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School, Pain, and Grit

Over the last two weeks, I have experienced leg pain like never before. Sitting, standing, walking, and nothing gave me comfort. 4 Advil tabs a night and I might get a good night's sleep. Two weeks ago, we started back at school. I guess I could chalk it up to that, but still, I should be better after having knee surgery 12 weeks and 2 days ago.

Then today happened! This is just how my brain works, so I apologize to my Dr and all other doctors when I say this-I thought- If I am in pain when walking, sitting, laying down, and standing, then I may as well hurt while running. So, I did it. I took off and ran three 100m jogs. Not too bad. My brain immediately yelled at me-get a freakin mile in. I had to listen. I mean, if anyone really knows the way I work, I can be pretty stubborn when it comes to my brain telling me something. It may have been the slowest mile that I have ever run, but I still did it. I may have been in pain, and it may have felt a little awkward, but I did it.

As soon as I crossed into my driveway, I lost it. God just flooded me with the thought of so many who are hurting, and they feel stuck, almost like they can't take off in fear of the pain taking them out. I watch students walk in and out of my school every day with burdens and pain so great that it would crush us, if it were revealed to us. One day they are going to grow up, and this is my advice to them:

Do it anyway! The pain may never leave. The pain may be there when you are walking, sleeping, sitting, standing, so live this life giving your very best, anyway. You can't take away the hand that you have been dealt, but by God you can smile while playing. You can love those the way you wanted to be loved when you were a kid. You can be that teacher, pastor, mom, wife, dad, husband, leader, or friend that you always wanted to have. Don't let the pain of yesterday, or today, cripple you under a fear that was designed to make you less than what God created you to be.

To my fellow educators:

Every day you encounter a student that leaves you wondering about the life the live outside of school. Give them what they need-structure, knowledge, accountability, and unconditional love. This way, you can live everyday smiling and loving your vocation because someone will one day be able to look back and tell people that they were able to cope with their pain because you were that saving grace for them. You may be the very person that gives them hope for a better life.

Ha! All of this because of a 1-mile run! I hope it blesses you and encourages you to stay gritty.

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