You Have to Start Somewhere

The water was cool, the sun setting behind the trees but still bright enough to head toward. I dove under, the water covering me entirely, like a rebirth, an inauguration, a baptism.

It had been at least a year since I last swam laps, and let’s just say I wasn’t in the best of shape. Three days before starting a four-day-a-week master swim class at dawn, I thought I’d see just how terribly I’d need to work to achieve anything worthwhile.

Sixteen laps later, slow long laps, with frequent stops, my heart pounding in my chest, my skin tingly warm, I knew it would take a while to return to perfect health.

We have the illusion of being fit and healthy. It is an illusion, though, as we sit in our cars and sit at our desks and walk only from the mailbox to the house and back again. At least that’s my illusion.

Yes my clothes still fit. Yes, I look OK in the mirror. I am not out of breath on our hikes in the woods.

So we lull ourselves into the myth of the illusion. Appearances are deceiving. We never know what lurks beneath the surface.

For me, it was a splash of awakening to realize how far the climb will be.

But. You have to start somewhere.

The further down the hill I slide, the longer it will take.

Bright and early, Monday morning, I’ll be the one in the slow lane. I don’t care. At least I’ll be there.

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