Friday, August 26, 2011

Whatcha got?

"Great gifts mean great responsibilities; greater gifts, greater responsibilities!” 
- Luke 12:48 (the Message)

I’ve been overwhelmed with feelings of gratitude lately. Thankfulness for my health, family, friends, and how incredibly blessed I am. Every day is a gift. Every run, bike, and swim is a dream to me. I can’t believe that this time last year I was in so much pain that I was finding it hard to function normally -- and now I’m training to race a half-ironman in 23 days.

Not only is my health great, I have an amazing family in Arkansas that has loved me through the lows. I moved back to Arkansas last July to train them. I moved into their house and took control of all their eating habits and movement. I took on the challenge of getting everyone to enjoy a healthier lifestyle and fell in love in the process. What started out as a client-trainer relationship years ago has become an incredible friendship and joy in my life. Every moment spent with them is a blessing. Yesterday, as I was training their teenage daughter, I kept thinking,  "I can’t believe that I get paid to do this”. Training is my passion -- I love, love, love the feeling of helping others push themselves to realize their potential as they reach their goals. I love seeing people change their lives for the good -- especially those I love. This family has become my family, loving and caring for me in ways I never thought anyone would do.

Then there is my family back home--all my brothers and sisters in Florida. I have always been so close to them. All 6 of my siblings are my best friends. In the sadness from losing Josh, we have become even closer. I hate that they are hurting so much, but I am so thankful that we have each other.

To add to my amazing life, my friends are incredible. Those that are here in Arkansas and those that are spread around the world. Women and men who have encouraged me through the painful months, loving me even when I was most difficult in my hormone crazed state during treatment. I finally understand what people mean when they say that you find out who your real friends are through the tough times.

Yes. I am totally blessed. I don’t take what I have for granted.

For some reason, God has blessed me unbelievably and I am beyond thankful.

Even my sickness has turned into a blessing because I have learned so much from the pain.

My prayer is that I don’t waste any of this. It would be such a shame to be given so much and not do anything with it all. I believe that God gives us all talents and resources for a reason. And it is our duty to develop our talents and gifts to the best of our ability and not waste them. I take this mindset into all my training and life.

That is why I push so much in my workouts. I don’t want to waste what God has given me (of course, I don’t want to abuse it either--which is why I need my coach to keep me from overtraining). Some say I am just a crazy perfectionist (and I have admitted that myself as well), but is more than that. It is about waking up every day, thanking God for the chance to enjoy these incredible gifts, and doing something with them.

It’s my responsibility to use what I have been given.

I haven’t always been good at it. I’ve had many workouts where I gave half-effort. Many friendships that I lost because I didn’t invest in them. Many bad decisions financially where I could have blessed others. But thank God for grace, right?

Every day is a gift -- a chance to get up again and give all I’ve got with what I have been blessed with. I’ll push hard in my training. I’ll love on those that are dear to me. I’ll make others smile with my ridiculous personality and habits. And I’ll encourage those that are going through this sickness as well.

Sooooooo, my question to y’all is this--Whatcha got? What gifts and talents have you been blessed with that you are able to pour your heart into and bless others with? What are you doing to develop to the best of your potential?

*Side note: Update on health--since I know y’all want to know about my personal health stuff. lol. I am on a BC that keeps me from having my period for 3 months since coming off the Lupron. I’m not due to get a period for another 5 weeks, BUT I’m bleeding and cramping a lot lately. Two days ago, I was very sick and had to chill a little. I’m feeling good physically, just dealing with some nausea and pain. The way I feel right now is nothing compared to what I went through on the Lupron and before surgery. This is just hiccups compared to the past--to which I am SO THANKFUL!


  1. I love how positive you are and I will now (thanks to you) ask God to show me my talents and help me live up to my fullest potential.

    You can add inspiring to your list of talents!

  2. Holy Crap! And no I am not pulling your leg...when I went to make my last comment and hit Post Comment the word that came up that I had to type in for verification was...are you ready...get this...BIBLE!!

    No way!!

  3. And just to make sure I checked the last one and it was INGSHOO!

    So now it's really crazy that BIBLE came up for my 1st post!

  4. Hahaha. That is too funny, Michaela. The idea of you checking to make sure made me laugh even more!

    I hope you know that you are a really good writer. You somehow are able to weave humor into dark situations--and it amazes me every time I read your posts how you can do that! You’ve got some pretty awesome talent.

  5. Nice strong 4000 yd workout I saw, looks like you are going to be ready for Branson! I can't wait for my rematch with that course!


  6. I love this post... you have such an amazing outlook on every part of your life (even you blurb at the end). Keep it up... you are an inspiration to many of us! I hope some of that positive vibe seeps through the computer today!