Ten Seconds Rest

The bubbles go churning up around you, billowing the way puffs of smoke escape wildfires on prairies engulfed in flames.  You feel the water boiling from the heat of your heart and the fire of your exertion.  As fast as you can; you can.

Each moment, you are a holy being devoted to one thought; how can I go faster?

And you analyze and you adjust and you push and you prod and you don’t listen to giving up or whining and you can’t hear your heart failing.  You won’t let yourself slow down- not for a moment.  Eyes tossed up, you judge the end to be near.  And with all the mad, wild fearlessness of governed frenzy, you push yourself even harder.

“I always finish well!” Is the declaration in your mind, and promised with your own voice.

You do.

So sudden, there is silence.  Silence in sound, silence in motion, silence in every last part of everything that you know.  The leftover hum of the struck tuning fork lingers in your water logged ears and trickles throughout your nerves.

Thus begins your ten seconds rest.

It doesn’t sound like a lot… but it is everything.  It is everything you need to get up and go again.  It is determined, deep, sweet breaths.  It is mental stock, quiet adjustment.  It is decisions.  It is encouragement.  In that ten seconds, you have just enough time to recoup.  You draw back to you, everything that you just pushed out from you.  As much as you can possibly recover, you gain again.

Ten seconds.  Your thoughts, your determination… a small smile to ease the soul and with it the body.  Stand.  Rest.  Breathe in air while you can.  Feel the beating of your heart.  Is it sweat or water dripping off your forehead?  Does it matter?

Breathe.  Appreciate.  Enjoy.

And –  Ready? – go again.

… Sometimes, we forget the value of pausing.  We forget the value of thinking.  We forget the value of just being who we are, and taking stock of what we are doing.  We forget to just breathe… and to listen to the breaths we take.  We forget, in the madness of aspiring to hit that wall over and over and over again and to count up as high as we can, to simply stop and breathe.

Rest.  Even if it’s just for ten seconds.  Gather yourself before you go again.  Enjoy the life we live and actually partake of what it has to offer before you!  Capture the moments between your victories and hold them to your heart as dear friends before you leave again.

You need ten seconds rest.  At least once a day.  Trust me.

Take it.

And then go again.

Beyond Me

I was exhausted.  Dragging.  Flagging.  Tired.  Grumpy.  EXHAUSTED.

I went to physical therapy and I somehow got myself through the workout.  Then, from there, I dragged myself to the pool.  I was wiped.  I didn’t know why, but I was so tired.  I was actually emitting strange groaning sounds as I lumbered through the locker room.  An older lady laughed at me.

“How far are you swimming today?” She asked.

“Two miles,” I replied.  That was my goal, after all.

“Wow,” She said. “Two miles!”

She was the fourth person to whom I had confided my goal for the day.  Person Number Four.  I kept thinking that if I kept telling people that I was going to swim so far… that I would somehow find the energy to swim so far.  But it wasn’t working.  I was still exhausted when I got into the pool.

I started to drill… but I felt like I was drowning.  So I stopped drilling and just swam a warm up.  I was completely out of sync… everything about me was as awkward as a twelve-year old boy asking out a thirteen-year old girl.  I could not find a rhythm that I liked.  Read more