I wonder how many of us (seemingly grown adults) still live among the “you can’ts” we were fed as children. I wonder how we limit ourselves, how we stay in our assigned boxes, how we surrender to what just won’t ever be…
I don’t know who said it first. I don’t know who repeated it next. I don’t have some horrible scarring memory. I don’t blame anyone, but I know it was said and reinforced, and ultimately believed…by me.
“Katie can’t.” “Katie’s just not athletic.” “It’s just not Katie’s thing.” “Katie can’t.” “Katie can’t.”
It marked my childhood and my formative years. I wasn’t athletic. I couldn’t play sports. I wasn’t meant for it. I wasn’t built for it. I wasn’t programmed for it. I just couldn’t.
Important Sidenote- this isn’t a pitty party. Honestly, there are worse things that children hear every day. This is just my humble example to illustrate my point.
So, here’s Little Katie. Let’s be totally frank, here. There was probably a lot of truth in their assumption that I couldn’t do it. I was super coordinated, didn’t have a competetive bone in my body, and really showed little interest in any sporting activity. But as we age, these statements become long-held truths that we “know” about ourselves. I knew that I would never be like my siblings. I’d never play a soccer game, I’d never run a marathon, I’d never be a triathlete. Never….never…never…because I simply can’t.
Fastforward to January 2012. I’m 32 years old for Heaven’s sake. I need to shed some baby weight and get back in shape. So, I join a little group called LexRunLadies. I show up (knowing the truths about myself, but hoping they won’t smell it on me and kick me out of the group immediately). A gentle, kind, welcoming soul is waiting for me – enter Krissie Carr Bentley.
Over the last six months, I’ve heard these words from her mouth (directed at me no less!)
“You CAN do this!”
“You absolutely can do this.”
“Can you believe you’re doing this?”
“You’re a runner!”
“You’re really a runner!”
One person. One honest, kind soul. She undid 32 years of “You can’ts”. She made me believe. Little Katie Havelda that simply knew she couldn’t finally knows she can. One cheerleader was all I needed. One, honest, kind soul.
So my wonderings lead me to this:
What have you been told over and over that you can’t do? Why do you believe them? Is there any real reason, you can’t change the truth about yourself and say, “Actually, you’re wrong. I can.” and then, just do! I think you can!