Today’s post is a writing challenge. This is how it works: participating bloggers picked 4 – 6 words or short phrases for someone else to craft into a post. All words must be used at least once and all the posts will be unique as each writer has received their own set of words. That’s the challenge, here’s a fun twist; no one who’s participating knows who got their words and in what direction the writer will take them. Until now.
At the end of this post you’ll find links to the other blogs featuring this challenge. Check them all out, see what words they got and how they used them.
I’m using: PAIN ~ REMORSE ~ VICTORY ~ IF ONLY
They were submitted by: Battered Hope
It’s 4:15am and my alarm is blaring in my ear. It’s a Disney’s Sleeping Beauty collectible alarm clock that my grandparents bought me as a gift. Sleepy the dwarf is yawning loudly and saying “Morning already? I’m so sleepy” over and over. I attempt to glare with my eyes closed. The sound of the dwarf’s whining is ringing in my ears, rousing me from my dreams, and slamming me back into reality. I vow, like I do every morning, to get rid of that alarm clock. I can’t even watch Snow White anymore without feeling nauseous.
I reach my arm from under my blanket and silence the alarm. I sit up in bed, shaking off the last remnants of sleep. I’ve wasted 5 minutes already. I need to leave the house in less than 10 minutes or I’ll be late again. IF ONLY I hadn’t wasted so much time wishing death on that dwarf. I jump out of bed and look around my messy room. I find a pair of sweatpants and a sweatshirt that I pull on over my pajamas.
I find my book bag slung over my desk chair I throw out yesterday’s calculus book to make room for some clean clothes that I will eventually wear to school later that morning. I check the clock on the footboard of Sleepy the dwarf’s bed. I have three minutes. I guess I’ll be eating cold pop tarts while I drive again.
It’s cold outside. Still dark. My car struggles to start, like it does every morning, but eventually rumbles into action. The heater doesn’t work, so there’s not much point to letting the car warm up. I grip the freezing steering wheel and head off into the mist of the morning. The leopard print fuzzy dice hanging from my rear view mirror are swaying and sparkling in the headlights of the few other cars on the road. It’s quiet and it’s cold. My fingers have gone numb. I drive with one hand on the wheel and one in my pocket trying to ease the PAIN.
I arrive at the pool at exactly 4:43am. I have to be in the water at 4:45. I run from my car to the dressing room, stripping off my sweatshirt as I go. I change quickly and arrive at the edge of the water with seconds to spare. It’s still dark in the pool. My coach and I are the only one’s there. He was clutching a very large coffee and looking full of REMORSE for what must have been a very long night that had drifted into this morning.
I place a toe in the water. I know it’s a bad idea, but I can’t help it. It’s freezing. I feel a chill run through my body. For a moment, I can’t bring myself to move any closer. Maybe the coach wont notice. He seems a little out of it this morning.
“1200 yard warm-up” He shouts at me from across the room.
I take a deep breath and jump…
This was my morning, six days a week, for all four years of high school. I was a competitive swimmer. My specialty was long distance swimming. I competed in the mile. This meant extra practices, alone, in the dark, at the crack of dawn. When I look back now, I’m not sure how I motivated myself to get out of bed every morning.
I have a theory that a person is born with only so much will power: a finite supply of discipline. I believe I used my entire allotment during those four years. I lived on teenage hormones, sugar, stubbornness and a little bit of fear. Arriving late to practice resulted in extra milage and more time spent in the water. It didn’t matter if I stayed up until midnight fighting with my boyfriend. There was no way I wasn’t answering when that dwarf called the next morning.
Sometime in my early 20s I ran out of discipline. I would regularly decide that I wanted to get back into fighting shape, but as soon as the going got tough, I slept in. I took great pleasure in looking at my new alarm, which I had purchased the second I went to college, turning it off, and going back to sleep. I would set it for ludicrous hours of the morning just so I could turn it off and go back to sleep. It was a personal VICTORY. A dream come true. And very, very addictive.
So here I sit, ten years, two kids, and more pounds than I care to list, later and I can’t make myself exercise. I borrowed on my future will power back then and now I am left with nothing but a bad shoulder and a hankering for baked goods. I was a competitive swimmer for 12 years. I was at the top of my game at 16. Now, the closest I get to exercise is pretending to be Thomas the Train in the kitchen, and I still have to get up at 4:00am on a regular basis. I can’t help but feel a little cheated.
Please check out these other great blogs who are participating in Use Your Words this week:
Baking in a Tornado
Just A Little Nutty
Black Sheep Mom
Stacy Sews and Schools
Confessions of a part time working mom
Evil Joy Speaks
Spatulas on Parade
Searching for Sanity
The Bergham’s Life Chronicles
FBX Adventures (In Parenting)
Dates 2 Diapers 2
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