Monday, April 20, 2009

At what point do you become?

Aundrea’s husband ran another marathon this weekend. He did a great job. He can even walk up AND down the stairs today (after just 1 day of “healing) I know because he told me that the oatmeal was downstairs and he “will walk for food”.  Aundrea’s husband and I are friends I think. Maybe I’d better request him on Facebook just to be sure though. However, he’s not the point of this post. He’s just an example. In my mind he is “a runner”.
My mom went running every single day for like 9,000 years (or however long I lived at home….whatever.) she ran marathons too and I think she’s “a runner”.

I went “running” er…waddling…. every day for like 3 months last year. I am not (nor was I ever) “a runner”.  I was “a person who went running”. Mostly against my will. Is it because I didn’t do it long enough? Or because I didn’t like it?
It can’t be directly related to the number of days in a row a person runs, because then no 16 year old could ever be “a runner” based on the fact that they haven’t been alive long enough to run enough days in a row. It also can’t be related to if you like it or not, because I’m pretty sure my mom prefers most things to running on a sheet of ice. She just did it so she wouldn’t die. Also so she wouldn’t go crazy. And sometimes so her bones wouldn’t hurt (I think…you’ll have to ask her to find out for sure).  

So, at what point do you become what you do? Is it when you love it a certain amount? Is it when you’ve logged a certain number of hours doing it? (Now there’s a depressing thought….how many of you are “dish doers” or “laundresses” or “diaper changers”….hmm….) Maybe it has to do with what you give up for it? Like if you give up your extra $2/day it’s one level of “becoming” and if you give up your only half hour of silence each day, that’s another level. But if all you’ve given up is Saturday morning chores, then really you’re just someone who goes running (or waddling…whatever). But if you give up watching American Idol then maybe that’s the level you really become a runner.

What about other things? At what point are you a quilter? A driver? A scrapbooker? A couponer? A drunk? A lazy bum? (cuz if it only takes 3 months to become a lazy bum, I’m there. And it’s unfair that 3 months of sitting makes you a bum, but 3 months of waddling doesn’t make you a runner…) A biker? A napper? A reader? A blogger? A writer? (When does a “post” become a “piece”?) A dancer? (or are we human?) A photographer?

When do we become what we do?


  1. Good question. I think this is one of those relative things. Just fyi, in my mind, you are a blogger, a secretary, and not a lazy bum. I could probably say you are other things but I'll stop with those.

  2. Excellent post! I think your comments about what we give up in order to do the thing that we become really hit the mark. There is no way I will give up sleep to go to a Saturday morning yoga class, but my good friend gives up her precious snoozing to teach that same yoga class. She is a true yogi. I think the more you give up other things in order to pursue something else, the more you are definitely defining yourself as a _________ . By this definition I know that I am a mother, wife, writer, reader, friend, and shoe wearer (among other things). I will give up food in order to buy shoes.

  3. Deep Hmmmmm...Great post and I have absolutely no answers for ya'. But I guess I agree with the previous comment. Look at gave up becoming a runner to become a mother AKA Lazy bum....ha ha ha

  4. You know, I've given this a lot of thought. Stay tuned for a future (possibly waaay future) post entitled "Identity Boxes."

    Your appetite is whetted, huh?

  5. Fabulous post! Definitely food for thought


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