Josh and I went on a road trip last week. We were meeting Ben down in Pittsburgh for a soccer game at Heinz field. But none of that has anything to do with this story. I tend to give too many details. Lol
Anyway…the GPS was taking me toward Monroeville and I wanted to go down 28 to avoid all the traffic lights. I decided to ignore the voice on the phone and head towards Kittanning. Shortly after we left Indiana the voice told me to make a left. I have traveled this route many times and I knew that I needed to go straight. I turned anyway. I shamed myself as soon as I did it because I knew it was still trying to take me through Monroeville. I thought about turning around but noticed that this was going to save me a few minutes. I continued on and told myself there was a reason we were to go this way.
Josh had fallen asleep by now. It was quiet, and the sun was shining. The drive was beautiful, and it just so happened to take me back in time, twenty-six years to be exact. The road took me past my old high school. I drove by the houses of many friends that I spent the night at. I drove past the football field that I performed on as a majorette. I drove by the pub that we would get pizza at after games. If Josh had been awake, I would have told him all the stories. The same stories I tell him every time we are on this road. Come to think of it…maybe he was pretending to be sleeping. 🤔
I thought of the many lessons I had learned as a teenager. Most of them really hard. The hard lessons are what have made me who I am. I wished the fifteen-year-old boy who slept beside me knew that anything hard teaches us so much more. He tends to look for the easy way out. Sometimes I call him lazy but in the back of my head I know that he is working smart.
As I past the high school, I took a look at the track. I remembered the presidential fitness mile that we had to run each year. Oh, how I hated to run. My older sister Denise had taught me a trick. She likes to work smart like Josh. Our gym teacher at the time was a sweet little lady that didn’t pay close attention to detail. She held a clipboard and asked us to say what lap we were on as we past her. She didn’t write it down until we were finished so she couldn’t remember what lap we were on. We would cheat and say a lap or two more than what we had actually done. She would praise us for how fast we were doing it.
I have mixed emotions about what I have done. Part of me hates that I cheated the other part knows why I did. I couldn’t run back then, in fact I still can’t run. My face immediately turns red, I can’t breathe, and I feel as if my heart is going to jump out of my chest. Back then, I didn’t want to seem weak. I know that I would have been the absolute last runner in and didn’t want to be embarrassed by it. I was also not good at working to my full potential when I didn’t have to.
This summer Josh is doing an online gym/health class. I received an email last week saying that he was behind and in danger of failing the class. I laughed when I saw the email and replied to it telling them that I wasn’t worried. Josh always gets things done. He may wait until the last minute. He may not put in any extra effort, but he will get it done.
I told him they contacted me. He told me it was so boring. He knew he had to do it, but he had a whole week until it was due. He had the entire summer and decided to wait until the last week to do it. Ugh. I could have made a big stink about it. I could have demanded he do it that day. I didn’t. I never have to make him do anything. He always makes good choices.
Probably better choices than I ever made.
He wouldn’t have skipped any laps when running his mile. But he would do the least amount possible to get the best grade. He is working smart. I admire that about him. I am one extreme or the other. I am either completely lazy about things or I go 110% and wear myself down. I’m trying to find a balance. Maybe I should take some lessons from this 15-year-old?🤔
Anyway…if I were asked to run the mile today, if my sweet old gym teacher was still alive. I wouldn’t tell her I was on the 3rd lap when I was really on the 2nd. I would tell her I’m not really good at running. I would tell her that I’ll do it anyway because it’s required. I’d tell her that I’m finally at a point in my life where I’m not embarrassed for coming in last. In fact, I may even tell her I’ll walk it instead of running it. Then I’d ask God to help me do it…one lap at a time. And I would proudly announce the actual lap I was on each time I past her. I would be proud of myself when I finished. The rest of the class who would have finished way before me would be there waiting for me. 😂
What about you? What lap are you on?