Monday, July 20, 2009

You Must Do The Thing You Think You Cannot Do

My Mom recently quoted Eleanor Roosevelt:

"You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, 'I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.' You must do the thing you think you cannot do. "

Mom reminded me that us Lougee women, five generations back, have weathered many, many, many emotional and physical storms. Whether we married young, had children young, had miscarriages, suffered physical ailments, lost loved ones through divorce and/or through death, whatever the case, we have not only weathered it, we have often been able to rise above it.

We are survivors.

I take this reminder with me now on a daily basis as I prepare for one of the most challenging periods in my life. This challenge comes, not from outside, which would be far easier for me to deal with, but from inside. I will have to reach far down inside of myself to find the strength and fortitude to rise up and accomplish the goals set before me. While I have weathered and even risen above challenges in the past, I am not good at this sort of thing.

I found during drill last year that when I was passed up by the pacer, who was running a 10:30 mile, I reacted, not by pushing harder and running faster but, by allowing myself to become discouraged and by slowing down. Did I applaud the fact that I was at least there, trying? Yes. But I didn't shine the way I wanted to. Now, back then I hadn't even started a regular exercise program yet, had hardly run at all since high school unless it was after a child. But, I went back for more.

While being a survivor has its advantages I want to do more than survive this time. I want to succeed. I want to shine. I want to show myself and everyone else that I can do more.

I need to.

I am scared to death to put my 40 year old body through the paces involved in Army Basic Training. Twenty two weeks I will be training to become a soldier - a defender of freedom and an upholder of the Constitution. I have that long to become more than I have ever thought I could be. I want to become a force to be reckoned with.

I want to Be All I Can Be and I want to be Army Strong. It sounds trite, I know, but I want it anyway. It doesn't seem so trite to me now.


  1. There isn't anything in the world, either physical or mental accomplishment, that did not start out as a want. Someone wanted an engine to drive the wheels of a cart, and cars were born. Someone wanted to walk on the moon, and we ended up with the Apollo space missions. Look around you. Everything in your life started with a want. A designer somewhere wanted the opportunity to design comfortable furniture, and you now have couches and chairs. A potter wanted to work with clay, and gave you bowls and platters as a result.

    Do not under estimate the power of Want. Do not fear, or feel abashed, to express your wants in words. The very first step in any achievement is stating what it is you want in words. It's the bedrock of goal setting. Countless books and motivational speakers have expounded on this one simlpe truth. If you write you goals down, if you state them clearly and aloud, if you put them where you and others can see them, you're a million times more likely to acheive your goals.

    Good for you for stating your wants clearly and outloud. You have given yourself a great gift; A map letting you know where you are going.

  2. Thanks Pam!
    I think you have to really want something to change what you do in your life and how you live. If I REALLY wanted to be rich, I would be. It is all about priorities - being rich monetarily is not a priority for me - therefore, when I say I want to be rich - what I really want is to win the lottery! :oD
    Thanks for the comments - I feel less like I am talking to "air." :o)

  3. You have already been amazed by what your body can do...and what it will do.
    You will also be amazed by where your mind can go...or not go. I know I've never done this, been through it, etc. But I do appreciate what a human is capable of based on previous experiences, and those I've witnessed in others.
    You will do wonders.
    You will do wonders.
    I love you.

  4. I have.
    I hope.
    Thank you.
    I love you too.

    This means so very much to me. And will help me keep going.