  Love your life.  All of it.  Even the heavy shit that happened to you when you were 8.  All of it was and IS perfect.”  - Jason Mraz

Having ten months to train for Kona seemed like a luxury, but now with just over a month to go, the long days of training are back.  Eat, sleep, work, train, rinse, repeat.  

I love it and I hate it in equal parts.  Only an endurance athlete could explain why.

The last few months have been a roller coaster ride.  And not a fun, Disney-style ride but at times a heart-stopping, grueling, take-my-breath-away-with-trepidation kind of ride.

I have learned a lot on this journey about myself, about others, and most of all, about the truth.  And the latter, well, suffice it to say that it is not always obvious.

While I can easily say that 2012 has not been the year of my dreams thus far, it has been of my making.  I chose it.  I do not regret it.  It was perfect. 

A reflection of the 2012 that has been thus far and the lessons I have learned....

Life may not always be easy, but it will get better.  Things happen for a reason.  It is not always clear at the time, particularly in those instances where I have been so paralyzed with emotion that I cannot even react, but every experience means something.  And in those moments when things are so terribly wrong, those dark moments, there is comfort in knowing that a wrong turn will eventually turn right.  And, if all else fails, there is always ice cream.

Regret not.  Don't tell me you feel sorry.  I'm not.  Every sweet (and sour!) detail add up to make me who I am.

Detractors deserve no place.  People who bring me down or are unwilling (or unable) to support my dreams are not worth my time.  I totally understand why not everyone shares my goals, and I respect that.  But I will not tolerate being belittled - if I am less than perfect to you, so be it.  I will *learn* not to let you upset me, because after all, it is not me you are unhappy with.  

Be a better judge of character, and never sink to it.  You can tell how someone will treat you by the way they treat animals.  I am absolutely convinced of it.  They treat their mother, their spouse and their friends the exact same way.

It may hurt, but never stop feeling.   Bruises, broken hearts, athletic injuries – no one wants them, no one deserves them, but they do happen and eventually they do heal.  Feeling makes me human.  And, as with training, taking the time to recover makes me stronger, tougher and more resilient.

Anything is possible.  Cannot is not a term that rests well with me.  You bet I can.

Breathe.  Everything is easier with a bit of oxygen (and the occasional nap).

And so, for the remainder of 2012.... 
I will love, share, sweat, forgive, dream, laugh and cuddle.
I will challenge myself, and challenge those in my life to be up for it.
I will go to bed at 8pm if I feel like it.
I will eat cereal for dinner if I feel like it.
I will live aloha (September 28th!!!)
I will be true to myself.
I will be unrelenting in living the life of my dreams.    

It will be perfect.