Comparing “Up”

I had a wild trip into the city yesterday.

Trips into Winnipeg are usually wild, because it involves 4 hours of driving, and a long day of cramming in as much as possible. Yesterday was just one of those days, and Ben couldn’t come in with me.

On the way in, when the sun was shining, I wasn’t exhausted beyond reason, and the girls were happy, that wasn’t a big deal.

On the way home, when my wipers couldn’t keep up with the rain, I couldn’t see the road, and Kaylia was wailing (while Anika slept through it all), I felt quite differently.

My trip into the city involved a physio appointment for my hips/pelvic area, and was made a few months ago. It was a really good appointment, and my new physiotherapist is my new best friend, because she says she can help me, and I’ll be able to walk long distances again.

So maybe next time we go to Sea World, I won’t have to ride in a wheelchair. (But you do get a good view from the special handicapped seating area…)

Anyway, I left my appointment feeling hopeful and optimistic, but as I was thinking about everything throughout the rest of the day, I began to feel more and more discouraged. I started feeling really sorry for myself  – I’m only 32, and I have all of these problems with my body.

I want to be strong and healthy. I want to be able to run after my kids, and go for long walks. I want to be like all the other moms that I see who are healthy.

My thoughts just kind of took this crazy downward spiral, until I got to the point where I was no longer thankful for a good appointment that could end up helping me. I got grumpy because I had to have the appointment at all.

In my mind, I was seeing myself as this frail, sickly person who always has something going wrong with my body.

And suddenly I realized that I was “comparing up” – I was comparing myself to all the people who are completely healthy and athletic, and don’t have to deal with any problems like I do, and I was completely ignoring the fact that I could just as easily “compare down”.

What about the people in wheelchairs, who can’t walk EVER?

Good grief, I have problems with my hips because I have a wonderful baby girl, and going through labor just kind of ripped me apart. …but was one of the most amazing experiences of my life.

Why is it that I keep wanting to look at the people who have what I don’t, and think that’s the “normal” standard? Why do I not look at how much I am blessed with that so many people don’t have?

When I hop into my van to drive 4 hours into the city, it never crosses my mind that only 8% of the people in the world own cars. I went to Superstore and spent over $100, and spent more in half an hour than people living in 3rd world countries make in a year.

So maybe my hips are shot, but we have Kaylia in our lives!

Maybe the drive back to camp sucked, but I have a vehicle to drive!

Maybe we live 2 hours away from everything, and sometimes it’s just a huge pain, but I get to be part of a ministry that excites me more than anything else that I’ve experienced.

So that’s the story of my pity party. And that’s how it ended.

2 thoughts on “Comparing “Up”

  1. meeeeeh! i struggle too with comparing up or just comparing to what I think should be “normal”. It is so hard not to compare to others…

    I cannot imagine what a challenge it is for you to have these struggles with your health. I am excited along with you about this new physiotherapist and looking forward to hearing more about this best friend (hopefully she can meet the promises that got her that place in the first instance :P)

    I want to tell you that I very much appreciate your open, honest, and loving heart and the way you share that here and also with me. The reality is that we all struggle with different things in life…and hearing you write about your search to see the positive in life is a gentle reminder to me on many days when that is not so easy to do. thank you.

  2. Pingback: “We” Instead of “Me” | Ordinary Days

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