After she was gone, I thought about that exchange, and felt for the briefest moment a bit of jealousy. I wished I was on a bike, that I was going downhill. Then I realized how absolutely stupid that thought was. We were on completely different journeys. I was in a tough spot, moving slowly and painfully uphill. She was whizzing along, the wind at her back and a smile on her face. But to compare our situations would be futile. She was on a bike. I was running. She was going down the hill, I was going up. It wasn't the same. Our paths may have crossed but comparison had no place in that encounter.
As I ran I thought of how many times I've done that-- compared someone else's down to my up, someone else's up to my down-- when the truth is, we were on completely different journeys and comparison was ridiculous. And as I ran I thought of how I needed to share this with you, because perhaps you've found yourself making the same mistake as I did. Whether someone is doing better or worse than you, there is no reason to compare. Because their journey will always, always be different than yours-- different income, home, family, past, physical and emotional limitations, etc. There is no one like you, and no one else that can do your life the way you are supposed to do it.
So if you see me running uphill give me the thumbs up and keep moving forward in your journey. And if you breeze past me on your bicycle, I promise to do the same.