Mary Eggers

General

Happy New Year!

I am not one to do a lot of looking back. My colleague Heather used to say “The rearview mirror is small, and the windshield is big for a reason.” I look back at the things in life that should be reflected on. But I don’t spend long there. What did I do, what could I do better?

I don’t measure the year in miles that I swam, biked or ran. I don’t measure the year in who I lost, or who I gained. I don’t measure the year at all in fact. I am aware that this is one of my faults and one of my assets. But I like myself this way so I choose not do anything to change it!

I am at such a interesting time of life. Our son will graduate from high school and begin college. That transition will be seismic for all of us, for a variety of reasons. We have one more CSE meeting to go, I never thought these would come to an end. Now we teach Luc how to navigate and advocate for himself as he enters a new environment.

After 4 1/2 years in Nursing Education, earning my Masters and working a ton, I am settling down. I will begin teaching in the course I dreamt of teaching in, starting in January. I am at the college I dreamt of teaching at, and on the team I have dreamt of being on. I have struggled and stumbled with what to do next, if anything. I have been accepted into a Doctorate program, and I don’t really need to pursue it. I was going to start in April but I think I might push that to Sept, or off indefinitely. Tomorrow, I may decide to keep pushing for it as planned.

When you arrive at the destination point, the place you have had your sights on for so long, it’s a strange place. I am ‘just’ teaching and coaching a small number of athletes. I have time again. I am working on shifting from having that big goal as a carrot in front of me, towards being the best teacher I can be for my students. Stay tuned on the Doctorate.

Athletically I am shifting too. From the Ironman life to the short course life. The biggest difference is more focused training. Ironman training is definitely focused but I chose not to really dial in and focus if that makes sense. It was a safe goal and I knew if I put in the work I would achieve the goal. This season I have set the goal to dial in more, to focus more, and that’s meant looking at paces and power and data more carefully. Heck I am even on Strava. Catch up with me there if you want! Finally, a place where I feel great about talking about all things training with people who love it equally. I even post photos. It’s so fun!!!!!

Rather than saying I am shifting from Ironman to short course, it’s really I am shifting from a very safe goal and going through the motions, to dialing in, paying attention, and taking some athletic risks.

I turn 45 this year and I am lucky beyond belief that I have been in this sport for over 2 decades. My resume here is solid and something I never compare the current version of myself to. I don’t know if that came when I turned 40, or with maturity. Maybe both!!!!!!

I will not come into 2019 with a list of things I want to eliminate from my life or from myself. I come into 2019 with a big list of adventure and things I want to do and see. I don’t have some well scripted words of inspiration to share about crossing the line into 2019. Maybe it’s because I do my best to live the best life I can every single day. Sometimes I nail it, sometimes I fail miserably at it. I learn from both and that’s what I will always continue to do.

The best advice or inspiration I can give are words I didn’t write:

“Life is too short to wake up with regrets. So love the people who treat you
right. Forget about those who don’t. Believe everything happens for a reason. If you get a chance, take it. If it changes your life, let it.
Nobody said life would be easy, they just promised it would most likely be worth it.”

Thank you for being in my life. Whether we are connected through social media, nursing, triathlon, our past lives, or our future ones, I am grateful beyond measure for the light you bring into my life.

Here is to 2019, let’s make this happen!!!!!!!!

General

4am

I go to church every day from  4-7am. For me church isn’t traditional. There are no pews, no singing, no congregation. Sometimes church takes the form of a pool, a bike, a run, or wrapping my hands around heavy weights. On most Sundays it’s sitting on my window bench reading, writing, journaling, dreaming. Waiting for the sun to rise.

I don’t pray or receive communion at 4am. And 4am isn’t about miles or intervals, those kind of just happen. I guess they are the bonus.

4am is really where there is silence and stillness in my movement. That first push off the wall in the pool when time feels completely suspended. The noise of my cadence in the fresh fallen snow as my breath gains momentum and I can see it in the darkness hilighted by the moon.

4am is where I fill my cup.

I don’t know how to write this without sounding conceited, or sounding like I believe I am important in this world. If you know me you know I don’t feel that at all. So trust me if you don’t. I am often told I am a light for some, and that’s something I take very seriously  and with great responsibility. I have stopped questioning why because there really isn’t anything special here. It doesn’t matter why, if I am a light for someone then I must be a good light for them. We all endure times of darkness and we all need to have something or someone to provide that light. Often that light doesn’t need to go deeper than just being bright. It doesn’t need to go deep.

I have been told that often enough that I must keep that light bright and from a place of truth, authenticity and responsibility.

Not too long ago my husband said to me “Everyone feels the need to relay everything to you. Their medical issues, their problems, their workouts. Does anyone ask how YOU are?”

I laughed and answered him truthfully. No.

But that’s not the point. I stay close to those who feel like sunshine and they are the ones who ask and who care. And they are who I count on.

I need those who don’t ask to always know they can count on me. It’s important to me to give to give, not because I need to receive. Life is not all give and take. We take from a lot of people that we don’t give back to. We give to those who are incapable of giving back. What we receive can never be the reason we give or love.

We have to love ourselves enough to be okay with that. It’s not easy. But it’s easier to close off because of it. Self centeredness is much easier. If you are a light for someone be a good bright light and be that light because it helps someone, not because you need something in return. It doesn’t make me some sort of martyr, it just is what it is.

That cup can get empty though.

4am fills that cup for me.

For some this whole movement thing is about capturing that perfect Instagram post. Running by the camera set on the ground time and time again to grab that angle that garners the most likes and fills the need that it fills. And that’s okay. Be ok with that. It’s just not me and for me to try to fit into that is not who I am.

Be who you are.

I have never loved meditation when it comes in the form of sitting cross legged on a pillow and imagining that I am the wind flowing through a purple sky. Meditation for me comes in the earlier described moments. There is this light pole I run to on the top of that one hill. Every time I run I stop there, turn around and just look at the world. The view from there is astounding. It’s quiet and it’s next to a farm. Two sheep dogs usually run to the fence and bark a few times. We are old friends those dogs and I. They know my voice.

Meditation comes form that moment before the sun comes up and sometimes later in the day. Where the world is just quiet and I don’t think about much except the feeling of being alive that movement gives me.

The outsider thinks this 4am thing is compulsive. To a degree it is. It used to be much more compulsive.

Over the years it’s become about filling the cup so the light stays bright. It’s become about feeling what I feel in the art of movement. It’s become about finding the edge of myself.

I call it my church because I don’t know what else to call it. It’s my sanctuary.