Monday, January 21, 2013

Celebrating Dr. King

Somehow it is already the third week of January.  It is a beautiful sunny but cold Monday here on the Cape.  The day is quiet, and not because of the Patriots' loss to the Ravens last night (well, maybe a bit of that IS the reason....) but more so I believe due to the holiday; the celebration of the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  This year my company is open but our CEO sent out a note this morning asking to take time to reflect on the great work Dr. King did and noting next year we will have this day off as a holiday.  I do have to mention that Dr. King did his graduate work at Boston University, a fact my alma mater is quite proud of.

As I watch various social media sites this morning, I am struck but the vast number of quotes attributed to Dr. King and I cannot help but be humbled by the passion of this one man.  I admit it has caused me to stop and reflect a bit about myself.  What am I doing to make this world a better place?  Or what can I do?

So, I start with my acceptance to a doctoral program in Health Education.  Another degree?  More school?  Yes, many folks may think I am totally insane, even more so when they find out this degree is one being borne on my own dime.  However I really like school, always have.  I love learning, meeting new people via classmates, professors and administrators (Yes, even them!).  This wonderful country I call home is in need of folks who really want to make a change when it come to health care and its delivery.  I want to be part of that change and believe this degree is one of the foundation blocks I need to do so. I have a long road ahead before I am bestowed with the title of "Doctor" but I am ready to travel!

2013 will be a year of pushing the limits both mentally (new job, more school) and physically (Another Tough Mudder??? Oh yeah - there is that whole 5 year anniversary thing too!).  I finished the 2013 Disney Goofy Challenge last weekend. (That is a 1/2 marathon on Saturday followed by a full 26.2 on Sunday).  Crossed that off my list.  Still trying to maintain my meditation practice which was my "one new thing" for January.  I thought snowboarding might be my new thing for February but given our weather forecast, perhaps I will be crossing that off my January list.

I am adjusting to a new employer and a new living situation that takes me away from many people that I love and many things I take for granted (Target less than 5 miles from my house...).  In turn I am rewarded with beauty of the beach in winter and the stillness of the "off-season".  Every once in a while the stillness gets the best of me and I allow the bit of fear that creeps up my spine and into my head to pose the questions I prefer not to answer: What if my next mammogram is not clear?  What will I do if confronted with the word cancer once again?  Where would I seek treatment and what would that treatment be?

Taking a few deep breaths, I let the questions hang in the air in front of me and then I allow them to dissipate.  I do not know the answers and hope I never do have to find them.   I refocus, I embrace the day.  I remind myself that I cannot control everything and what will be, well, will be.  I think of my grandfather who just turned 90 years old and still makes me laugh with his quick wit and small jokes.  To me, he is someone who lives for the day and I can only hope to reach the milestone birthday he just celebrated.  Meanwhile I live my crazy life and will march onward and deal with whatever cards I am dealt but hey life, a couple of aces would not hurt!!!

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