I went our walking earlier today. Put on my snow shoes and attempted to trudge across campus. I needed an hour run on the rec center indoor track and then Black Cat (Mex restaurant) for a Burrito.
Got about 2/3 of the way. That's when the wind ripped my nice rain cover off my backpack and carried it far into the distance. Something inside of me gave up and I turned back for the apartment.
I got back indoor and proceeded to knock the snow out of every part of my apparel. I was coated in white, my snow shoes were packed in ice, and that wasn't nice (a small rhyme there).
While I was doing a few meaningless things, my mind started to whirl. I'm master competitor. I have braved the worst in weather conditions. Hey Mark Carroll, are you out there? Remember the year we were at peak elevation at the Rattlesnake Trail 50K in West Virginia and that bad boy storm moved in? Lightning strikes and we hid out in those caves? Or John Barney, how about the time we did that winter storm Huff 50K in Indiana? Our feet were digging post holes as we smashed through the snow.
Those stories are just the start. We did many crazy events, but we never let the conditions dictate the outcome. The key to it all is to embrace Mother Nature, not fight the majesty of her power.
So, I started putting back on all the clothes I had stripped off. Some of it was still damp, but I didn't care. I bundled back up, set the headphones over my balaclava, popped the hood up, and marched back out the door.
This time, I leaned into the fury of the wind. I let it hold my weight and acknowledged the raw power. I let it come into and through me. I said "yes you are, here I am. I wish to become part of you. I'm not here to reject your prowess. You own the day, please allow me to pass through the portal you have created."
I let my muscles hang loose and I took easy, short steps. My feet slipped and the wind drove into me but in that moment, I became part of what nature had created. I was in the middle, accepted by the turmoil around me.
Many times, individuals will tell you they "braved the storm." But, I'll suggest we can't journey into the midst of a storm as brave; instead, we must be humble.