This morning, miracle of miracles, I managed to get myself to a 5:30 spin class. I hadn’t made that class since this summer because I haven’t had the pressure of Ironman training to get my butt in gear quite that early in the morning. I do get up at 5:10 to meet my friends to run at 5:50, but getting up at 4:40 to make a 5:30 spin class is a much bigger challenge mentally. Maybe because the alarm time begins with a 4? Anyway, I made it, and my instructor made it a sweet morning for me.
When I got on my usual bike towards the back of the room, he was wandering around the room helping people set up. As he approached me, he asked if I’d done four or five Ironman races. I told him four, and he did a sweet little yoga bow to me. Then he proceeded to tell the entire room, through his microphone, what I’d done and that lots of people get the bug to do one, but anyone who does four is either incredibly fit, crazy or both. With that, he made me smile, and, with his constant smiles and knowing glances, he encouraged me through the entire class.
I love that for months this man has nudged me at the gym to return to his class, and that, when I did, he made a huge deal of my being there. It wasn’t necessary, but it was really sweet. And I know he will do it again if I show up next week or the week after. He’s just that sort of personality.
How great would it be to interact with everyone the way he did with me today – to tell people that I admire them and am grateful for their presence in my life?
- Kerry and Jenny, I so love starting my days with you. I love your friendship and our time together running. See you tomorrow morning, right?
- Jeanne (and I have two of you), you changed my life, each in your own beautiful way.
- Jenny, the West Texas pictures you took that are hanging in my bedroom are calling to me. Let’s book a trip so I can laugh deeply for a few days.
- Erin, though you’re in Dallas now, you continue to inspire me to write, to train, to problem solve and never to let myself get down. I owe you so much for all of that.
- Cindy (again I have two of you), every time your name pops up on my phone, I feel the care and love of a dear friend. You don’t just offer friendship – you are friendship – and I’m so grateful.
- John, Kate, Andy and Laura Lynn, not a day goes by that I don’t look at pictures of you and your kids and thank my lucky stars for the middle school geek camp that made our friendships possible.
- Marylee, your handwritten cards brighten up my mailbox and my home. Thank you for the care that you put into them and the love you have shown me.
- Amit and Melanie, you guys, individually and as a couple, had me at hello. I’m crazy about you both and grateful for the many times you’ve listened and understood.
- Ann, I still think of you every single time I walk into my house and see my signed Ethan Hawke photo. Best. Gift. Ever. I can’t wait to connect with you in a beautiful place for a fun race.
- Michelle, your presence in my home is missed. When can you visit? When can I visit?
- Catherine, you continue to amaze me with your humble and generous spirit. I’m glad you’re travelling the world right now. I miss you, but you deserve the play time.
- Lina and Wegs, I was just talking about you guys last night. I crave your company. Can we celebrate birthdays together next month? Somehow?
- Dave, where do I begin? You feel like an answered prayer.
I could go on and on. I think these things every single day – and many more like them about so many of my dear friends – but I don’t always voice them. In fact, I don’t voice them often enough.
I so appreciate hearing from the people in my life that my presence matters to them, that I affect them in good and meaningful ways, and that, even when we aren’t operating under the same rhythm, we are supporting one another and want what’s best for one another. I’d like to make sure I’m putting that same appreciation back out into the world.
So, dear ones, so many of whom are unnamed, know that it matters to me whether or not you show up. Know that I sing your praises and would declare them into a microphone given the opportunity to do so. If ever you are having a piss poor day and need to know you make a difference in the life of another, call me, and I will assure you of that. Because you do. You make an enormous difference in mine.
[Visualize a yoga bow here. To you.]