The occasional occurrence of stupid things

Stupid things happen.

Like the time my math skills failed me and my decree that  “4 + 3 = 6” drew the amused look of Mark. (Note to self: Never attempt to do math on the fly in front of someone who has left-brain tendencies.)

Like the time I wrote “Heart” instead of “Hart” trophy in my mobile Facebook upload of pictures from the NHL trophy exhibit at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery. (I really could use a personal copy editor.)

And like the time when I set my alarm for 6 PM instead of 6 AM, hence missing my chance to join my friend Sue during my treadmill run on Tuesday.

Some days I don’t know where my mind is.

And those days are actually gifts, because if I don’t keep track of my mind, it has a tendency to run the show on its own. When my brian takes over, when I start living too much in my own head, it’s a dark, dangerous place to be around — for me, for friends, for loved ones, for wildlife in the area, for the guy selling me coffee.

My latest brain cramp led me to struggling through five miles on the treadmill alone, placed me in a panic that my heel will never feel quite right again and tried to convince me that my worth, both to myself and others around me, was based in my performance rather than my existence.

Whew! Glad I caught that one in time.

There’s an old story I tell myself that revolves around worthiness, about believing that I will only be good enough for (insert desired feeling or status here) when I have (insert level of achievement here). It’s a story that no longer rings true for me. Only problem is, sometimes my mind tries to repackage the story in something shiny and see if I’ll bite again.

As I prepare for the Disney half marathon, the notion of breaking the 2-hour mark has faded. My body has spoken. It doesn’t want to focus on results. It wants me to enjoy the trip. It wants me to ignore the destructive games my mind plays which tries to weave a tale if I don’t have (and obtain) some competitive goal tat my quality as a human being would be equivalent to that of the subprime mortgage industry .

No. My body is reminding me I want something different. It’s time to change the way I look at the weekend. I choose to embrace the experience, not judge the performance. I chose to live it rather than evaluate it.

After all, on my list of intentions for 2011 were to tackle new challenges, to go new places — and those challenges and new places may come in an unexpected form. Part of the challenge is to give up judging what it is that I want by some external standard.

Yes, this minor injury setback may be a gift indeed, along with the occasional occurrence of stupid things.

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