I’m in a very strange space, and a very curious time in my life. I am 42, and I have been very fortunate to know (all of) my grandparents very well. But times does not stop and it catches everyone.
As I write this, both of my grandfathers are very unwell. One is having his body slowly shut down, his life is draining and we are powerless. All we can do is watch. It’s been in slow motion for 3 weeks now.
The other, with a mild onset of dementia, had a his bowl removed this week to save him from cancer. His recovery is not going well.
These are two men, who I have looked up to all my life and have taught me a lot. They have stepped in when needed to protect me, and they have remained at my side and as a supporter even though my weekly visits drifted farther and farther apart. My life it seemed, got busy, first as a husband and later as a father. They understood.
Inspire and inspiration have become buzz words in the last year or so. If someone does something really well, or for a good cause…they are called inspirational. Here is my trouble with this. Is doing something for a good cause inspirational or just the right thing to do? And if someone else also takes up the charge because of that, did you inspire them or simply show them a way to make a difference?
Here is my true definition of inspire.
My Grandpa Turnbull, walking up the steps of a school in his early teens, asking to be registered so he could learn. Upon being laughed at and turned away, finding some books that would self teach him and learning the basics of math, language and science.
My Grandpa Flint, who despite battling his own emotions and demons, holding my hand and hugging me tight at my parents divorce hearing and telling me it would be okay…even though it was tearing him apart to see my sister and I hurting.
This is true “inspiration” to me, because these are things I think of when the going gets tough. How to succeed despite being told you can’t and worrying more about those around you. Caring enough to be a break water in the harbour. These things are inspirational to me because it forces me to make a change, or be a different person…not just a momentary action that dissolves in time.
Right now, things are tough and I am hurting, you might say even bleeding a bit. But I’ll get through this period of challenge and like my Grampa’s have done all their life, I will use it to make me stronger and a better person.
If you are reading this post, thank you for taking the time . This post means more to me then any PB, Race report or review I have written. Aside from my parents, these two gentlemen are a huge part of the reason I am here today. I hope that someday I can fill their shoes, but they are big shoes to fill.