Sometimes, I just want to stop

It’s time again. I honestly don’t have much precursor this time either. I almost didn’t participate today. But thoughts scrambled in my mind and the metaphoric topic wouldn’t go away. So here I am ladies. Sometimes it’s easier just to cut myself short. Go to the FMF party but maybe skip a week in writing. Sometimes it’s easier not to do. Just to refrain. But is that the right move in that moment? Is that healthy? Or even obedient? I don’t have the answers, but as usual, I know the questions. 
So here’s my take on Lisa-Jo’s R A C E


She’s chanting me on, pushing me forward.

 The concrete ladder-hill grows steeper and steeper. My inhales sharper, my exhales shorter. I don’t want to keep grasping. I want to stop. “You’re doing it. You’re almost there Leigh.” I don’t have energy to think, I’m just panting, feel like I’m barely moving. She’s jogging backwards for goodness sake.

But soon, it’s over. The ladder’s last rung has sounded in my ears, as loud as my beating blood pressure. Rising. Arrived. I reached the top. She cheers. Encourages. Tells me she knew all along I could do it. 

  • It wasn’t a race. 
  • There were no other participants save her and I. 
  • But I felt like it was a marathon. When in reality, we probably didn’t even jog more than a mile. 
  • And she’s a runner. An actual marathon runner. Did I tell you that?

The thing is…I want to stop so much of the time. 
I hate races. I’ve never been good at running. My lungs close, my ribs cage my organs in, I wheeze so audibly even animals might wonder who’s dying over there. 
I’m not good at them. 
And I feel even less able when even the smallest exertions of that proportion get me folded over. 

Racing makes me feel inadequate. And truth be told – I already feel that way most of the time. I don’t need a new task to get me there. Dwelling on it all. 

I’m the heckler in the corner shouting BOO. Even with the accolades of amazing friends – their knowledgable support and full-hearted compassion and understanding…I’m still drowning out their beautiful voices with ugly, spitting words of quit-while-you’re-behind.

Always behind.

It’s how I can feel…..

   Unaccomplished. Late-blooming. Unconditioned for the tasks that matter.

Sure, there are things I can do. Things that come easier. That I enjoy. 

But that comparison creeps in: 
Yeah, but in the scheme of things, does this really matter? What about that over there? THAT seems to matter more. And you can’t do it, can you? Hmmm, told you so.

The smirks and snickers cackle out the exhortations and bravos. 

I hate that they do.
It’s just another way to make panting up that hill all the more difficult. All the more plea-full, my heart beats to stop. 

Please can’t I just stop? Move on to something on my level? I can’t do this.

It’s the scary. The stricken illness of fear. When the will to try to run with endurance the race marked out for me is nowhere to be tangibly held. 

Because the taunting fills ears and beats the drums of fickle heartbeat.


*Photo credit: Funchye at Flickr

14 Comments on “Sometimes, I just want to stop”

  1. Thanks for sharing! I can definitely relate to lacking the will to run! I quoted the same verse from Hebrews in my blog post today. If I were to ever think of running our spiritual race in the same way as I think about running physically, I would get completely overwhelmed – I HATE running! I pray that God gives you the will and the strength and the courage to run today and that you hear His voice of truth and love encouraging you much louder than those words of accusation – whether internal or external. Blessings on you today! 🙂


  2. Thank you for sharing your heart. Your honesty is a blessing. I grew up with those voices telling me I couldn't. They aren't as loud now, but they are still there, in the background. They are a lie.

    I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.
    -Philippians 4:13

    Blessings to you!


  3. Hey Leigh,

    I am so proud of you for stretching yourself out of your comfort zone, and doing something that doesn't come naturally (from what I am inferring from your post) in terms of running…I am so not a runner at all – for various physical reasons, so I am so impressed 🙂 I can relate to not listening to the voices of the evil one that calls us to comparison and feeling less than…it is so hard at times to hear His still small voice of love and truth cheering us on sometimes…Your writing style is clear, lovely and honest like you…Wishing you a blessed weekend and that your thumb continues to heal.


  4. Oh Dolly. I appreciate your words and cheering on. 🙂
    Honestly though, no – I am not a runner at all. This story was in the long-ago past (a few years long ago). It just came into my thoughts when this topic came up. My friend, she's the runner. She loves it. Truly. I do not. 🙂 This memory is more about her dedication to cheering me on in whatever I was able to do, or tried to do – no matter how “good” I was at it.
    Be impressed with the girl who runs marathons and runs in mornings or nights and stays dedicated to that enjoyment. Haha

    But on a more serious note, while I wish no one to understand the voices of evil circling inside, knowing that you understand through your own experiences helps in knowing I'm not alone. And God is so faithful to help us retune our ears time and time and time again to His decibel of truth. He's so amazing.

    Thank you friend. You are fast become a dear friend and I look forward to each opportunity to know you better. You bless me so.


  5. Leigh, this post is beautiful. I have entertained the voices of “you can't”, “you won't”, “you're not good enough” for so long. Many days I feel as if I am still running that race, trying to outrun the voice of the evil one. But I know that God's voice is louder, and, if I may, I hear Him saying to you, “Come on my daughter, you can do it. And I am so proud of you.” I will be back to visit again!


  6. Barbie – it does my spirit such benefit to hear your wisdom and encouragement. Thank you so very much for coming by. You visiting again will only humble and delight me more. I so appreciate you my #FMFparty sister. 🙂 (p.s. Thank you for the words from Him. Seriously.)


  7. Charissa – what sweet-filled words to say! Thank you so much. I'm completely excited you found me from FMF. 🙂 Your presence here is not only welcome, it enriches.


  8. Oh Diana…how I miss you!! Know that you are thought of and remembered. I hope so much that we can reconnect soon. I just saw your sweet post today (I'm SO very tardy! Please forgive me!). You are a blessing lovely.


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