Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Sheer will

I had no idea what those words meant until now because that is what it takes every time I have to do anything -- sheer will! I remember in my running days I just mustered any strength I had to finish a race or the inner competitor who kept saying, "you can absolutely finish!!!". If one knew one's inner competitor before, one can find it again and make it's role more in line with where you are now. Make sense? Sure... it's not hard to understand at least for me.

Let me take you on a journey of my morning and the next time I will take you along for my day. This will be fun, promise -- and instructive I hope.

My mental & physical treadmill
These stairs are what I consider my mental and physical exercise machine, all 11 of them. They lie between most things I do. Come down to the kitchen first thing in the morning to begin my day, go up to my study to do some work, come down to shower and have lunch, go back up to work some more then come down for the evening. Honestly, on some days it is not that organized. In between I come downstairs to walk outside to check the mail, look at my flowers, make coffee, have a snack etc. 

Why should anyone care about my morning activity? Remember my blog about human occupation and working? If you don't that is fine, it's just that this is part of what I do. Also, sometimes I lower a basket of laundry down the stairs with a rope and then some more stairs to the basement to wash. Does all this take energy? Oh my goodness, yes. And as if this isn't enough, I sometimes want to take a cup of coffee upstairs to drink while I work. 

It is not easy for me to climb. I have foot drop and spasticity in my left leg -- so not only is my foot paralyzed, my leg doesn't bend!! What a dilemma. This is where sheer will comes in. Every step is a challenge but thinking I can...thinking I can makes it happen just like when I ran the 400 meter relay ready to pass the baton to a team mate. Except here the baton is internal because I just have to get from point A to B to do my business. So, the job doesn't have to be perfect, I don't have to win, I just have to get there.

I know I said a lot of things but basically, this is how I organize my morning: I come down that treadmill, have breakfast with David, wash up, listen to some news, have my coffee and then get ready to bring a cup up to do some of my own work. Fortunately there is a bathroom on either end of the treadmill, i.e. stairs. I shut out the world, concentrate on what I have to do upstairs -- anything from making a bed to paying a bill online. Then I can hear the mail lady about an hour and a half later. This is my signal to tear myself away from my computer. Now it's down the treadmill -- a little easier than coming up -- collect myself for a bumpy walk to the mailbox (we live in the country). This is almost like that relay but at my own speed! I read the mail, listen to some more news and if the laundry is done (if I did it that day), I carefully bring it upstairs -- step by step -- basket up a step, take a step and basket up again -- just like the coffee. Sometimes, I bring the coffee up too if I am feeling ambitious.

I deal with hanging up the laundry, work a little more, put on my robe and head down for a shower. I come back up to do some more work or chores. I feel pretty accomplished at this point. I have read the NY times, communicated with the world, taken my shower, had my exercise and am ready for the afternoon. Oh, I think I just heard the mail lady's car. Time for my walk!

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