I am about to declare my complete nerd status to the entire world. I have never been known for my physical prowess. I was the kid that always got picked last for teams in gym class. Sitting in a quiet corner while reading a book always seemed more heavenly to me than kicking some ball around.
As I get older, I realize the increasing need to become more physically active. Hence, this weekend I got on a bicycle for only the second time in about 25 years. It was not pretty. I was even given the moniker of "worst bicycle rider in the world" by my husband. He did follow that up though by saying that he still loved me. : )
I cannot even begin to tell you how frightening it was to get on (and try to stay on) that bike. My heart was pounding insanely while I held on to the handle bars with a vise grip. I was especially anxious when I rode by any pedestrians or other bicyclists on the trail. My biggest fear was that I would hurt someone. At one point, there were two pedestrians walking by, and instead of speeding up to go by them, I slowed down too much, lost my balance, and literally fell at their feet! Pretty humiliating. Even worse, I landed on my knees, severely scraping my left knee. Of course, it just so happens that it is the left knee that had major surgery performed on it about a year and a half ago to remove a very large, benign tumor. I landed right on my scar and it was quite painful.
After my fall, I really, really wanted to turn around and go home. I was sweaty, exhausted, embarrassed, and in pain. My natural inclination is to quit in these types of circumstances and to avoid it altogether in the future. However, I started thinking about all the ERPs I've ever done. Bike riding seemed so scary and terrible at that moment, but honestly, it was nothing in comparison to fighting OCD. I started to remember that every time I do an ERP for the first time, it is incredibly frightening, but then it gets a little easier with each subsequent attempt. I knew I had to keep biking. I didn't want to disappoint my husband. I had been promising him for months that I would join him in bicycling. I didn't want to disappoint myself. Quitting is not an option, either in life or in fighting OCD. The best part, is that when you don't give up, you are usually rewarded with something beautiful at the end. Continuing to fight OCD has given me a much more joyful and meaningful life. Continuing to bike ride led me to a beautiful view off of the trail that I would never have seen had I turned around and gone home.
|I really love NH!|
Sometimes, we will get bloodied and bruised by doing our ERPs, but we can't give up! What beauty is awaiting you in your life if you continue to fight anxiety?