"So.....You just got a cell phone?" I asked Jill.
It really surprised me.
"Yep, got one for my birthday. Never had one till just recently."
Now that is endearing.
Simplicity in today's tech avalanche. I couldn't imagine meeting anyone who didn't have a phone but then I thought about the beauty of it.
Imagine only talking to people when you see them, face to face. Reaching friends and family on the land line at home. Shopping in peace. Driving alert. Sharing dinner and real conversation.
No distractions. No screen time. Freedom.
She told me she liked keeping her life simple as she raised a family and there really wasn't a big need for one.
Sounds like a pretty good life to me.
I agreed, life might be simpler without one......
Jill was the third of four children growing up in Franklin, PA and all were very athletic. Her older brother was a standout basketball and baseball player and would go on to play Division 1 ball. Her other brother focused on basketball and track and her younger sister on soccer and softball.
At age four, Jill began taking dance lessons which would be a prelude to her sports participation which evolved into track and volleyball all through high school. At that time the longest race she ran was 400 meters.
Reflecting back on those days she often wonders if her running now, is to take the place of the "what ifs" of her youth. She misses the competition of those days but now it is more of competing with herself.
So in her mid-30s after her 3rd child, she wanted to bring herself back to being fit and attended a 1/2 marathon Boot Camp which led to her first marathon in 2010 and it qualified her for her first of 7 Boston Marathons. Through the 20 marathons since what has she learned?
"That each one I do is no joke. I better prepared mentally and physically."
As a second grade teacher in her hometown of Chambersburg, PA she has given valuable lessons to her students.
"Sets a goal and practice."
"For your reading to improve and for you to read the whole book, it doesn't happen all at once, you have to practice.
Simple instructions. Without overthinking it.
On a personal level Jill's classroom is her running and she has been in attendance for over 8 years now. That's right. She hasn't missed a day in 8 years of running. It is a tribute to her tenacity and discipline and her accountability to herself. Through it all she has been virtually injury free for she knows how to self regulate and give herself a break.
When she does, she likes to read and cook healthy meals for the family.
"Tell me the one book you would gift someone". I asked.
"That would be, Mittens Strings for God: Reflections for Mothers in
a Hurry, it has really helped me slow down and be grateful."
Gratitude is in her voice when she tells me that she would not be where she is without the huge contribution of spousal support.
I could tell that this woman has found her place and not a place that is based on performance.
I had to ask for the best advice she could give someone.....
"One step at a time. One becomes two then three..."
I like that.
Thank you Jill.