Sunday, March 4, 2012

Your Memory Muscles

I read an article once that was written by a daughter whose father was in the latter stages of Alzheimer Syndrome. One of the things that stands out in my memory was when she would go to see him she would mention golfing and he would stand up and show her his swing. As his muscles remembered the action they used so long ago, his mind would begin to show signs of memory as well. This amazed the writer, and it amazed me as well.

I have been endeavoring to exercise and eat right in order to get my body into a healthier state of being. Let's be honest, I'd love to feel confident wearing shorts this summer in addition to the better health. Today, I had a glimpse of the memory that your working muscles can spark.

As I was struggling through my last reps of my bench press, tears came to my eyes. I felt exhaustion for sure but I also was hit with a long repressed memory from my past. I was at once in my own basement, and back in time in my parents' garage. Both times exercising to the point of exhaustion, but in that garage so long ago, there was nothing healthy going on. Back then I thought I was in love with a misunderstood young man I will call Mr. X. I thought that if I could just love him and sacrifice enough for him, Mr. X would turn his life around, and he would love me in return. Sadly I was wrong. I thought if I exercised and lost weight, then Mr. X would love me, so I went on yet another diet and allowed him to be my "trainer."

It was one of these training sessions that came back to me. This particular time, Mr.X put me through a grueling workout, in fact pushing me to the point of exhaustion and beyond. When I admitted I could do no more, my muscles were twitching from the exertion. I remember the feeling of being crushed as he went out with his friends and another girl that night. In the days that followed, the pain and soreness were a mocking reminder that you cannot make someone love you.

Though the memories were painful today, I'm glad they were brought to the surface as a reminder of that lesson I had long forgotten. You see, sometimes we start out with the best of intentions, only to have our motives and priorities subtly twisted. Each time I make healthy choices in my eating, or exercise my body, I must remember the reason must be to show love for MYSELF, and the one who created me. To do these things for anyone or anything else would be pointless.

I am glad that I am in the present, though I may be heavier than I was then, I am so grateful that I am also wiser.

Don't Say I Never Told You.


1 comment:

  1. Aw, Lisa, I am so glad you posted that. My dad has Alzheimers. He isn't in the later stages yet, but I grasp at every hint of how to handle it as his disease progresses. You have added another hint to my collection.

    I am glad you didn't get stuck with that guy, too. I love the line where you wisely said, "Each time I make healthy choices in my eating, or exercise my body, I must remember the reason must be to show love for MYSELF, and the one who created me." That is so true. The One who created you loves you so much!