Behind me lay 39 years of bad decisions and broken promises. Well, not all the decisions were bad but there have been a lot of bad decisions and a lot of broken promises.
It is really only in the past 12 years that I have gotten my act together. And, I slowly have begun to turn into the man that I wanted to be. I want to be the man that my daughter thinks I am. That is how I live my life. I live my life with purpose and direction. Always doing the right thing, making the responsible choice. Doing not what I want to do but doing what I think is the right example of Jordan.
Now that I sit here in front of my computer I think what did I do that was so wrong? And I find myself wondering if I should list it all? Should I bare my soul? Are my friends and family really ready to know the real me? The side of myself that only I know? The fact is I am not ready to self incriminate myself and I am sad that I can’t truly open up to anyone. But let’s make a vague list…Here it goes:
I have lied, cheated, stole, I abused substances, sat idle when I should have screamed out no! and screamed with the crowd when I should have shut up, I over indulged, I was greedy, I wasn’t a good brother to my fellow man, I followed orders and often only saw in black and white when I should have seen the grays. You get the idea…
I told you the list was going to be vague but have faith that I know what I did right and what I did wrong. And, to be honest making that list was more for my benefit and it was difficult in it’s own way.
I used to say things like I am having a morale dilemma but I no longer say that. In fact I never have morale dilemmas any more because if you always do what is right there is no dilemma. It sounds simple but it isn’t. In fact it is hard. But one thing is for sure doing the right thing isn’t easy and it wont make you popular but it will ensure I keep Jordan’s respect and it helps me actually be the man she thinks I am.
A friend of mine once said to me “The true measure of a man isn’t how many times he falls, but how many times he gets back up.” I wonder if he realizes the impact that had on me? I think that was about 9 years ago and I still remember it and use those words to live by. Not only do I live by it but I tell it to friends in tough times and I have even said it to my own daughter as she faces challenges of her own.
I used to run with music for motivation. I got motivation from lots of sources.
When Eminem says:
“You better lose yourself in the music, the moment,
You own it, you better never let it go
You only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow
This opportunity comes once in a lifetime yo”
How about when Eminem says:
Till the roof comes off, till the lights go out
Till my legs give out, can’t shut my mouth.
Till the smoke clears out – am I high? Perhaps
I’ma rip this shit till my bone collapse.
I also got motivated by 50 cent rapping:
Hate it or love it the underdog’s on top
And I’m gonna shine homie until my heart stop
I listened to everything to get motivation. Obviously as shown above I listened to rap. But I also loved Punk Rock like Social Distortion and the Ramones. How about Some phenomenal Rock and Roll the way only Bruce Springsteen can reach you? I also listened to Evercleer, The Foo Fighters, and Metallica. I think you get the idea.
I used to do my long run to the entire Joshua Tree Album. Which by the way I think may be one of the very best albums ever! It is a bold statement I know but yeah, I said it! Anyway, my long runs have gotten longer and now one album just doesn’t cover it anymore.
But A few months ago I stopped running with music. It was a challenge. it was then I realized the music was a crutch for me. Now, I am not saying it is a crutch for everyone but for me it was. I think at that point in my life I was running because I felt I had to. Now I run for me. I go for long slow runs I run the roads, the beach, clay paths, and wooded trails. I have begun to realize I enjoy my runs so much more when I can hear my breath and my foot striking the ground. I listen to the sounds of people, dogs barking, cars driving by, wild boar (pretty scary) in the woods. My mind wonders in all directions. Sometimes I can’t stop singing Donna summers songs and it drives me crazy! Sometimes I think about the future and the present. The tough runs are when I think of the past and what I have done and what I should have done… That is when I ask for forgiveness. I keep running on and I know I will go on tomorrow I will get back up and run again.