I turned 40 this month.
I’m relatively sure that I was 20 just a few days ago. And even though time seems to move too quickly, I wouldn’t go back. At each turning of the age clock, I have celebrated and moved forward. I really do not wish for days gone by–moments maybe–but not entire days.
Celebrating 40 years has caused me to reflect and recognize a few things about my life and me.
And life is good.
Ryan and I are able to provide for our family, and we are comfortable. We don’t have everything, but we have more than enough to be satisfied.
We have a house that we call home. Our children are healthy and have access to a good education. We both work at jobs we enjoy. Our pantry and freezer could feed us for an extended amount of time. As cold as the past winter was, we were always warm and secure.
Over the past few years, I’ve had the opportunity to travel to other countries and meet people who live in very different circumstances from my own. Many of these men, women and children were missing out on one or all of the above.
We have been working to bring B home and into our family since 2012. And we are finally seeing progress that makes us believe he will be home within the next year.
My time of reflection of my life has caused me to reflect on B’s life. I’ve tried to put myself in the shoes of this almost 16 year-old boy who will soon be joining us.
It is easy to think of all the things he will gain–his siblings, more siblings, a mom and dad, a large extended family, new friends, access to food at any time, appropriate medications, a furthered education, and the list goes on. But he will also have to let go of many things in order to move forward. He will leave the only country he has ever known. He will leave his grandmother, his aunt, his cousins, his friends, his home, his language, his culture. He is going to be uncomfortable. Daily. Hourly. Perhaps even minute to minute in the beginning.
And I’ve come to realize that even though I’m grateful to be comfortable, I may benefit from being uncomfortable.
This need brings me to a commitment I have made. I’m running. That’s right.
Those of you that know me well know that this is not a normal activity. You may even think this is a joke, but it’s not.
I first gave running a go last summer. I worked my way through the couch to 5K plan and when I ran a mile it felt like a huge accomplishment, because in all my years I had never run an entire mile.
I completed the plan and walked/ran in two 5Ks. I didn’t really enjoy it. I loved crossing the finish line, but the training was hard and I was mostly out of my comfort zone trying to complete the plan.
So this year I’ve decided to continue on the path of stretching—literally and figuratively.
I’ve committed to running a 5K and a half marathon in September.
This makes me uncomfortable.
I am not a runner. It is not something that comes easily to me. Some people have this on their bucket list of things to try or to accomplish. I am not one of those people.
And I’m doing something uncomfortable to better understand the term. To remind myself that people push through discomfort every day and choose to see joy. They choose determination, effort, and to simply do the work that needs to be done.
B will need to push through uncomfortable to be at home here.
The 5K will be run for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. I have walked this 5K the past five years with my family in memory of my cousin Josh who battled CF his entire life.
The half marathon will be run for Project Hopeful. They are a non-profit organization that educates, encourages, and enables families and individuals to advocate for and adopt children with HIV/AIDS and other special needs.
I would love it if you joined me. Yes. You.
Please considering running or walking or running and walking with me. I’m happy to share more information with you.
I’ve also committed to raising $400 for each of these life-changing and in some instances life-giving organizations.
If you feel led to support my run you may donate to CF here or to Project Hopeful here.
I promise to update along my uncomfortable way.