Ups and Downs

Have you ever had one of those weeks full of low points and high points? I did. What they were is less important to me than what I did with them. When Wednesday was bad, I told my son and daughter about what I was going through and how I found the silver lining in the day. Our new Roomba arrived. Our old one, which we bought in 2016, if I remember correctly, died on us a month ago. We really needed a new Roomba. It arriving Wednesday was a relief, even if it didn’t get to work until late in the day. Immediately, the tiles were different. Smooth as porcelain glaze!

(For the record, Wednesday was bad because the toilet broke, and all my effort only seemed to break it more rather than fix it. It was a smelly, discouraging day.)

Thursday I visited my cardiologist to review the results of my stress test. “You aced it!” Dr. Kumar said. Those were his exact words and emotions, and he is not one for emotions with his patients, so I’m really happy with the results. I’m clear to do whatever exercise I want, which was also good to learn. Not that I’m ready to take up HIIT classes or anything more than the walking/cycling/hiking that I’m doing now, but it felt good to get the go-ahead anyways.

I also received other good news, but I want to wait to talk about that more later. The point was talking about it to my kids. (I feel weird using that term – one’s a teenager and the other’s in graduate school!) I wanted to show them that life can be down one day, but that it usually improves. There is a light at the end of the tunnel and the night is always darkest before the dawn.

Last week, as a family we hiked to the top of Enchanted Rock one day and to the bottom of Gorman Falls the next. Both trails were some of the more challenging ones I’ve encountered in Texas. Up and Down. You get them both on the trail and in life. It’s cliché to say it’s what you do with them that matters, but I think it’s cliché for a reason. There really is truth in it. As my football coach said years ago, “Every player gets knocked down. It’s what you do after getting knocked down that’s important.” He then probably yelled at me to get off my ass and go tackle someone. I’m not going to yell at my adult children to go tackle somebody. Neither one of them play sports for starters. But I do think it’s important to show them Moms and Dads have rough days, too, and that’s okay. We wake up and try again the next day.

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