For big things and little things. Important occasions and seemingly unimportant ones.
When we show up, we're available for something to happen.
I was out running this weekend and a memory made it's way through my head. The same one that has traversed my mind many times before. Probably because it's kind of like a Hallmark moment now that it's just a rerun.
It's from a couple of years ago, when my friends and I were doing a run together. I was doing the half-marathon course. But my friends...this was their first full. And that was exciting! And huge!
So I ran my half and relaxed for a bit before I took off on my second mission. I went into impromptu mode, flagging down a police car and asking them to take me to go find my friend. I had imagined this scene in my head, almost as many times as I'd watched similar ones on the Biggest Loser. You know, the scenes where the final contestants are running the marathon, and they find different loved ones at certain mile markers to join them in their journey. That's what I was off to do, to find one of my best friends and pass a couple of miles with her. I just hadn't thought of details such as how I would find her or how I would get there. Hence the need for the policeman. A few miles up the road I got out and it wasn't long before I saw her running toward me. I remember feeling a little apprehensive. I mean this girl had just run 23 miles and I had no idea what her needs would be. Did she want me to chit-chat with her? Did she just need a silent supporter by her side?
With a few yards between us, our eyes met. Hers immediately welled up and tears started slowly falling. Instinctively I asked her what was wrong, was she hurt, what did she need. But the answer was...nothing. Nothing was a matter. She didn't need anything. She was just glad I showed up.
23 miles of running will do that to you, apparently. The physical exhaustion couples with the emotional exhaustion and an unexpected friend showing up results in tears. And it was a special moment. Because it was just the two of us, no one else in sight, sharing this journey that she had worked so so hard for. We spent the next 3 miles making small talk.
We are bonded because of these 3 miles. This was something unique, individual, and so not your every day that we shared together. I offered something to her that she couldn't give herself- company. And she let me. She let me in on her journey.
I didn't have to show up. But I am so glad I did. I am more of a person because I did. Our friendship has a lot more meaning because I did. As cheesy as it sounds, my life experience is more because I did.
That's what I was thinking about on my run last weekend. About showing up. And don't worry, I'm not preaching to you. I'm talking to me- the girl who tries to talk herself out of showing up to anything and everything. Literally. Dead serious. Not kidding.