I am not a runner, but that doesn’t mean I am not in a marathon – marathon the length of life. In this kind of marathon, one doesn’t want to reach the finish line faster, it’s about continuously moving forward, with more grace, endurance, grittiness, compassion to those in this marathon and hopefully kindness and love, while also trying not to miss the things and people as you catch up with, level up, pass by and alas sometimes fall behind and slow your pace to catch a breath, but then you keep moving forward.
Within this one, life long marathon, we run smaller ones as well: a marathon to become more successful, be better off financially, to achieve goals, promotions, better relationships, to be better parents, to be better ourselves. Some people give up, other’s keep going and these kind of marathons are highly competitive and they are just as much about speed and end result as endurance! Some of us try to succeed and win at each one of them, others will be happy at successfully completing one or two, as long as they get going and endure the main marathon of life. Within all these marathons there is one type or a group of people who are in it, for the sake of experience, for the sake of just being in it, they may not have the right pace or any goals and they don’t need any and they make it look so easy. Those are the happiest group and in my eyes most sucessful. In my eyes just by that approach of participation and for the sake of experience and just being present in that very moment of each of their marathons – they won! These people win at the marathon and therefore at life. I always thrive to be that person, but sometimes I do lose sight of the importance of just participation and enjoyment of the moment and I start living the mode of what can, could or would be, if…
Thankfully, these days, I always snap out of it and focus on the present. It hasn’t always been that way though. A lot of my marathons were about survival and endurance and that my friends can be so distracting from being in the moment, because those moments you just don’t want to be in….
In my marathon, I survived domestic abuse by my mother, abandonment by my father, betrayal by close friends, survived domestic abuse by my ex-husband, I survived a decade of court battles by the said abuser over his desire to have custody over our son, even though he is incapable of holding full-time job or any consistent job, who lived in a deteriorated RV all year round and fed our son cold cheap hot dos day in and day out (he never won but he always dragged me through all this just out of spite and courts allowed this), survived loads of sexism, misogyny, xenophobia and simple hate. I made it through being employed and a full time, non traditional student while being a single mom of two little kids, went through poverty and being physically tied to a rural area, where I couldn’t put to use my now, two college education degrees, due to the fact that it is impoverished and jobs are just so scarce, because of the custody arrangement. Survived through unreliable, unfaithful and straight out useless partners, who tried to use me and still surviving through even though decent job that has nothing to do with my education but the one I absolutely hate.
However, today I am in all different kind of marathon, today my marathon is about the present moment, about my older kids who are growing way to fast, about the new little baby boy who reminds me every moment is a gift, by sweet and amazing new husband who I consider a partner and a friend these guys remind me every day how trully fortunate I am. I now have a handful of friends, but reliable and supportive handful it is, and a pursuit of my long time dream to do what I love and get paid for it. That passion is photography and while all these marathons of being a good mother, partner and friend and successful photographer are all hight competitive I have also discovered that the success of those depends on the consistent present in the moment, it’s about perseverance and experience, it’s about what is within your reach now – without this my marathon would have no meaning and would lead nowhere fast. I don’t want to reach the finish line in any these marathons any time soon.
Thank you for taking time to read this and may your marathon be fulfilling, rewarding and may you love being present in the moment and love to be part of it. If you are struggling to survive the present moment, may you have something to look forward to and may you have kind and supportive people running next to you to help you get through! Love to all.