Friday, June 29, 2007

inspirational story

By Jill Koenig

That first 10k race was quite an experience. I jogged, I walked, I jogged and I walked. At times, I didn't know if I could finish. Then came a defining moment.

At one point near the end, a 70 year old man ran past me, very very fast, and I felt embarrassed that I was 50+ years younger than he and I couldn't even keep up with him. I felt defeated for a second. But then I realized something. He was running his race and I was running mine.

He had different capacities, experience, training and goals for himself. I had mine. Remember my goal was merely to finish.

How often in life do we compare ourselves to others and feel disappointed in ourselves when we really shouldn't? After a minute, it hit me that this was a lesson I could draw from. I learned something about myself in that moment. I turned my embarrassment into inspiration.

I decided that I would not give up on running races, in fact, I would run even more races and I would learn how to train and prepare properly and one day I would be one of those 70 year olds who was still running. As I crossed the finish line, I was proud of my accomplishment.


Oh, I know, I know, I KNOW!!! It is one of those cheesy, sappy stories with a moral. I hate them too!

Stretch yourself just a bit and look beyond the sappy and see that she does make an excellent point. How often do we go through our lives comparing it to what others have? And not just the neighbor next door's brand new car. Or the cousin who inherits great grandma's house. How often do you watch the news and think, "For crying out loud, if I had Paris Hilton's money there's no way I'd parade around like a 2 bit whore. If I had that kind of money I could.......!"

The desire to have more, to be more, to even do more, is not a bad thing. That dissatisfaction with your own status quo can become a burning drive to reinvent yourself.

The cautionary part of this post is more of a reminder to me that I need to also find satisfaction in where I am now. The life I have is pretty damn good and comparing it to other people's lives or even more importantly- comparing it to the life I COULD have had is a silly waste of time. I need to find the joy in the now.

Oh crap, I did it again. The Starbucks thing. Just shoot me now. :-D

10 comments:

Poodles Rule said...

You need to leave the coffee alone...
:P

Fiery Ewok said...

lol you're right. Caffeine makes me paranoid- BAD!

But I do worry about turning into one of their awful "quotes" on the side of their cups.

Russ said...

Why worry about turning into one of their awful "quotes" on the side of their cups, FE? I think a lot of those quotes are so good that I wish I'd have made them up myself. But "wish" is the extent of it since the only way I could have invented an Edison quote is if I had been Edison; same for Maya Angelou, Gandhi, or Fred Flintstone.

I really do like a lot of the ideas expressed in those cup-side quotes. It's too bad they are so abused and overused.

Fiery Ewok, you said, "Oh, I know, I know, I KNOW!!! It is one of those cheesy, sappy stories with a moral. I hate them too!" Now, I don't believe for an instant that you hate 'em. Even if they are sappy and Aesoppy, from some of your other posts, I sense you have a soft spot for schmaltzy bits. Come on, now, admit it, fess up.

Fiery Ewok said...

*sigh*

I am sooooo busted.

Ok. SOMETIMES I like the stories. Espcially the ones that challenge me to take a second look at my life, or the ones that make me think. I like those kind.

The ones that actually do make me mad are the Chicken Soup books. The ones where the stories are designed to make you cry. I hate the emotional manipulation.

And I guess saying I was turning into a Starbucks cup was a way of apologizing for sounding cheezy. I suppose if it comes across as genuine and then a person apologizes for that it sends mixed signals. Yes?

Fiery Ewok said...

Schmaltzy. SCHMALTZY! ME????

Well, yeah. I suppose. But only in a good way. :-)

Russ said...

Yeah, those gagworthy Chicken Soup books exemplify that "abused and overused" I mentioned before. It's too much densely-packed schmaltz, way too concentrated. You know, FE, they remind me of rabbit turds. If you see one rabbit turd by itself, it might arouse your curiosity. From a distance you might not be quite sure exactly what it is, but, if you want to put in the effort, on closer inspection you can see it for what is really is - a turd. If, however, you amass a pile of those stinky little things all in one place like one of those icky anthologies mounds up the schmaltz - "Chicken Soup for the Morbidly Obese Cross-Dressing Long-Haul Trucker's Big-Ass Soul," for instance - then, even from afar you can tell its true nature; it's a pile of crap.

If you exceed the recommended dosage, I bet they cause brain damage. A little manic-depressive episode anybody?

Fiery Ewok said...

Chicken Soup for the Morbidly Obese Cross-Dressing Long-Haul Trucker's Big-Ass Soul,"

They still had a few copies of that left the last time I was at Barnes & Noble. :-D

Love the rabbit turd analogy-

Russ said...

"I need to find the joy in the now."
Oooooh...ooooo...ummmmm.

"I need to find the joy in the now."
Oooooh...ooooo...ummmmm.

"I need to find the joy in the now."
Oooooh...ooooo...ummmmm.

Oh, by the way, in my last comment, I used the phrase, "If you exceed the recommended dosage." The way I wrote it, I'm pretty sure it means "recommended dosage of rabbit turds." Ooops, my a poopy-head. It's sposed ta mean, "recommended dosage of Chicken Soup books." Damn, first mistake in 45 years. It's a good thing I actually read this post.

"I need to find the joy in the now."
Oooooh...ooooo...ummmmm.

"I need to find the joy in the now."
Oooooh...ooooo...ummmmm.

"I need to find the joy in the now."
Oooooh...ooooo...ummmmm.

Fiery Ewok said...

Upon further examination of the comment in question, it has been determined that the original intent was indeed a reference to Chicken Soup and not to rabbit turds.

If you will note the paragraph in question begins with a discussion of Chicken Soup and only mentions rabbits turds in an analogous context.

The overdose thus mentioned in the conclusion clearly refers to the aforementioned Chicken Soup books.

Fiery offers to hold Russ and console him for his first mistake in 45 years: which was being wrong about having made a mistake in the first place.

Sean the Blogonaut F.C.D. said...

I am kinda liking the Starbucks moments.