It’s amazing how we take so many simple things in our lives for granted. Like walking. Being free to meander down forest paths or stroll down city sidewalks, soaking in all the life around you. How often do you take walks or go explore the world on foot? I know for me, it’s certainly not nearly as often as I’d like.. maybe once a month or even less. There is someone I know who has been walking a lot lately though. Someone who has inspired me to really embrace this simple gift of two good legs and a strong back to carry me wherever I want to go…
My brother has been battling back pain for over 10 years now, ever since he injured himself working as an inventory manager at a cabinet factory. Fortunately, not long after the injury he completed his degree and was able to move on to teaching – but the injury has limited his ability to do even something as simple as go for a long stroll or go hiking in a state park… things he dearly loved. That all changed late last year. In November, he began to realize – out of nowhere – that his back wasn’t hurting like it used to. He’d had no procedures or surgeries or new therapy. Nothing. And just like that, the pain was going away with no explanation for why. I’m so wonderfully perplexed by this.
And so, after over a decade of being restricted to only small trips to the store and straight home, my brother took his new found freedom and began to walk. He walked and he walked, for hours. For days. He bought a pedometer to track all his walking. By the end of January he had walked 45 hours and 42 miles! I’m so inspired by this walking journey of his. It made me think about what it would be like if I couldn’t just go out for a long walk or spend the day hiking at the lake… or the other physical things I enjoy, like rock climbing or kayaking. All the little things that can be so easy to take for granted, his story has helped to remind me to be very grateful that I have a healthy body that allows me to experience this journey of life in as many ways as I can imagine.
It has also inspired me to think of small ways to embrace the simple things in life. Today for example, has been an unseasonably warm and beautiful day in Dallas. With a cool breeze and temperatures in the 70’s (in February!), I decided to go home for lunch. I rode the whole way with all the windows rolled down and it was glorious. It wasn’t a 7 hour walk – but it was some small way to just stop from the hustle and bustle of life and soak in the beauty that is all around.
Thank you Mike. =)
To read more of Mike’s journey and other random awesome stuff he posts – visit his blog here!