This is one of my most favorite images Ive posted on Instagram. It was taken last year on a trip with my family to the Grand Canyon. When I looked at it, I smiled because I realized just how far Ive come.
When I think back on my past, I remember how I lived so long in chronic pain. I was afraid to live my life to the fullest because I was worried about what if. What if I make things worse or even more frightening, what if I get injured? I listened to everyone around me who told me Id never do this or never do that, and I let those critical spirits deter me from even trying to do anything to better myself. I was convinced that I was dealt a bad hand in life and that there was nothing I could do about it. So I just existed, barely moving my body while I turned to food, drugs, and alcohol to self medicate my pain. This only further lead to feeling like a loser, not to mention it wasn’t helping any of my symptoms. In fact, the inactivity was making me stiffer and less able to do simple things like bend over and touch my toes. I became dependent on drugs to make me feel normal and everything seemed to get worse not better.
At 27, I decided to start working out which lead to me to begin my fitness career. This by far was the best thing I had done in a long time for myself, but I still had a lot of pain and I was very careful with what I could and could not do with my body. I still had a lot of work to do if I wanted to be free of pain and realize my potential.
When I say that handstands changed my life, I mean that. The physical aspect of my #transformation is easy to post about on Instagram because its what people can see, but its the emotional and spiritual journey that has made the most impact on my life. Sure I can do handstands but really that isn’t the point. The point is, there was day that I let go of the past and I believed it was possible. I believed that I wasn’t too old or too broken to try. That was when it all changed for me.
Today, Im 44 years old doing things that my 24 year old body never dreamed of and that in itself made me realize just how far I’ve come. I can have a different ending to my story than what I believed it would be. It also made me understand that just because someone (white lab coat or otherwise) says something definitive about me, it doesnt make it fact. I get to decide what is a fact about my life. I have the power to change and so do you! Understanding this is something that I’m so passionate about sharing with others.
For me, at the age of 37 feeling like I would always have these “issues” I decided to try. Just try. Try to learn how to do a handstand. I know, it doesn’t seem life changing, but it was. As silly as it may seem to some, this decision empowered me to believe in myself. It allowed me to say yes to my dreams, and it allowed me to see that my story isnt finished yet. I am the author of my novel, and I get to decided how the rest of the book plays out.
Here I am at 44, standing (on my hands) at the top of the world realizing that truly anything you set your mind to is possible.
I encourage you to also reach for those dreams, whatever they are or however big they are. Start with just one thing and “try”.
Maybe you also have thoughts like me and dont believe you could never do a handstand? Would you like to? What’s stopping you? If you want to, I encourage you to start… today!
I believe in you!
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