Motion Brought Me Here

Today I am grateful for a roof that keeps us dry in a thunderstorm and for an umbrella that keeps me dry when walking Oliver. I am grateful for the rain, which our grass and plants needed.

As I thought about yesterday's post and the idea that motion creates emotions, I kept returning to the picture of my parents that was popping up. There's a glitch I haven't figured out as to why it comes up. It is from a previous post. But then again, there can be other reasons why it has been showing up.

My mom is on my mind regularly, as her memory declines and her world seems to get smaller and smaller. I pray daily for her peace and comfort. It will be 20 years ago this October that my dad passed away.

Both of my parents have also been people in motion, like me. Dad wasn't one to take walks like Mom, but they both actively moved much of their days for decades, working the farm, tending the garden, doing laundry, feeding all of us.

Neither of my parents talked much about their fee…

Motion Creates Emotion

Today I am grateful for my physical capabilities and my five senses. I deeply appreciate how together they allow me to take in nature and get fresh air and exercise.

Runner's World is a magazine we still receive in print, and each issue gets our attention. We appreciate the variety of coverage, and always find some useful or affirming information. We also come across inspiration from other runners.  One of the publication's regular features is "I'm a Runner" on the back page. It highlights someone known for other reasons, but who is also a runner.

The recent edition spotlighted Derek Hough, who I was not familiar with. He is an Emmy-winning dancer and choreographer, known for his work on Dancing with the Stars and World of Dance. In the article, he says he uses this expression a lot:
"Motion creates emotion." 
I had never heard it put that way before, but it really nails it. And so much of it is positive emotion.  Healthy processing and release, sweated o…

The Work of Choice

Today I am grateful for my joint health and muscle strength and the exercises that help maintain them. I am also grateful for some recliner time this morning and the view I am enjoying.

The commencement address given by the senior class president at my nephew's graduation on Sunday was a good effort with a worthwhile message. It was all about perception, about how we choose to look at life and what happens to us. About how we handle life when life isn't going exactly the way we would like it.

Somewhere in his speech, this young man mentioned "the work of choice."  That struck me and got me thinking. Yes, choice takes work, effort, risks. We have many choices each and every day, throughout the day. Sometimes choosing to do something is the healthiest route, sometimes choosing not to is healthier.

Together these choices define our actions and our thoughts and these create our perceptions. Are we seeing the world as hostile, unfair, tedious?  Or are we seeing the world …

Just Keep Going

Today I am grateful for the many safe road miles traveled this weekend and for the excitement and energy of several activities that went on in the last few days. I am especially grateful for all of the family members that were able to gather together at some of these activities.

Special congratulations to Brennan, our nephew, on his high school graduation. Also to Brennan and our niece Ellie, and their track team, who all did an outstanding job at Drake Stadium. What a treat to watch in person.

Just keep going. I saw many examples of this play out this weekend, in a variety of ways. From my sister Mary Jo, slowed by cancer and treatment, walking up a hill. She paused when needed, then just kept going. She gets up each day and just keeps going. She is feeling better, knowing hope.

Just keep going. I saw it at the Iowa high school track and field state meet. From hurdlers who fell and got back up, to injured runners who walked to the finish line to earn team points and finish what they …

Starting Lines and Finishing Lines

Today I am grateful for my morning coffee, and for excitement and anticipation for some upcoming events.

Starting lines and finishing lines are on my mind today. I am thinking about track and field meets and the start and finish lines that are the source of much energy and excitement. Our niece and nephew will be running at the Iowa State Track and Field Meet at the storied Drake Stadium in Des Moines over this weekend.  Wishing them and their teammates the best of luck and a wonderful experience.

Then there are the numerous marathons, half-marathons, 10Ks, 5Ks and other road races I have started and finished. Joining 40,000 at the start of the Chicago Marathon was amazing, as was crossing that first marathon finish line. Running has meant so much to me for 40 years. It is a deep source of blessings and one of the best ways I live gratefully. Onward, a stride at a time!

There are other start and finish lines, more figurative in ways. It is nearly ten years ago that I hit the starting …

About Those Windows

Today I am grateful for the peace that comes in silence. I am also grateful for the colorful and sweet smelling blossoms we are being treated to on neighborhood trees.

I thought about my window to the world yesterday as a busy day unfolded. What do we do when a car or room gets stuffy and uncomfortable? We open a window or two and let in some fresh air. I need to do the same in my mind. Pause. Stop the swirling brain.

Open the view back up to fully take in the present moment and the task in front of me. That is all.

I thought about how nice it was to need sunglasses on a bright day bursting with fresh green leaves and those colorful blossoms. The sunglasses allowed me a better, and safer view of the road in front of me, of runners at a track meet, and also of the river as I sat and talked with a recovery friend.

Today awaits, like a nice view from a spacious picture window. I am appreciating that fully right now as I sit on our patio, enjoying the sights and sounds of early morning. S…

Window Treatments

Today I am grateful for the ways people in recovery share a common language and a common hope. And for my sense of hearing, and the comfort of typical morning sounds I hear now.

I am also grateful for the various window treatments in our home. We have ones that are easy to close, others that are a little harder to get to. We have retractable blinds that give us a full window when we want it, and full closure when we want that.

I appreciate blinds and curtains as I wind down a day and darkness descends. Privacy feels safe, our house feels secure. And as a new day begins, I welcome the day and the new light by opening what I closed the night before.

This all brought thoughts of window treatments and how they could also mean how I am treating the view as seen from the window of my perception. Is my view closed or open? Am I seeing what is in front of me, or am I trapped in the drawn shades in the corners of my mind?

Opening and closing shades and curtains takes some effort. Keeping an op…