Monday, December 7, 2015

Free at last

Something very exciting is happening this week.

I've been counting down the days and circling this date in red on my calendar.

The waiting and watching and wishing is almost finally over!

Drumroll please...

My six month Boot Camp gym membership expires this Friday!!!!

(Fireworks! Trumpets! A chorus of Hallelujahs!)

If that isn't enough to bust out some Martina McBride and sing Let Freedom Ring at the top of your lungs, I don't know what is.

The relief is palpable.

I want to be clear, a lot of people really like this gym. I liked this first. I wouldn't want anyone to not check out this gym because of my personal feelings. It's just... I realized after a few months of it, it's simply not for me.

It's not the exercise, don't get me wrong. I have been very committed to exercise in various forms for over two decades. I actually like to be active and feel healthy and fit. I have not stopped exercising since my attendance at this class progressively dwindled down to zero. I have just gone back to methods of working out that I know work better for me. Because you see, this class taught me something very important.

At forty-five-almost-forty-six there are some things I am not willing accept anymore in the name of fitness.

They are, in no particular order:

1. Burpees.

2. Sprinting up hills.

3. Burpees.

4. Push-ups on street corners.

5. Burpees.

6. Running outside.

7. Burpees.

8. Running, period (for any distance beyond the width of a tennis court).

9. Burpees.

10. Being scolded for talking too much to my friend because we are affecting the "focus" of others when the music is at approximately a gazillion decibels and no one can hear anything beyond a two foot radius. (Eye roll).

11. Burpees

I think by now you have picked up on my main hot button issue. Because the truth is, I would have probably stuck with it even with #'s 2, 6, 8 and 10 But #'s 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 9, and 11 are non-negotiables.

There is really no greater indignity than the physical act of burpees. I will do planks, mountain climbers, push ups (just not on street corners), or squats until the cows come home (which could take a long time since I don't have any cows).

But burpees....shudder. 

Tell me to do 10 burpees in a row and you are risking eliciting something really scary from me. Like an icy stare. Or a dramatic sigh. Or visibly slumped shoulders and tears in my eyes. (I don't have much of a "scary" repertoire. Passive-aggressive is about all I can muster).

Still, it isn't pretty. Nor is me doing burpees.

So, that's it. My burpee days are done. And as God as my witness, I will never perform another burpee as long as I live. Even if I were to join some other class or gym or suddenly enlist in the military... I swear on Buddy the Elf himself that I will simply say, "No", should someone ever again try to tell me to hit the floor and crank out some burpees.

And if I have to, I'll top that off with a, "You can't make me."

'Cause you can't.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Silent night

I have an issue...

Okay, I have many issues being human and all. But this is a biggie for me, maybe it is for you too?

I have this tendency to get sucked into things that aren't mine to own. Other people's anger, fear, arguments, worries, and even their conflict. It's kind of  my own personal oxymoron because for the most part I studiously avoid conflict, but when confronted with it- even if I DO nothing about it and don't participate in it- it will still eat away at me.

Seriously, an argument between two other people, utterly and completely separate from me, will bother me enough to keep me up at night. And you do not even want to know what I'm like if I was actually involved in anyway...

Yeah, I'm working on it.

Admitting you have a problem is the first step, right?

But this issue is why the verse in my devotional JUMPED OUT AT ME this morning. And honestly, this is a verse I have heard or read literally hundreds of times in my lifetime. Why did I see it in such a different light today? Probably because I needed it so much.

All that changed from the hundreds of times I have read it before was one word.

One overlooked word that made all the difference today.

One little word.

A word that when said in isolation in any elementary classroom will make all of the children giggle.


"But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart." Luke 2:19


That one word suggests Mary made a choice that countered in some way the reactions of those around her.


Instead... Rather than... In contrast... Despite that... Whereas... Even so...

Whatever chaos, or excitement, or confusion, or general hoopla was swirling around her... Mary opted for silence. She chose to be still. She took time to listen to the voice in her heart.

She didn't react, she responded from the deepest, truest part of her soul.

And her response was to be quiet.

It wasn't cowardly inaction. It wasn't a failure to DO SOMETHING.

It was wisdom in its purest form.

And something tells me that what she gained by doing "nothing"...was peace.

Let it be so.