When I walk long distances, I pay a price.
It’s a relatively minor one: an ache in my hip that sends tentacles down to my knee. It’s an annoyance, mostly. Sometimes it makes it hard to fall asleep.
I feel it after I take an hour’s walk on the beach on Sunday mornings, toes sinking down into cool sand or sliding over slick kelp. I get ready for these excursions knowing I’ll hurt afterwards, but the long line of sand along the shoreline is more than worth the price.
I know the roots of my aching hip: 15 years of studying ballet. My toes point out without me trying, and I carry my weight on the outer edges of my feet. Walking with that stance twists my hip in its socket. It makes a loud pop when I twist it back.
Sometimes, I try to think about my alignment when I walk. I consciously try to rotate my hip.
But I have to think about every single step.
Is my puny effort of will worth it? Will a few minutes of concentration do anything against decades of muscle memory? Can I really change how I journey through the world with a little willpower?
I’ve been thinking about healing lately. My family has been talking about habits we formed as parents and children back when I was too little to know what “dysfunction” meant. When I talk to my sister over the phone, I hear the hope in her voice, and in mine, that we can all relate differently, that we can journey together in new ways.
It’s been a few months of talking now, and my first flush of enthusiasm has run out. At the beginning, I felt excited to talk about hard stuff out loud. I felt freed from shame and secrecy and people-pleasing. I felt triumphant and brave and gutsy.
But when you finally admit that you wish the past had gone differently, you find grief rushing in. It’s like a law of physics: the harder you suppressed anger or sadness or dismay, the more it demands attention NOW…
Won’t you join me over at SheLoves to read the rest?