Learn From Your Burdens – But Don’t Let Them Define You


Hey guys, Coach Clint here from Penance Gym. Before I go any further, if you find what I’m about to say valuable, insightful, helpful, whatever adjective you want to use there, share it because you don’t know who it might help to hear this message.

Today, I’m coming to you talking about hardships and not the cool ones that allow you to drive at an earlier age. We’re talking about the burdens that we have to bear. And it’s actually because of a burden that I’ve been bearing that I’m actually even up right now doing this video. While I’m recording this, it is 4:15am on a Friday. And, I’ve been awake since about 1:20. And the reason is I am, a lot of people may not know this, but I’m an asthmatic. And I have been for close to 30 years now.

It’s not something that I, well, I do make jokes about it because I feel like that’s about the only way that I really feel comfortable dealing with it, but I also will be completely honest, it makes me feel very vulnerable. So I don’t show when it actually affects me. If I’m actually having an attack, very few people actually ever see me using a rescue inhaler because when I was diagnosed, I was seven years old and it seemed much more rare then than it is now. I think there was probably two people in my grade that had been diagnosed with asthma, me and another guy. And it felt like everywhere we looked, especially in media, TV shows, movies, things like that, asthmatics were always portrayed as the dorky kid, the weak kid. It was never the cool guy that was portrayed as an asthmatic.

So it kind of subconsciously messes with you a little bit there so it’s not something that I show too terribly often, as far as the vulnerability side of it, I just make jokes about it. Actually, I’m up right now because I woke up with a minor wheeze at 1:20. On a scale of one to 10 it’s like a half. But once I woke up for that, my brain just started going nuts with different ideas and I literally laid in bed for the next two hours and finally just decided I had to get up and get some of the ideas out. This was one of them, I wanted to share that story, the hardships there, because as a kid, I had the option of, do I let this excuse, do I let this crutch hold me back from getting to do things? Because I would always have, in my back pocket, the asthma card, I can’t do that, I have asthma. I can’t do that, I have asthma.

My parents did a good job of not letting me make that choice, of still trying to push me to do things. My brother, if he listens to this, he swore for years and he might still say it, that it’s all in my head. So, I had people around me that did try to push me to continue moving forward. And because of that, I did continue. I played sports and everything, but I remember in high school having to pull myself from basketball games to take a puff of my Rescue inhaler and all the things. Now with that said, as a high schooler, my food choices was not conducive to controlling asthma. And that’s kind of where I’m going with this conversation, with this video here is you can’t let your hardships define you, right? You can let them develop you, you can let them mold, you can let them shape you, but you can’t let them define you.

Because of that minor hardship that I’ve had now for upwards of 30 years, I’ve learned a lot. I’ve learned how to control myself under pressure because I have woken up before in the middle of the night and had like a six out of a 10 scale of attack and no medicine in the house and had to just breathe my way through it. And it’s funny to say, breathe your way through it to an asthmatic, but I had to breathe my way through it. I’ve learned a lot about inflammatory responses because of that, because for those that don’t know, asthma ultimately is an inflammatory response. Anything that affects eczema also affects asthma so a lot of food choices will cause that inflammatory response, it’ll cause inflammation in the lungs. And so then it’s harder to breathe.

So I’ve learned a lot about triggers and things like that. And that carries over to other aspects of life as well, which is nice. But we all have our own hardships, right? Use them to learn, to develop, to adapt. They’ll mold you, but you can’t let them define you. I chose at a very young age, and I didn’t even know I was making the choice, but I chose at a very young age to not just be the asthmatic kid. And that’s, don’t let your hardships define you, keep moving forward.

Thank you guys for tuning in. As I said at the beginning, if you found this to be helpful, if you found it to be beneficial, if you well, share it, because you don’t know who else might be holding onto some hardships and they’re not dealing with them well, all right? Thank you guys for tuning in.

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