Asthma, a big fat A on my shirt that gave me permission to hold back.
Asthma, the worst way to learn lessons in my life.
Asthma, an excuse to play small until the day I ran a mile for the first time. I can still remember it like it was yesterday.
There I was at the top of the hill, on the north side of my hometown, looking at my grandparent’s house a mile outside of town.
I had a goal in mind and I was determined to achieve it.
I prepped by taking my albuterol, quenching my thirst, and giving myself the biggest pep talk EVER.
“Only one mile, you can do this, now is the time!”
I had been “waogging,” (walking/jogging) as I called it back then, to prepare for this moment! I started at a nice slow pace bouncing along down the hill.
“As long as I don’t stop bouncing, it’s still considered running, I got this.”
A few light poles go by and my breathing begins to intensify.
“It’s okay we can recover when we get to the end, keep going!”
My legs are throbbing, my heart is racing, and I’m almost halfway there!
“Is this really happening? Am I doing it? There’s still a long way to go. I could just stop right now.”
I’m counting each breath in and every breath out to keep my mind on the prize! I’m counting the steps between the light poles.
“One, two, three, four, oh man! My chest is feeling a little tight. Here it comes. I’m not gonna make it! SHUT UP! I got this! We’re almost there!”
I turn around to see how far I’ve gone and I’ve almost crossed the bridge! Three-fourths of the way to the end!
“We’ve already made it this far! There’s no way we can give up now. Don’t cut yourself short. You CAN do this! Keep going!”
There are only three light poles left to the end. I start to pick up the pace to get it over with! The butterflies fill my stomach! The tears flood my eyes.
“I’m doing it! I’m almost there! It’s happening!”
One last push to the end and I cross the edge of my grandparent’s driveway! The tears start pouring down my face. I’m coughing and gagging trying to catch my breath! I look back on how far I had gone and I feel a sense of relief!
I just broke through a major barrier.
Growing up I used my asthma as an excuse to get out of sports, gatherings with my friends, and sometimes school. It was a crutch. Learning to manage my asthma was not an easy task, but it was doable. If I knew then what I know now… ❤️
Once I was able to break through that barrier it opened a whole new door of opportunities. Now, I don’t wait for the door to open, I kick it down!
Life isn’t waiting for us to learn how to manage our shit. It’ll go on without us.
The question is, how long will you use your crutch to avoid what you REALLY want to do?