I’m out for a walk right now. It’s a little strange to be writing a blog post while I walk, but the topic of the evening is about fitness so it seems to make sense.This activity is not something that has come natural to me over the years. I have struggled on more than one occasion to find a routine that works for me.
Things changed this past May though. I finally had one of those moments where enough was enough. Have you ever had one of those? I’m a little bit embarrassed that it took me as long as it did to get to that point, and that it took several health scares to push me over the edge, but here I am.
I have exercised almost every day since the last week of May this year. This is me trying to catch up and be the healthy person I know I need to be. But what was the catalyst for the change? In a word…agency.
What does this word mean?
Agency – a person or thing through which power is exerted or an end is achieved.
In short, it is having and exerting the ability to change something. For me, and I came to the point where I had to realize that I had the power to make decisions to change myself for the better. No one else was going to do this for me in. The choices that I was making up to that point kept me down a very bad path. Let me explain.
Nearly 2 years ago I was diagnosed with cancer. During the first six months of 2018 my body underwent a tremendous amount of bombardment. I had more chemicals and medicines poured into me than many people do in a lifetime, but ultimately it did me very good. However, it left me in a very weakened state. Four rounds of chemotherapy, surgery to remove tumors, and 21 sessions of radiation should have been enough for one year, but I also had an auto immune flareup and was on several months of prednisone to combat that as well.
Now you start to see a clear picture and I’m way I was in the worst shape I’ve ever been in in my life. I was very overweight and in very poor condition. I had a choice though. I could stay that way, or I could exert agency in my own life.
I realize that I make choices every day. Some choices are for the good and some for the bad. They’re my choices. No one makes them for me. I didn’t necessarily choose for my body to be in the state it was in, but I wasn’t making choices and to combat the bad things that happened. With God’s help, I am changing that permanently.
Part of me wishes that these decisions to be healthy could have come under more favorable circumstances. Part of me knows that more favorable circumstances would have never led me to these decisions. Many times we don’t have a choice in what life throws at us, but we do have the ability to choose our response. We can exercise our agency and make the right choices.
The story is far from over. I have been cancer free now for 17 months. I’m looking forward to the future. I’m looking forward to a body that is healthy. Do I have absolute certainty in all of these things, no. I do however have a certainty in the God that watches over me. I have certainty that I can make good choices and exert the agency He has granted me in my life.
Since I started walking in May, my endurance is coming back. Since I started lifting weights at the beginning of September, my strength has started coming back. This is only the beginning. We go forward from here one choice at a time.