Moving to Europe has made me a healthier and stronger person. While I’ve lived around the globe, I’ve never had such a physical lifestyle as I do in Germany. The first six months, I loved it. I thought to myself, oh yeah, I’m totally a Euro girl now. Look at me, carrying my toilet paper around town like a pro. (Because I walk everywhere – to run errands, get groceries, toiletries, etc.)
But, there were many days when I could barely make it up the three flights of stairs to our apartment door. And, that was without carrying any groceries. Taking my kids to and from the bus stop was all the energy I had some days.
After the initial excitement wore itself down, I started to loathe the lifestyle. I felt tired, sluggish, and annoyed all the time. My diet was crap and I became a hermit so I didn’t have to face defeat on the stairs. I gained weight, making my clothes too tight and myself look like a four month old pregnant lady. I WAS MISERABLE.
That was not too long ago, maybe eight months. But, it’s when I hit the bottom and knew I had to make some changes. My psyche depended on it. And so did my thighs.
I got a bike. It felt like freedom. Neighborhood errands seemed lighter and more doable. My legs and feet didn’t ache as much when I returned home. I was still huffing and puffing at the top of the stairs, but at least I didn’t have to sit on the couch without moving a muscle for 30 minutes before I had enough strength to make my way to the bathroom.
IT WAS THAT BAD, Y’ALL.
So, on Monday, after I dropped the kids at the bus stop and I made my way home, imagine what it felt like to have this little experience –
As I march up the three flights of stairs to open the door of my European flat, I am not panting. In fact, my steps are fast, almost in a jog. After months of effort, I feel the strength and endurance I’ve been longing. I stand facing the door, relishing in my champion moment, and slowly turn the key. In the split second of walking through the threshold, the momentum is lost as I stare at the mess in the hallway. I turn left, and notice the sun rising over the lake. Smiling, I peer over the enchanted waters from my balcony.
Life is good, my friends. You just have to find what makes it good for you.
Until tomorrow –
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