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How I love to walk. As a teen, we lived a mile from Lake Erie and I would walk there every day - sun, rain, or snow, it didn’t matter. I loved the way the lake looked in every season. As I walked I would talk to God, let him know what was on my mind. I’d day dream about what was happening in school. And I’d sing to myself. On the way to the lake I cut through a park that had a hidden pine forest in the middle that smelled divine. There was a beautiful meadow. In the summer it was filled with wild-flowers - it looked just like a painting. But mostly, the lake. Great Lakes are a bit like the ocean, in that you can’t see to the other side. They are large, beautiful and for me a place of grounding and peace.

Throughout my life, I’ve continued my love of walking, whether that’s in nature or in a big city. I love the freedom it gives me. I love to look around and see new things wherever I go, even if it’s around a block I’ve walked hundreds of times before. I love walking by myself and walking with friends. You could say it’s my go to activity.

I was lost when I had to give up walking. It became a future visualization often for me in my healing process. I would visualize walking to the end of the driveway. I would visualize walking to the end of the street. We moved to a new home, and my husband continued our tradition of walking every night after dinner. He told me about a park at the end of the street with a playground. I visualized walking there - to me it was a place of mystery and fun, filled with children laughing and pickup games of basketball. I was determined to get there.

Very slowly, I was able to start walking again. At first it was to the end of the driveway - yay, me! Then, my husband and I did one block. I was both exhausted and thrilled. I did that for a long time. Then, one day, I walked the 5 blocks to the park. I was as exhilarated as if I’d run a marathon. I was there! And it was awesome. A small city park with a playground, basketball court, and a pavilion. It even had a baseball diamond. I was grinning ear-to-ear. I made it!

This summer, now recovered, I started training for a 5k walk (a little over 3 miles). I started slowly, and added steps each day. I trained in our local park, where I soaked up the sun and the healing flow of the trees. I love the meadows, the forest, and the small hidden pond I found. But mostly I loved how strong my body was. My legs, my heart, my lungs all working together in strength. I felt like I could walk forever, talking to God, singing to myself and smiling the entire way. The day I made 5k felt great!

There’s so much you may feel like you have to give up. I’m here to share that you don’t need to give things up, as much as set them aside for a period of time. God has given me back everything I set aside and more. The abundance I’m experiencing now is unlike anything I’ve experienced in the past. Those years of waiting are bearing fruit. Your miracle is coming. Take that first step with me - visualize what your favorite activity is and how you feel doing it. Repeat as needed until you smile. I want to see your smile shining forth. I know it’s there waiting for you. You’ve got this!

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