Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Gratitude


When I go out for a run, I just take off, placing one foot in front of the other -- oh, how I truly enjoy this physical freedom.  Then, I realize how blessed I am!  

In my youth, I took my good health for granted.  As I have gotten older, I understand how fortunate I am.

My sister and I grew up in Brooklyn.  As tweens and teens, we played handball on our block every summer day.  My sister was the better athlete -- I was no slouch, but she was super coordinated and usually beat me in our daily handball games.  She also was a faster runner, especially over short distances.

Fast forward forty years to 2014... my sister has Multiple Sclerosis.  Even with her walker, she walks with great difficulty.  Her muscles constantly ache from uncontrollable spasms. She has tremors in both hands.  She cannot tolerate the heat.

My heart aches for my sister.  I constantly ask why... Why did my sister get MS?  Why my sister and not me?  There are many times that I wish I was the one with MS because it just seems so unfair.  I have no answers... I only know that I was given a gift - I can run forever and will do just that...

The more I run, the better I feel about myself.  And, the better I feel about myself, the more I can help others, especially my sister.  After a run, especially a long one, I am empowered. This feeling of empowerment gives me the confidence to tackle life's challenges head on.

I run for my sister and for all those who cannot.  Running is a precious gift.