Saturday, March 21, 2009

Keep on keeping on

Some days, it's hard to hang on. It seems so cold and isolated out there. Hanging on takes every bit of strength. The trail is rough, and letting go means giving up.

Some days, the snow is so deep, and the dogs are tired from slogging through and breaking trail. It's hard to think of keeping on. Or even getting up.

Some days, life is like running dogs on a rough patch of trail. One beautiful thing about running dogs is, when you're on a good trail with lots of twists and turns, there's no time to think. There is no choice but to be in the moment, right then, on every twist and turn with the team. No time for regrets or worry about the future. And if you tumble or slip up, well then there's definitely not time for regret or worry - you hang on with every bit of strength you can muster and get dragged - sometimes through stifflingly cold snow or a wet puddle. And, let's face it: it sucks. It sucks more than anything you can think of in that particular moment.

And right when you think you can't possibly keep on keeping on, somewhere deep down comes a strength you didn't know you had and you hang on, pull up, pedal up hills. And the resistance builds muscle. And the muscle makes the next struggle seem easier. And before you know it, you're yarhooing down a hill, sighing with relief and beaming with pride that you made it!

We are all struggling in our own ways. Many I know struggle right now, whether financially, or personally. I struggle too. But one thing I find distinctly American is our tenacity, resiliance, and strength - our ability to proudly, fiercely endure despite challenges, to persevere despite adversity.

This week, a job fair in Cleveland brought 5,000 people seeking work! They stood in a line that wrapped around the building for hours in the cold, hoping to find a decent paying job and a fresh start. A local janitorial job brought 800 applicants!

Many are down trodden, without work. Hard times have come to the midwest, and much of this country.

But I am proud of a people who will stand in the cold for a job and a chance to make an honest living and a fresh start. The trail is tough, but we must hang on. Our time will come.

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