You know those Where's Wally books where you need to find Wally in a crowd and at some point your critter draws a circle around the Wally so the book is only good for recycling? Well I feel a bit like ol' Wally on a page of so much detail that no one can find me. I feel like I am neglecting my mom, my sisters and my friends and this holiday I was looking so forward to, got swallowed up by studying work and training.
So let me break it down into pages. Page 1 is my training for my Ironman 70.3 race which is in 15 more sleeps. Training through the winter is not for sissies and trying to stay healthy and injury free a constant worry. I think the way I felt after not finishing my race in East London this year was pretty apparent. It was a massive emotional and psychological kick in the teeth for me but like all of the really tough shit we go through, wisdom and perspective eventually gained was huge. At the time I felt like a total failure and I felt deserted by the God I wanted to show off. I had worked so very hard and trusted so very much. When I look back now I do see God's hand in it and I stand amazed at myself to come out of a severe hyperthermic state and start the bike 30 minutes later with my body at just 35 degrees and last out of 3000 people. The 1st 7kms the only person in sight. I remember the broken people at the side of the road crying knowing that they were never going to make cut off and cycling past them. I would finish on my own terms and I would cycle that whole damn 90kms. Now for this race I have that under my belt. Risking such massive disappointment again is huge and scary and the what ifs are there. But how can I not? I want that medal and I want to finish what I started. I only started the new training program 4 weeks ago and it has been intense. I am looking forward to being a normal person that exercises 5 to 6 single sessions a week.
Dilbert my Dystonia. Ah what a chop he is. I hate him a whole lot. My parents used to say we may not say hate but dislike is too bland. Next month is the 3 year mark and it is somehow randomly significant. When it first started I did not think I could do one more day. Now I have done over 1000 days. Some are good ones and some are so painful which makes speech so difficult. The meds I took initially when I tried everything landed up making it worse and some of them made me so suicidal. I did not talk about it as blog posts on: ''I want to die, every day I want to die'' seem a little bleak. I mailed someone who I thought was a friend who had battled depression himself and he said he would get back to me and he never did. I spoke about some pretty black stuff and shared my vulnerabilities, I even regretted pressing send but it seems he didn't actually give a crap so it was all good. I have had to forgive him but I will never trust him and I know he is not my friend at all. The upper jaw clenching started later and damaged the nerves to my ear and gave me horrible toothache. The botox helped loads and is only wearing off now. August 11th I get my next shots. I have learned to live with Dilbert, hope junkie will always hope it goes away or they find a cure but for now its OK.
My studies...Remember when I wanted to quit. How I just couldn't face doing another 2 years on top of my 4 years? Well something happened as the theory became more practical and we had to visit various NGOs. I was renewed and refreshed and remembered why I started studying social work in the 1st place. God has blessed me with the gift of leadership, of organizational skills and of compassion. When I put these all together with the right training I know I can do some great work in my community. I have found the place where I am going to do my prac and I am so excited it makes my heart race. I know it will be tough and sad and not glamorous but it is a great fit. A safe haven for kids, 20 boys aged 8 to 18 who live there permanently and girls who come during the day for a meal or a bath or to do washing or homework. Maybe one day a place for the girls can be created. I want to work with families and kids so this is right up my ally. My supervisor social worker there seems like a great guy who also studied through Unisa so he gets it. I am TOTALLY amped which is why doing all my assignments this holiday has been just fine.
Lastly my God. This should be a whole separate post but I have too much work coming up to take time to blog. It has been good and bad as I have discovered there are thousands of left wing Christians out there just like me. People who are reluctant to even call themselves Christians based on the massive hurt and destruction the right wing Christians have done. We don't want to be put in the same category. I know some question my relationship, my faith, my belief system. Questions are good. I do not have all the answers. I just don't know a whole bunch of stuff but neither does anyone else have all the answers. I am not going to tell anyone their beliefs are wrong. Their interpretation of God is wrong. I am not going to decide who gets into heaven. I am certainly not going to say who is worthy but I am going to follow the greatest commandment of them all. Well I am going to try my best. I will love you God, with all my heart and all my soul and all my might and I will love my neighbour (might not like them) as I love myself. I will not mistreat them or deny them any basic rights like who they can marry or love or live or work or whether they become parents or not. Cherry picking from the bible? Disobedience to God's word? Yes I have heard them all but I am the eternal sentimental romantic so for me it has to come down to love and my gut. I follow the heart of God. Had Jesus followed the law at the time and not the heart of the father we would not have a new testament and the prozzies and the sick and the so called scumbags of the time would have never known this Jesus that I follow. It does leave me feeling alone and not sure if I can still go to church as I do not have the option of churches like they have in the US that are openly gay friendly. I love my church and I love the people but I almost feel like that silent bully who stands by on the outside doing and saying nothing if I go. Like I condone the refusal of equal rights for all. Only lefties who love Jesus would understand. So at aged 44 after being a Christian for almost 16 years I have come right back to the place I started. Knowing nothing except divine unconditional love and acceptance and that feeling of fuzzy safe warmth untainted by anyone elses opinion or interpretation. Its delicious!