Up until a few weeks ago, I thought I was in good physical shape for my age. Then I attempted sit-ups.
Some years ago, I could clasp my hands behind my neck and do 50 sit-ups. Unaware that had changed, I confidently clasped my hands behind my neck and did…nothing. I could not even pull myself up one time. Now every morning, I hook my feet under the stair railings and do as many sit-ups as I can. I still can’t do one with my hands behind my neck…but I’m working toward it. Simply because if you don’t use it, you really will lose it. There are a lot of things I would love to lose (like extra weight), but health and fitness are not among them.
My inspiration for getting back into shape is native Texan and Bandera rancher Edwina. When she was in her 70s, Edwina suffered a massive stroke that left her unable to move or speak. As she listened to her doctor and her family discuss the fact that she would be totally incapacitated for the rest of her life and unable to live alone, she got mad. When she heard her family talking about selling her ranch and putting her in a nursing home—she got Texas mad!
Since Edwina could neither move nor speak, her doctor and her family didn’t know that she could hear them. Edwina focused on her big toe on her right foot until she made it move. She repeated. Over and over, Edwina made one toe move. Then she focused on the other toes, then her foot, then her leg. Imagine her family’s amazement when they walked into her hospital room and found Edwina lifting and lowering her leg!
Edwina returned to her ranch home and spent the rest of her life living there on her own. She never drove again, but she ordered groceries and cooked her own meals and cleaned her own house. Once a week I would walk over and mop under the bed and in other hard to reach places.
So…I do sit-ups. I can do 10 now easily. Any day now I expect to manage one with my hands behind my neck.
Writing is the same way. If I had quit after the first rejection slip, or the second, or number 150—the Texas Miz Mike series would never have been born. Now five Christian mystery-romance-suspense books share the “Bridge” title, and number six will be out before summer.
You don’t have to be a writer to be persistent and hang on to your dream. Whatever talent you have—use it or lose it!