This is a tired blog post, because I am tired. Not really physically tired, although there's a touch of that, but mostly I'm tired of just keeping on going. Serving others, even just my own baby and husband, is hard for my spoiled little soul. I'm accustomed to frantic mental manipulations to figure out how to do enough for them so that I can feel okay about it, but still mostly concentrate on doing whatever makes my frantic soul feel better. So focusing on my vocation the past little while is giving my flabby self-discipline a workout. And sometimes, I feel about the middle section of my days like I feel about the middle section of my little thrice weekly runs: I'm not worn out by any stretch of the imagination, but I'm just so uncomfortable and I hate being uncomfortable, and I'm bored because I just keep doing this uncomfortable and unvarying thing, and I just want to quit but that would be stupid, and I've already started counting how many breaths it takes me to run a minute and I haven't even finished half my time yet. So the end of today feels like the end of a run where I just ramped up my time or distance - my willpower to keep putting one foot in front of the other is ready to snap as soon as I soon as I hit my finish line. Not because it was a day full of difficult, dramatic, or even frustrating things, but because it was full of making the choices that made my self will uncomfortable.
This falls, as do so many things that I've written recently, into the category of things that I've learned about all my life, but never really got. Jesus talked about crosses; St. Paul talked about beating ourselves into submission. These things are difficult. Somewhere I had gotten the impression that if you were doing hard things correctly, they would cease to be difficult things. It would be like wearing yourself out dancing late into the night, not wearing yourself out pushing through that last half mile on the treadmill. As I've been learning, it's simply not true. Hard things stay difficult, even if you're doing them for all the right reasons. Even if, like running a mile and half, you don't think that they should even be hard things.