The etched glass on the side of the Goat Hill Parking Garage beckoned the third time the car cruised down fifth avenue. The original plan had been to take the bus. It would stop right in front of the courthouse and be easy steps up to the Council chambers.
But this was not a day I had four hours to spend downtown waiting for the return bus. In deference to the injured back and leg that makes me walk with a substantial cane, I checked to make sure I had the $20 for parking and headed on the ferry with the car.
The walk down the hill and over to the proper building was going to be a killer. But I had signed up for Shape Up Vashon as an individual to prove a person doesn’t have to be able bodied to get fit. Time to suck it up and do it.
Doing difficult is both an art and a science. It takes every ounce of creativity and physiological care.
The art part is seeing your goal as a vision in its entirety with no oppressive thought of the process of achieving that goal. The science part is deconstructing the total into parts and doing only enough to get you to the next step. Build on the small.
The art part of the science part is to keep your spirit distracted with encouraging assessments of reality while executing minutiae.
Walking with a cane, especially a four toed, is like running a three legged race. Rhythm is everything. Like triplets running over a steady bass beat, the month’s events washed through the details of step,lean/step,lift.
This past month I learned everything I’d been up against for the last twenty years. Difficult is easier when you don’t know what you’re up against. God was right, though. I was strong enough to handle it now. So, a series of relationships, and falsehoods, and alliances meant to discredit me and prevent my witness to Joy and Hope and the healing power of feeling pain without sedation heavier than chocolate and a good book or movie , was revealed.
The Joy of being free, of being fully alive washed over me. Step,lean/step, lift.
Are you honest about your weaknesses and faults or do you try to cover them up? I am not ashamed of me. Rid yourself of shame. Heal don’t cover up. Then you can truly like yourself.
Descending, descending, descending. Pulling back my center of gravity lest I pitch forward. I can feel the moisture my face wears from the effort.
Victories flood my panorama of reflection. Someone doesn’t do their job. God opens a door instead of a window. People who’ve loved me do roll call as I hit the first level plot of ground. Two more descents to go.
How many times have people told me ‘This is your year’. There is only one thing I don’t have...money. If you can be poor and live without money, you can do anything. The plus is knowing your friends don’t like you for your money, but for who you are and how your being alive blesses them.
Two hours later I had not only finished the descent but been officially confirmed as an advocate for people who are developmentally disabled and climbed back up the hill.
Sometimes freedom is knowing, by God’s grace and strength, you can survive difficult on your way to Joy and happiness.