This month, I am trying to take a (healthy) risk a day. Part of the challenge has been figuring out what that even looks like. What do I think of as a risk? What are examples of risks, big and small, that I might take? I’ve loved exploring these questions with people. (How does my idea of a risk compare to or differ from your idea of a risk? What risk could you take today? I’d love to hear your responses!!)
This week, my greatest risk was setting my alarm for 5:30 a.m. (a risk in and of itself since I am the opposite of a morning person), so that I could try the Bikram yoga class a few doors down from where I was staying in Washington DC. (I took a Bikram yoga class, once, about 20 years ago.) This week’s class felt great, and I felt truly proud of myself.
I have recently realized a couple of things about myself and risk taking: I willingly and frequently take emotional risks. I rarely and hesitantly take physical risks. I lack a physical confidence that has kept me from playing sports, from spending much time on a bike, from ever really learning how to swim, from trying new forms of exercise. The one and only time I trained for and ran a half marathon felt like one of the biggest accomplishments of my life. It was such a stretch for me, pushing my body like that.
I feel the same sense of accomplishment now, as I near my 10-mile goal. I really didn’t know whether I would ever be capable of this again. But here I am, once more running 7, 8, 9 miles on the weekend as part of my regular routine!
Here I am, feeling strong again—which is what allowed me to risk that yoga class. I never would have had the courage a few months ago. How very grateful I am: I am grateful for my working arms and legs, heart and lungs. And I am grateful to all of you. I doubt that I would be where I am today were it not for your continuous kindness and support, as well as your confidence in me when I lacked confidence in myself.