From the time I was 10 years old, I lived my life with one goal in mind. I wanted to “make it” in musical theatre. Of course when I was 10 this meant being on The B-way, and over time the meaning of “making it” has changed, and evolved into a much more realistic career path, but I have. I graduated college with my BFA in Musical Theatre (the ultimate goal for many many years), moved back home, and made a career in a field most people don’t even consider possible. I love my jobs. I also married the perfect man, bought a house I love near my family, and became a fur mom to the two greatest puppies that bring me a ridiculous amount of joy. I slowly checked almost every life goal off my list as I inched my way closer to my dream life. Not to say my life is perfect, because no one’s is, but it is, technically speaking, the life I always dreamed of.
I always assumed that as I checked more and more goals off my list, eventually this would lead me to a state of steady, unwavering happiness. Near perfection. Well, that’s silly. Regardless of how much I love my life (so much), what I’ve realized in the last year is that the thing that brings me the most happiness is a sense of personal accomplishment. There are hundreds of ways we all achieve that on a daily basis, and by far the most important is the accomplishment I get from having amazing relationships with family and friends. I am so lucky to be surrounded by the most amazing people, and to have so many lasting close friendships. However, I found as I settled into my “grown up life” post college, that I really missed the sense of accomplishment that came from those moments in voice lessons when Chris would shout at me “That was so good! Why would you not choose that all the time?!”, a phrase my students now hear all the time. 😉 Or a moment in acting class where I was able to let go, and connect in a new way without getting stuck inside my own head.
I LOVE learning, and I feel at my best when I am constantly growing and excelling at my passions. Adjusting to “real life” where I didn’t have teachers to impress, or classes to prepare for was quite a challenge for me. I am, of course, always working to improve my craft, and I believe that continuing to grow as an artist is imperative to being a good theatre artist, producing quality work, and helping my students grow to the best of their abilities, but I missed doing the work for me.
That was a really long way to say: This is why I love running.
I feel like I have finally found this one thing that I can do that is just for me. I can look back on my training history and see the improvements in black and white. I can’t argue about opinions, or good days and bad days (although there are plenty of each), because the proof is in the consistent progress. I can compare my best today with my best last month, and I can see, without a shadow of a doubt, that my hard work is paying off.
I had an AWESOME workout at the track with my team today. I left all kinds of giddy, and I still haven’t gotten over how I exceeded every single expectation I made for this workout. The past 2 weeks of my training have been super solid, and they leave me feeling like a million bucks…and a little stiff and sore 😉 I don’t mind though. Bring it sore legs. I don’t mind a reminder of how hard I’ve worked.
Today I was still the last one on the track. I don’t really know why, but I was. You know what? I didn’t mind at all. I was too happy and excited, and I think I finally understood the concept of not comparing myself to others. My speedy friends that ran most of my last lap with me? They were on their cool down. They had finished a while ago, and their cool down pace is about my working pace, but who really cares? They made me faster, and I am so grateful for their support and encouragement! I am getting better, stronger, faster and more positive every day. I am so grateful to have this opportunity to run with Chances for Children and to have the constant knowledge, wisdom, and support of Coach Susan.
Today is a great day to be training for a marathon, friends.
Your turn! Tell me something you’ve accomplished for yourself lately that you didn’t think you could do? Or about a personal breakthrough you’ve had? I WANT TO HEAR YOUR HAPPY STORIES TOO!!! Let’s spread this giddiness all over the place!