Health. Ugh.

TALK ABOUT JOURNEY. OR LIFESTYLE. OR WHATEVER THE HECK YOU WANT TO CALL IT. HEALTH IS A NEVER ENDING ONE. What with the constant doctor appointments? (By the way, yes, I was yelling all of that in my head.) There are constantly new diseases being discovered, new cures, and constant evolutions of old ones like the flu. Taking care of the body is a never ending process that requires constant and immediate attention. Like, what the heck body, why can’t you just remain super healthy and glow 24/7? (That almost said 24/6 because, ya know, you gotta take that extra day to do whatever, I guess.) But, no, it’s a freaking trek up an incredibly tall mountain that is also a volcano and erupts like fifty times a year, and then it’s also known for landslide in the spring, fires in the summer, and avalanches in the winter. It’s tiring, difficult, and no one really wants to do it. People who are obsessed with healthy stuff like spinach and working out, have been doing it for so long now, their practically insane and high on endorphins. They know nothing else at this point, and basically, that’s the point we are trying to get to: complete insanity.

I hit that particular point over the summer.

Let’s begin before the summer. Spring semester of my sophomore year, and God was like, “Yo, get your butt in gear and get healthy.” I reluctantly started, but I was soon living in the gym (practically). I was there running and weightlifting, getting stronger. Then I injured my knee, partially because I was a new, immature runner and health folk and partially because I was so stressed I was just tense all the time, so it made my joints really stiff.  Was I smart, and did I put ice on my knee though? No. Of course not. I kept running. Slowly I got over the pain, and moved on.

Summer comes around. One of the first things I do is get a gym membership. I go with my sister almost every night. Then my uncle goes with me once, and he is hooked. He gets a membership and begins to go in the morning at like five. Time goes by, I get busy during the day, my sister starts working at night, so what do I do? I start going at five with Uncle, but then Little Sister and I would occasionally go after she got out of work, but then my mom decided she wanted to start working out so I would go with her at seven in the morning.  There were days when I would go to the gym three times in a day. (See, insane.) I loved every second of it though. It was amazing.

This semester comes around. I don’t go to the gym for like three weeks, when I suddenly decide to go for a run. Out of shape and out of practice, I hurt my right knee. (Last semester, I had hurt my left knee.) I run once, and I’m out of the game. What do I do? I throw some K-Pop in my ears and hit the elliptical. I work to retrain the muscle in my knees and to build them up. I begin icing them. I wear a knee brace (which I got over the summer). I’m smart about things this time.

Now this is where things get funny.

I’m in the Hammer with a friend, and we’re just casually walking along when my ankle goes sideways. I go down. My knees it the floor so hard it echoed. To say the least, I ended up with a sprained ankle. My left knee was internally bruised, and my right knee turned black. It was about a week after that I was stressed out and tired, so I decided to run whether or not it would hurt my knee. I ran. I did some weightlifting. I left (going down like three flights of stairs), and my knee never hurt, so I began to speculate. My belief is (this may not be true, I don’t know) that when I fell and hit my knees, the impact pushed everything back into place. (All you medical people can correct me if I’m wrong, but my knees haven’t hurt since then.)

Did I keep going to the gym after being completely overjoyed that I could run without pain? No. I’ve been going off and on, but not doing much. Today is the first day that I actually did a full complete workout. I ran a mile, and did leg day. I’m sore. I’m tired. And I feel completely ecstatic. This is what I needed to get me back to that point of insanity that a health nut requires.

Although, while I can completely succeed in going to the gym, my mountain lies with food. I can go to the gym everyday, but as long as I keep eating gluten and food that drops my blood sugar, I will never be as healthy as I can be. I can say that I now eat salads (mostly spinach and veggies) without ranch, but those blueberry scones in the morning with breakfast, tend to get me every time. I can do so good for a week, and then it’s like I crumble.

It’s an on going process, and I’m learning. God has been with me every step of the way. He hasn’t let me down yet, and He won’t start now. Rather, He becomes more and more encouraging.

If I can do it, you can too! Let’s do this together. It’s always better climbing this mountain of unusual, natural disasters when your with someone. Going alone is rather lonely.

I love you. I believe in you. Good luck!

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Out On 27th 1/2 St.

Fifth generation home.

70s shag carpet.

Linoleum kitchen floors.

Squeky Lazy Suzan.

Slamming screen door.

Running barefoot down

A gravel driveway

Passed tall green pines,

Surrounded by cornfields,

Mosquito infested swamps, and

Crickets and spring peepers.

Running on deer trails

Through purple brambles,

Gaining blackberry stains

And small scars,

Searching for buried treasure:

Sun bleached bones.

 

The skull hung in the garage.

I wish we still lived there.

The World Above.

