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Friday, December 6, 2019

Movement: One of the Secrets of Life

Movement: One of the Secrets of Life

For over 35 years I have watched a wonderful group of patients dedicate themselves to motion of some sort or other. They are not the athletes you read about in the papers; some would not consider themselves athletes at all. But they deeply understand that movement is crucial to their lives. I have helped them occasionally through life’s ups and downs, but mainly observed them and been inspired by them. This motion may start physically with some activity, but it is part of a larger pattern of involvement in life. They are engaged in life, inspired by some passion, or just very, very grateful for their time here on this planet. Daily they open the package called “the present” and celebrate in their own unique ways. 
I have come to appreciate the movement or rhythms of their lives. I can only weakly imitate some, as I try myself to find my rhythm of having a successful life. It is a type of success in life that is taught through movement, respect of the body and of others. It includes a respect of the soul, that inner force that calls each of us. That movement is away from the couch, away from self-pity, away from inertia. It is one of the deepest secrets in life that I know. Most 80-year-olds know that if you stop moving, you might as well cash it in. They understand. I hope I understand at 65. Can most 20-year olds-understand? It probably depends on how reflective they are.
The struggles to keep going are sometimes the food of the soul. In injuries, or disabilities, great lessons are learned. But in appreciating movement, deep truths are experienced and learned. An athlete that is self-centered has not learned the truth. A true athlete will learn many truths (humility, patience, kindness, etc.) when the secret of movement is realized.
One example of a person in motion is from my early days at Saint Francis Hospital in San Francisco. There was this funny old doctor when I first started—Dr. Waldo Newberg. Funny because he ran everywhere; between the office to the hospital, his car to the office, the elevator to the lunch room. When I first met him, I didn’t know what to think. I hadn’t learned the secret lessons of motion, even though I was an athlete. Dr. Newberg had seven children, donated time and money to the missionaries in Africa, ran the San Francisco Marathon when he was 80, and he was never rushed to say hello, or to answer any question.
My mother-in-law, Marilyn, was another wonderful example of a person in motion, even though she would say she is allergic to exercise. Her day is one of beautiful movement. A mother of five, with all her children and grandchildren in her daily conversations and concerns, she was always helping out. Always driving where she was needed, always bringing the family closer, always a beacon of love for those fortunate enough to know her. You never knew what city Marilyn will spend her day in, but everyone always felt her loving force, moving the conversation along, moving the grand kids to another event, moving the inertia personally from this world in a fully centered way.
So this movement is with the body, but it must come from the heart. It must come from deep within us. When it comes from this depth, a force is noted by all those around. It becomes an inspiration for how to live our lives. I felt that with my basketball, and my recent training and walking the Camino de Santiago in Spain. I feel a deep connection to my well being in my struggles and successes to move my body as I did as a 20-year-old. My job would tie me to a desk, dragging me into stillness, dragging me into 40 more pounds. I need movement to pull me out of my inertia and awaken my soul. I am a better person because of it. Now that I have finished my 500 mile journey across Spain, I pray I can find another way to keep moving, keep being engaged, keep caring, keep loving today for the present it is.


The preceding is from my book: Secrets to Keep Moving

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Thank you very much for leaving a comment. Due to my time restraints, some comments may not be answered.I will answer questions that I feel will help the community as a whole.. I can only answer medical questions in a general form. No specific answers can be given. Please consult a podiatrist, therapist, orthopedist, or sports medicine physician in your area for specific questions.