Monday, September 8, 2014

One Step At A Time

A friend of mine accomplished an all-day bike event today. I don't think I could do that. Another friend has lost so much weight that she looks like a different person than when I last saw her. Yet another has gotten a new, even more interesting job than she had before.

Some days, my biggest accomplishment is getting myself and my kids to bed before 11pm. Or making lunches. Or cleaning stray toothpaste off the bathroom sink.

As far as I can tell, there are opportunities every day to feel overwhelmed. After two days of a school year, I am already worried about next steps--test scores and peer groups and all the things I need to know but don't. Some days, the small accomplishments are enough to balance out my worry that I haven't done enough. Other days, they just aren't.

And then I think about my friend. He wasn't a biker the last time I saw him. He didn't just decide to do an all-day ride and then just do it. There were months, if not longer, of training and preparation, both physical and mental. He accomplished the ride, I am fairly sure, because he worked his way toward it and pushed through the times when such a thing might be overwhelming. He believed not only that he could do it, but that it was worth the doing. And, I suspect, he took it one step, and one pedal, at a time.

I don't have to accomplish everything all at once. I can get through elementary school (well, at least a few weeks of it) before planning for middle school. I can get used to high school (at least a little) before stressing about college. I can get back to thirty minutes on the elliptical before even considering biking all day. And I can be happy about just getting dinner on the table before worrying about cooking a gourmet meal (which half my household probably wouldn't like anyway).

The point is, most of these things can't happen overnight. And they don't have to. Just as my biking friend worked toward riding for eleven hours, I can take steps toward everything. The steps might even be fun, or, at least, satisfying. And in the end, I'll get there--or, at least, somewhere. One step at a time.

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