My daughter Shannon is a very independent, self sufficient young lady. She has a job that she loves, writing and editing for her local online newspaper. Last year, as one of her work assignments, she trained for and participated in a local marathon race. Right from the start, she knew she had to replace her running shoes...they were old, and worn, and simply not up to the task ahead. Now, I will say that was not an easy decision for her. She's frugal. She watches her budget. And she doesn't replace things just willy nilly. So when she said she needed new running shoes, I knew for a fact she NEEDED new running shoes.
Now, she's also young, adaptable, and very resilient, and, as you can tell, has a wicked sense of humor! Shoes in general were not a big issue to her. For the most part, as long as they stayed on her feet and were reasonably comfortable, she was a happy camper. So, she set about to finding a reasonable replacement for her shoes. After a bit of shopping, she found a pair that were just her size, and she was able to get a great deal on them, too. All in all, she was pretty proud of herself.
Training began, and fulfilling her role for her job, she began writing and recording the various phases of her training. There were workout sessions to build stamina; there was nutrition counseling to make sure the participants knew the best ways to nourish and hydrate themselves for the challenge ahead (Shan's "interpretation" of those hydrating instructions sometimes left a bit to be desired, however); and, yes, there were practice running events.
At first, everything seemed just fine. She was getting great workouts, and on those shorter runs she was doing just fine. But as time went on, she noticed her feet weren't feeling so great. But she'd made a commitment and she was bound and determined to fulfill it. Even with sore feet, she still got to write, and blog, and video...all the while getting plenty of support and encouragement, even from other parts of the country.
The day of the big event arrived, and despite some hurdles, she was pretty excited and feeling "relatively" prepared. The race began, and it didn't take a very long time for Shannon to discover that her feet weren't holding up very well. Running turned to walking; walking turned to limping; limping was reduced to hobbling and grabbing any chance to sit down along the route. Now, she never expected to finish the race in the top ten. However, the plan was to FINISH the race. That didn't happen. Her feet simply wouldn't tolerate it.
What's more, in the days following the race, even more problems cropped up. Some of the muscles that she had used in an effort to "adapt" to her foot pain had been strained by the over-activity. After a visit to the doctor and time off her feet altogether, eventually she did heal just fine.
Those running shoes came with a very enticing price tag. However, their COST was considerably more. Fortunately, no permanent damage was done, and the experience brought with it a couple of great lessons. One of them is one of my personal favorites ... that "sometimes the journey IS the destination." The other, which I'm sure will prove invaluable over time, is that Price and COST are two very different animals. Personally, I'm grateful she learned that lesson over a pair of shoes (painful though it may have been) rather than over a real estate transaction!