Monday, February 18, 2019
Always a water loving kid, I was in the ocean instantly whenever my family went to the beach. No standing on the shore for me! (There was no internet in those days; I'd never seen videos of sharks riding in the surf. I'd have been more cautious).
The fun thing was to stand in the water, about chest deep, watching for just the right wave. The waves rose up and came toward shore like walls, and they'd lift me and pass under me, or I'd lower my head and dive right through them, if they were not the Right Wave.
When the timing was just right, and the wave looked big enough, I'd stretch out as it lifted me, and let it carry me to the shore. Huge energy moved me over the sandy bottom with what seemed no effort on my part. Dropped lightly on the beach, I'd pop up and splash back out to do it again.
For every triumphant ride to the shore, though, I'd have 3 or 4 crashes. Timing not right, or the wave not as strong as it looked, or for whatever reason, instead of the water bearing me up, I'd be smashed down under the weight of it, and rolled along in the sand till I could find my feet again, sputtering and battered.
Being young and resilient, I still popped up and splashed back to try again.
Now, I said all that to say this: the sense of energy bearing me up, effortlessly carrying me towards my destination, is like the feeling of being on top with my diet and fitness program. When everything is right, I've caught some kind of cosmic wave. Choices are easy, will is strong, fitness feels natural - I just sail along! It's so wonderful.
Then the crash. Why? Who knows why? Hormones fluctuate, or company comes to visit, or I take the easiness for granted, assuming "I've got this!" - and SMASH! Back to rolling in the the grinding sand of disappointment, self reproach, failure.
So when I rise up sputtering and rubbing the sand from my face, I often sulk back to the beach where more sand grits and sticks to my wet skin and clothes as I miserably watch the waves marching towards the shore. Eventually I'll work up the energy to splash back out into the water, metaphorically speaking - which means eventually I'll gather my wits and will and try to find that wave of triumph again, for another wonderful easy time of sailing towards my goals.
I want to cut out that sulking on the beach time. I want to pop back up quick to seek the next wave like I did when I was a kid. Life is short! Let's grab that glorious feeling while we can!