Thursday, December 31, 2009

Our Precious Human Body

As athletes we prize our bodies. We nourish them carefully. We train them rigorously. Our bodies take us on adventures.

But...they are only on loan to us for this lifetime, as it were. The expiry date isn't marked on our packaging, but it's there nonetheless. For all of us. Every. Single. Person.

I was recently in conversation with a women who had spent a lot of time with her mother in the last months before her mother's death. At one point, about a week before she died, her mother said, "I can feel it. I can feel that I'm starting to leave my body." For the last three days of her life, her mother no longer wanted to be covered by sheets and blankets. Her body was hot. As her organs shut down, the heat of her body was rising to the surface, warming her.

It reminded me, the woman told me, how temporary our bodies ultimately are.

Temporary, fleeting, finite--while we cannot become so attached to our bodies that we can't psychologically sustain the setbacks of injuries or illness; it is also all the more reason to remember every day how precious it is. How lucky we are to have bodies that will run through the blinding snow (as I did this morning), or swim across a lake, or ski down a mountain, or stand in tree pose.

How lucky are we?

May all of you cross the threshold into 2010 with vitality, enthusiasm and an open heart!