Her Strength, an opening.

I recently asked our community for some words or thoughts about their word of the year for 2016. I wanted to see how people were using their WOTY in daily life.. I want our community voices heard in our newsletters and blogs, the honest truth telling from our lives. the GOOD STUFF and the HARD STUFF- I truly believe through storytelling and sharing ourselves, we heal, we help, we hold each other.

A few years ago, I met Michelle and thought she was funny and smart and thoughtful. I have really had a chance to get to know her over the past few years and I am grateful she is in my life. She is open to learning new things, and while she ( like we all do) experiences hard things.. she is also incredibly open and honest and trying HER best to live a great life NOW… Read on. THANK YOU MICHELLE!

 It’s One or The Other by Michelle Scheumann

 Strength. I want it. At least I hope I do. Strength is my word of the year for 2016. I’m putting it out into the universe to insight internal change for my self. It’s embarrassing to admit but I lack the physical strength to live the amazingly fortunate life I’ve been gifted without paying the high price of exhaustion and or illness that often follow most my adventures, travel and endeavors. This has become much more apparent to me as I age. I do know the best way to pay tribute to the life you’ve been given is to live your best life possible. Make IT count whatever that “IT”might be. If I Sign up & I show up. Put your best foot forward. Trust me, I get it and how important it is to be and more importantly feel strong in my body. I can talk the talk but don’t walk the walk. I don’t do it. It’s not that I can’t do it. I just hate to work out. What I’ve noticed at almost 50 is I’m far less able to play the fake it ‘till I make it game. Life can wipe me out. Mentally and physically. And the cherry on top is I am well aware I already have a sensitive/ frail constitution. It’s how I’m wired.  It’s not a new revelation but I’ve slowly been realizing I’m missing out on so many things. I’m missing out on my own life. I don’t have FOMO {Fear of Missing Out]. I’m actually missing out on opportunities which present themselves that I have to decline or skip because I’m overwrought and just too tired from the last round of something I chose to do. I can always plow through but it often leaves me in a weeping heap on the hardwood floor weak and wiped out. And I’m back in recovery mode which may take days.  I am currently not the best version of myself. It feels as if  I’m watching my life on the big screen and “I’m not the leading lady of my own life” [ as stated by  Kate Winslet in the movie “The Holiday”].  I need an upgraded app. A Michelle 2.0. reboot but I don’t possess the necessary software. It can’t be purchased or negotiated or faked. It must be earned through hard work, consistency and determination. I’m going to need to work for my better version. My STRONG/ CAPABLE self. This makes me say….ICK!

     I’m not in shape. I never really have been.  Why? Because I hate to work out. I always have. Perhaps always will. It’s a conundrum of sorts as it’s like having access to medicine you know will help you but you don’t take it.  I am a pro at avoiding anything I don’t want to do. Thus far, I have been able to muddle through my life activities even though it’s at a cost. So I can listen to Jane Fonda on NPR talk about the importance of fitness in the aging process, read Thomas Jefferson’s letter to Peter Carr, & watch Diane Nyad’s Ted Talk all with the underlying message [one which I already know] of the importance of maintaining a  strong body which leads to a strong mind, resiliency, mental acuity and an overall richer life. Don’t I want a richer/stronger life for my second act at this one life? It comes down to me. I have to do the work and this is the work that must be done. A quote from a recent Liz Gilbert talk is playing over and over in my mind. “What is it you REALLY WANT? I mean REALLY, REALLY WANT? And WHAT are you willing to give up to get it?” It’s one or the other. I can’t have the thing I say I want and remain the same. I have to make the change. It’s scary to acknowledge I want something different. What if I don’t succeed?  It’s way out of my comfort zone even though I know it’s the healthier choice. Change is always hard. I look over on my bedside table and read the cover of my 2016 Desire Map planner from Danielle LaPorte that basically says the same thing as Liz Gilbert . A daily reminder….”WHAT I WILL DO TO FEEL THE WAY I WANT TO FEEL”….The message is ALL AROUND ME.  I pause. What will I do? What will I give up to achieve my goal of strength? Can I do it? More importantly, am I willing to make the change? I don’t know but I’m sure going to try. Then I hear Anais Nin in my head “And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” So I imagine the risks and rewards. I’m choosing to start my strength journey because “You can’t be committed to your bullshit and to your growth. It’s one or the other.” I think I’ll try other for a while.”


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