The other day I was all sorts of a frazzled mess, but mostly it was the good kind. I was possibly over caffeinated or excited about this book that I’m finishing (and finally not “just” writing), or a little nervous to go skiing again. Maybe it was all three. A trifecta of nerves = lovely.
I met a friend for a pre-ski lunch, and on the way there I listened to all of my favorite songs and (dangerously) glanced at my best friend in the rear view mirror, but when I got there I actually got horizontal on the bench we were sitting at in a moment of
pathetic dramatic despair. Our server peered over the bar at me and raised her eyebrow; I sat up. I ate, I drank, and I tried everything to calm myself—including not stop chatter-boxing—but the nerves, they just wouldn’t settle.
On the chairlift I described myself as a spastic out of control toddler, then downgraded myself to an infant in need of a swaddling. My friend is something of a saint, and he told me to breathe and assured me that I’d feel better when I got my skis on the snow because the movement and meditation of skiing would take my mind off all of the baloney that had gotten me into my tizzy.
“Look up at Kachina,” he said. “Those lines on the right are super steep, but over there on the left—you’ll be skiing that soon.” I suggested he was out of his mind, but his smile and laugh said no. When we got off the chair he told me to pose in front of the peak for a picture. “You’ll love it,” he said “When you ski it this will be a great reminder of when you thought you couldn’t.”
It’s just an incredible thing when your friends believe in you more than you believe in yourself, and whether I ski up there or not (I’d gamble that I’ll hike it regardless, being the lover of uphill battles that I am….) what this really boils down to is faith. Faith in ourselves and each other to be just a little bit better tomorrow than we are today.
And I believe this is what it’s all about: embracing the courage to be yourself when it can be scary, bravery to be yourself even when that self isn’t exactly what you’re striving for. Because we’re all works in progress, and the unedited versions of ourselves are
usually always far better than any mocked up, phony version. As I always say: Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.
So here I am with my butt stuck out a little too far, smile a little awkward, stance totally goofy. But this is child’s play compared to those pictures I posted last year of learning to surf with my rash guard hiked up and belly out and my face all “woah.” Oi.
P.S. In the coming days there will be a part 2 to this: My love-hate affair with skiing.
If I haven’t already recomended it, check out David Whyte’s CD on mid life…I think you will enjoy it and learn from it.
Yes! i think you sent me one of his poems once, and i loved it. what is this CD?