If you are a woman, you know how as a girl, you always wanted those diaries at the store? You know, those pink and purple ones that had that lock with them. Some actually already had the days marked so that you could capture your every memory and dream. Or...so that they could taunt you, and make you feel guilty, and insufficient for not putting an entry in every day. Just Me---Oh Well-- I always did have an overeager sense of guilt.
I mention it, because I tried to start a blog once before. Just like those diaries and journals, I started with such eagerness and excitement, then it started to taper, than wandered, than waned, than expired.... I looked back at it this weekend. It was on the weight watchers site. I started it as I started my journey to the 2011 Disney Princess 1/2 Marathon. I had a grand total of eight entries. Most were about how many points I had eaten, or had left to eat....guess you can tell where my focus was. Occasionally, I did have something to say that stands the test of time (all 22 months of it). I have taken the best of those eight entries and come up with what follows. Sometimes it is good to look back to go forward....
I had forgotten that I broke into tears when I registered for the 2011 Disney Princess Half Marathon. I am not big on crying--someone would've given me something to cry about--but I cried, not because I was happy, but because I was forcing me to have confidence in myself, and it was very uncomfortable. Early forties-successful job, beautiful family, and hidden low self-confidence---yeah, that sounds about right. But in this journey, I have found surprising doses of wild joy.
One night while walking/loping near the house, the kids and dog had gone with me. At some point, they complained that I was going too fast for them, (I know, right!), the sun was in their eyes, it was hot, etc..., anyway, my husband drove the mile and picked them up. As the door to the van was closing, my daughter shouted, "I believe in you, Mommy!" She was 6 or 7 at the time. That was a big moment for me. She believed in me....I didn't believe in myself, but she did. At that moment, I could have run a marathon.
One afternoon, while walking/loping with my son, he asked if we could talk. I said, sure...I now know this is the precursor to opening a Pandora's box of sorts. He next told me how a classmate had told him that if you believed in dinosaurs, you could not believe in God. "Because... the Bible said, God created the Heavens and the Earth in seven days and never mentioned dinosaurs." He was torn up about this one, because he had seen the fossils--One of the benefits of walking briskly is that you are already breathing deeply, and therefore are given a second or two of leeway for brief prayer.
Out of nowhere, I began to talk about how on different planets the days are different lengths--he already knew this concept--Pluto was still a planet at that point. I reasoned that although our days are 24 hours, we don't know how long God's days are, and that when animals first appeared it was the day before Adam and Eve, so it could be that both were right. The Bible is right, AND dinosaurs were around, obviously, because we have the fossilized skeletons, but they were extinct before Adam and Eve got sorted. We had a great discussion about how some of the greatest minds of science are also great men of faith and that the two are not exclusive but inclusive. It must have been the oxygen, because I am not normally this smart/quick. REALLY, not when it comes to science.
This is not the kind of conversation that I could totally concentrate on in the car, or that he would be willing to bring up at dinner-because then it would be a family free for all. These days, these are the types of discussions that are best saved for long walks/runs with Mom. Now though, I get ready, when he says, "can we talk?"
Just like when I was a little girl, I am looking at this blog kind of like that diary with the little heart lock on it, except now, I hope that others read it and get encouragement from it. Maybe it will be a friend or stranger, or my kids someday...who knows it may be just me, in a few months, when I have forgotten some tidbit that seems unforgettable now. In any case, there is joy, both in the experience and the memory.