Sunday, January 1, 2012

New challenges and new pursuits.

As I sit here at my computer after a long walk on the Turkey Creek Greenway, I look forward into the coming year with excitement and trepidation.  Over the holidays I have crossed over the AT at least four times and each time it has called my name.  During my last trip to Mom and Dad's I couldn't help but stop at the place where it crosses I-40 and get out to take a couple pictures for inspiration.  Think I'll make one of them my background for encouragement during what may become a very difficult year.
Steps to the Appalachian Trail at I-40 in Tennessee

Appalachian Trail sign
I would very much like to do the section of the AT this year that runs from Hot Springs to I-40 and goes by Max Patch.  I've heard so many cool stories about the beauty of Max Patch.  I also found out last week that my dad and his dad used to pick huckleberries up on Max Patch, so that makes it even more special.  That's my goal for this spring as I begin to think about things I want to do in the coming year.

I have a couple of concerns that are simply age and conditioning based.  I have picked up some of the weight I lost and so am feeling more sluggish than I did this time last year. I am now working to take it off again, but it's still a bit discouraging to think I allowed myself to do that again.  Along with the increased weight I have begun to feel reacquainted with some old enemies...not the least of which is pain in my hips--particularly my left one.  This pain is different than it was in the past and it has me a bit worried.  It hurts to go on long walks and even short hikes now and that cannot be a good thing.  However, I'm hoping that as I lose the extra pounds, that the pain in my hips will subside.  It did in the past.  So I'm working to that end.  At least that may provide me with some motivation for sticking to my diet and exercise plans.  I don't think I'd get very far on the AT with this hip feeling like it is right now.

I am however, excited about a whole new schedule at work this semester.  I will be teaching a 7 a.m. class and first block and therefore, will be done in the classroom by 10:00.  That doesn't mean I am free to leave at that time, but that may mean I am free to work out more in the weight room at school or on pretty days, go out for a walk or bike ride that I wouldn't have been able to do before.  I will still have lead teacher responsibilities including lots of observations, but I am still hopeful that I will be able to get outside when the weather breaks in the winter or on a regular basis in the spring.  I will also have plan with my dearest friend, Sharon, too, so I'm looking forward to that as well.

Another big milestone will happen for me this year.  This year marks mine and my husband's 25th wedding anniversary year, if we can hold it together that long.  It's a really hard time in our marriage right now, and I sincerely hope it doesn't come crashing down around us this year.  I know we both still love each other, but I am simply not sure I can continue to live with the drinking problem that is destroying the beautiful thing we have had in years past.  I guess I'm harder to live with now too as my body goes through some major hormonal changes--at least that's what he tells me fairly frequently.  I seem to live in a house with two men that don't like me very much, much of the time.  So, I'm not sure what the future holds in that regard for this year.  Time will tell, I guess.  Hence the trepidation.

So, 2012, here's to you!  I will stand firm on the grace of Jesus to carry me through whatever you have in store for me this year.  Let's do this thing!

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