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.


Post-run yoga on my front lawn to loosen those muscles!

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.


The complete Bender’s Mender Nantucket crew, just before taking off for our 8 mile run today. From left: my husband Josh, me, Amanda, Jen, Nunia, Clover, Jain.






  1. You are the best. Have to think about this taking risks. Thank you for being who you are. You look fabulous running with all.

    Hugs. Ab.


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