There was the sun, and stretched out before it was a sea of fire. Taan and Yulius sat on the edge of an island drifting through the sky. It was one cloud, constantly shifting and drifting from one point in the universe to another. They watched the sun slip around to the other side of the world knowing that, once it was gone, they could swim in the inky black, sometimes blue, ocean, and float with the stars. They had to wait until the sun set though or else they would burn and fall to the world below, where people called their falling bodies shooting stars. Taan recalled how people below would make wishes on the shooting stars and take pictures of them. From their perspective, he guessed it was beautiful; although, this was a hard concept to convey to Yulius.

 “One day, I want to go down there,” Yulius said. He leaned back on his hands.

 “You wouldn’t like it. Everything is muted down there,” said Taan. “Besides, after this, I promised to take to you to the forest.” 

 “What do the people down there think about the forest?”

 “They call it lightening, and they call the sound thunder. You wouldn’t understand them, Yulius. Trust me. You wouldn’t like it.” 

 The sun disappeared. Taan stood up and without further waiting, he stepped off the cloud and dropped down among the stars. Yulius followed shortly after, dropping the subject of the world called Earth.

Story Time

Thirty Seconds

“Choose one.”

On the table in front of me was a razor blade, a pair of scissors, a steak knife, a bottle of Hydrocodone, a bottle of Oxycontin, a syringe filled with Dilaudid (which is eight times stronger than morphine), a Colt 1911 .45 caliber pistol, and a picture of my family whom I slaughtered. Behind me in white uniforms stood two men. In their hands they held long black staffs. The man standing behind my left shoulder raised his staff and hit the back of my head. I brought my head back up, flipping my hair over my shoulder. I rolled my eyes. “Only one? But they all look so fun.”

“Choose one.”

I raised my cuffed hands. “Do I get to administer my own death or am I even denied that pleasure?”

The man on the other side of the table in front of me slammed his hands down. His eyes were wide. I imagined that if they bulged out any further than they would pop right out of his head. “Any pleasure you have been denied is because you sacrificed it.”

I nodded toward the picture on the table. “Are you referring to them being a pleasure?” His right eye twitched. “Because, if so,” I leaned forward and rested my elbows on the table, “I didn’t find them pleasurable.”

“Choose. One. Now.”

“Pistol.” He reeled back and grabbed the pistol. He aimed it at me. “But, then again that would be too simple wouldn’t it be?” I smiled. He slammed the pistol on the table. “The steak knife, now that would be messy.”

“Choose one!”

I stretched my arms out and lightly ran my fingers across everything in front of me. “The medicine. That would be painless, but boring.” I brought my arms back and looked up at him. I pouted my lips and gave him the best doll face I could. “Don’t you have anything more fun than this?”

A vein in his neck began to pop out. I snorted as he got closer to my face. In a low voice he said, “Choose. One.”

“Syringe.” Before he could grab it, I snagged the needle in my cuffed hands and injected it into his neck. He quickly reached up and pulled it out. His elbow began to shake and eyes began to close.

I had thirty seconds before he collapsed. I snagged the gun. He fell onto the table. I stood up, and as I turned, I kicked the chair behind me. Both men easily avoided the chair. I shot the one who had stood behind my right shoulder. The one to the left was on me in seconds. He brought his staff down hard on my wrists forcing me to drop the gun. He quickly dropped his own staff and grabbed my wrists. He forced them above my head while he pushed me back onto the table. He placed one hand on my shoulder holding me down while He grabbed my wrists and brought them down to my abdomen. He flipped me over onto my stomach. The razor blade, the scissors, and the steak knife were right under me. I squirmed underneath the pressure of his hand on my back. He pressed harder. He pulled out a walky-talky and started calling for backup. There was a reply in seconds.

The pressure on my back lightened as he yelled orders into the walky-talky. He was giving the person on the other end a rundown of what I had just done. I squirmed a little more, maneuvering the steak knife into my hand. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the handle that I grabbed. I could feel the blade cutting into my skin, and I could feel the scissors pushing against my arm. I closed my eyes and took a deep a breath. I opened my eyes and began kicking at his legs. He momentarily lost his balance. I took that moment and was able to get my hands out from under me by moving them to the left. His hand slipped off my back and he fell on top of me. I quickly flipped the knife around in my hands so that I was holding the black handle. He braced his hands on the table and was about to push himself back up when I started repeatedly stabbing the steak knife into him. I was only going to count to five and then stop and push him off, but in my anger I lost count and continued stabbing him.

When I realized he wasn’t fighting to get up anymore, I shoved his body off of me. I took a few deep breaths before I got up myself. I dropped the knife and looked around the room. The man I had shot was lying on the floor. He had a hand pressed to his chest. Blood was bubbling out of his mouth. His lungs were filling with blood, and he was struggling to breathe. I picked up the gun and shot the man a second time. This time, I didn’t miss his cranium. I put the gun in the waistband of my pants. I moved back over to the table. I rolled over the man slumped on top and began rifling through his pockets. I pulled out a set of keys and pocketed them. Then I slid the picture off the table. I folded it in half and slid it into my pocket with the keys. I looked around the room before I left. It was time to go clear my name. I didn’t slaughter my family; they were still alive.