Sometimes You Surprise Yourself


Sometimes you surprise yourself. The good times are the times you realize you are stronger than you thought you were.

There are the body wins. When you find yourself at the top of a chairlift on a black diamond run when you thought it was going to be your first blue run. And you make it down. You have no other choice. It may be slow. It will be scary. Your heart is beating a million miles a minute. Each navigation of a mogul is like falling off a cliff. But suddenly you are in a zone and …you made it. Those are the times that you realize your body has more in it than you thought. Yeah.. you can do that Barry’s Bootcamp on  4 hours sleep. No problem. Just remember, life really does go one step at a time. Right now, you only have to take one step.

There are the mind wins. When you overcome a fear. When you (a formerly uber shy girl who nearly flunked a class because she just would. not. raise. her. hand) has to speak up. When you have to stand up in front of 200 people and give a speech. Hands shaking…but voice much steadier than you think. You finish with amazement. Is this really that same girl? You may be nervous again, but it will only get easier, never harder. Yeah, now you don’t wait to raise your hand. You just keep it simple and say it with conviction.

There are the heart wins. The breakup that you thought you would never get over. When it feels like your whole world got swept out from underneath your feet and nothing is solid. When you can actually feel the heaviness in your heart and can’t envision ever being happy again. Then one day you wake up and …it’s over. God, or someone, really does open another window when one closes. Everyone takes a different amount of time …but we all do get over it. Sometimes it’s just a matter of pulling up the shade so you can see the window.

Then there are the times you surprise yourself in the opposite sense. When you don’t bounce back the way you thought. Those are the times you don’t recognize yourself. The times you think, I never thought I would be this person. I never thought I would be in this position. But, you never really know how you will deal with something until you are in it. Don’t beat yourself up over those. Eventually you will pull yourself up and out…you will know when you are ready. Don’t force it. It’s just a chance to get to know yourself better. Next time, you will have more ammunition to deal with it…and you will surprise yourself again.

There will always be more surprises. Embrace them.

— 40-something submission, Chicago, IL

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