I am very limited in my abilities. It's true, I am creative - to a point. I am good with words, but I am not 'crafty'. I don't have that 'flair' to make stuff. I can cook, but I'm not competent enough to host a fancy dinner party. I mean, we won't starve, but I won't be publishing any cook books any time soon. I am OK at tennis, but I am seriously erratic and I am more bad than good, so that leads me to 'OK'. I am fairly musical, meaning I learnt the piano and cello for years but never got really good (in part because of a senile music teacher who taught me Christmas carols throughout the year). I can sing, but not well enough to do anything with it. It's true that I was a pretty competent actress through school and University, but I don't know where that girl went.
So, you see, I haven't truly challenged myself to do anything new in a long time... Unless you count motherhood, but I think of that as something that was brewing deep within me from the time I was a zygote and it isn't a challenge so much as a need, a want - a dream fulfilled. Sure, being a mommy raises challenges every day, but I know I can cope with them. I have no option really.
I think 'athletic' is about as far down the list of adjectives to describe me as possible. Maybe somewhere near 'tanned'. I am not athletic. I have never had any desire to do anything which requires flat shoes. In truth, I haven't ever even given it a chance. As a kid, my tennis teacher told my mother that I as 'uncoordinated' - and that was that. In my head, sports of all kind went out the window. Nice, hey? Teachers wield enormous power.
I have always marveled at people who can run. There is something incredible about the power and the determination to move at such speed purely for enjoyment. I have tried to run many times with personal trainers, outdoors, indoors, with James, with friends. It never felt good. I hated it. I always felt like my heart was about to explode out of my mouth and I would die - just die - in all sorts of miserable agony. In the latter part of 2009, I made an attempt at running. I had worked with a trainer for several months at that stage. Still, the running felt HARD and unnatural.
My goal for 2010 was to learn to run 5 kilometres. I set it as a personal goal and challenge. I even tweeted it so that it became a public goal. I always try harder at things when there are people who might potentially deride me or be disappointed if I fail.
I did it yesterday. I ran 5 kilometers in 32 minutes and 30 seconds. It hurt. I struggled. I felt close to cardiac arrest for about 5 minutes afterwards, but I did it. Now I want to do it in 30 minutes and feel good. I think I can.