Unbridled Joy


Unbridled joy… that’s what you get when you mix a snow day, ice-coated mountain
driveway, and a run with a 10-year-old.

My daughter’s face lit up when I posed the idea of going for a run on this icy day
home from school. “This will be pretty funny, mom.” And it was. The laughter erupted
when we struggled to gain and maintain traction up the first big hill—we couldn’t look
at each other (we were too focused on our own balance) but we could clearly imagine
how ridiculous we each must look. Each step was an adventure of whether we could
continue to gain ground. Finally, one of us said what we were both thinking: that
coming back down was going to be really crazy. We journeyed the icy mile separately,
but were brought together when we heard the yelps of each of us almost falling
peppering the quiet woods. That was only broken with the sounds of our redbone
coonhound’s nails grappling for control and sliding as she shared in our struggles.
We ran, slipped, and searched continuously for places of stability where gravel poked
through the ice or bits of ice chunks provided the slightest reprieve.

Coming down was as crazy as predicted and although the goal was simple, to not fall, I
realized that this challenge of coming down was much different. While we were trying to
not lose ground on our climb up the hills, on the way back down, we were desperate to
slow the pace and not gain ground too quickly and slide out of control.

Of course, it made me think about the personal and business challenges I approach
and navigate each day. Which of those am I trying to gain footing, move carefully
through to not lose ground or fall, and where do I find places of strength, stability, and
safety to continue to push on? And, which of those am I worried the accelerated pace
is potentially a threat and I need to gain traction and control to not gain faster than
I can manage? And then… are there times that I am skipping or avoiding “the run”