Thoughts of Grandpa

Now I want my family to know I am not intending to make anyone cry... but it could happen if you continue to read this post.

Next month marks the 2 year anniversary since my Grandpa Harris passed away. He was such an incredible man and I miss him often.

The morning I found out he passed, I immediately started to cry... as I laid there sobbing I thought of how important he was and how devastating his passing was to me and everyone who knew and loved him.

After about 15 minutes of crying I realized I had a couple of choices: I could continue to cry until I felt ready to go over to my grandma's where my family was gathering, I could get up right then and go over and cry with everyone else, or I could stop crying and put my sadness into a run. I decided to get up, put on my running shoes, and hit the pavement at 6:45am, in the darkness and chilly weather, and run through my pain.

I had only been running for a couple of months but I had started to make improvements. I had been running an average of 11 minute miles and was working on being able to run 2 miles consecutively without stopping. On this morning, as I was finishing the first mile, the sun was really starting to rise. I started to cry, but then told myself that I had plenty of time to cry when I was done.... right now I was running and focusing on all of the joy in my life... all of the joy that my grandpa brought into it.

I picked up the pace and really started to push myself. The rest of my run was a blur, as I pushed myself as much as I could. When I got home, I looked at my watch and it was sub 22 minutes... no walking and both my miles were less than 11 minute miles. It was in this moment that I knew I loved running... I knew I loved fitness.

In the past I have not always dealt with grief and stress in the most positive of ways. I really think that this moment marked a turning point for me. I believe my grandpa was a part of me changing my life for the better and I will always be grateful to him for that.

Today, as I winded down in my hot yoga class, during the last 5 minutes of stretching, the song "Landslide" by Fleetwood Mac was played by my instructor. I cannot hear that song without thinking of him (it was one of the songs in the slide show at his funeral). I immediately began to smile and think of everything wonderful about him. There's a move called "camel" that is a full backbend and it is intended to open up your heart chakra, generally making you feel overwhelmed with emotion. I started to tear up but it was not tears of sadness; only tears of joy.

It made me feel good to reflect on all of the good times we shared and how grateful I am to be his granddaughter.

A blurry picture of me and my grandpa in 1994
Happy February everyone! Take care of your heart and your loved ones this month (and always)!


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