Last night at book club, a friend commented positively about my Runkeeper status updates on Facebook. Since I started training in earnest for our upcoming Women’s 4 Miler, I have been using the app to keep track of my time/distances throughout the week. It’s also a good way for me to get some much needed encouragement when friends like the update or leave me positive comments…especially since that is apparently too hard for me to do myself:
I replied to her, “Yeah, I’m doing the 4 Miler in a couple weeks.” And then, inexplicably, I added what I ALWAYS seem to add: the disclaimer, “But I’m walking, you know, not running.”
I am off the couch. I am moving my body on a regular basis. I’m working on my word for the year. I am hitting new goals and achieving things I never before had interest in.
Yet I minimize this to others.
My response echoed other responses to similar comments in recent months. I immediately qualify my comments whenever I tell someone I’m doing the 4 Miler or even when they comment on the Runkeeper updates, like I am less because I’m not running. I don’t THINK I think I’m less but my need to explain, to clarify, points differently.
This seems to be the theme of the week, actually. A few gals from church and I are working through Ann Voskamp’s 1000 Gifts right now; this week’s take away for me was specific to giving ourselves a break – extending ourselves grace as easily as we might to another. If a friend responded to me as I did to mine last night, I would have been quick to encourage her, to tell her that it is awesome that she is walking and remind her how many folks are sitting at home watching tv while she is out there training. But yet it is exceedingly hard for me to do that for myself.
I know I’m not unique in this; so many women in my life would never speak to a friend the way they speak to themselves. They’d never be as discouraging or as hard on a beloved friend as they are to themselves. So why are we to ourselves? If we move forward and try our best every day, to be a little bit better, stronger, kinder, more joyful than the day before, shouldn’t that be enough? Admitting when we fail, fall back or struggle but not letting that define us, shouldn’t that be enough?
Shouldn’t we, each of us individually, strong, unique, beautiful and wow, be enough?