I Am…

For years, I saw myself negatively through the pictures others portrayed of me.

I was the non-athletic sister.  I was the dark one, with the shorter hair and the darker eyes and the bigger nose.  I was the quiet one with the fewer friends, the one who got picked on all of the time.  I was the skinny, short, boring one.  When I was in grade school, I was the girl from the projects who had the gray hair in front, “her” sister,  the one who walked to school and didn’t bring her lunch. In high school, I was the dark skinned girl on the dance team, “his” girlfriend, the one who needed the bigger costume to cover my bigger breasts and behind.  I feel like I’ve been in a constant battle for my identity for years.  And, it wasn’t until a moment of desperation knocked me on my back, that I realized I have still lived under those images.  Saying that I was ready to break free would be an understatement.

I was teased a lot for being an “overachiever” so I learned very quickly to “slack off” in order to be liked.  This attitude made me AFRAID to succeed.  Combined with the thought of believing there were certain things I’d never be able to do (because I wasn’t THAT sister), I realized I had been trapped under the preconceived notion that I would NEVER be an athlete (I’m a dancer and not one that does a lot of tricks and regardless of how my dad always tried to make me feel good about myself by “calling” me an athlete when I constantly complained about not getting the family basketball gene, I still didn’t consider myself athletic) and that REAL “athletic” things (you know, lifting REAL heavy weight, running, swimming, playing a sport) were out of my reach.  I’m almost 40.

Not only was all of this paralyzing mentally, it was paralyzing physically.  I started psyching myself out.  When it came time to run, I honestly couldn’t move my body.  I felt like I weighed a ton.  The excuses started flowing.  My eating got off balanced.  I stopped sleeping well at night.  I heard the jeers and whispers of yesteryears, the pain of never being “that girl” that I wanted to be, the wasted dreams and mistakes and….

…..Good Lord….I had to get a grip.  I had fallen.  And I couldn’t get up.

I did what any sane person would do.  I registered for a half marathon.  And then for a 5K obstacle course.  And then for the Warrior Dash.  And then agreed to train for the Tough Mudder.  And started taking swim lessons.

And then I fell again.  Because, once again, I didn’t believe I could do it.

I am NOT a lot of things.  But everything I’m NOT, made me everything I AM.

I’m Tasha Martinear Edwards and I AM an athlete.  I believe, whole heartedly, that I can do anything I put my heart and soul into and I am committing TODAY to giving my best.  I am not my past.  I am “THAT GIRL.”

What’s your proclamation today?  Is your picture of yourself clear?
What is your I AM?

Elevate your life,
Tasha

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