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From the Editor: September/October

The Toe of Awakening
The Toe of Awakening In the rush of this issue I took a break and waded into the Rogue River and soon got caught up rolling boulders out of the launching area in preparation for our annual whitewater race, the King of the Rogue. Water displacement makes it possible to move large boulders, and moving boulders is profoundly satisfying. But I got distracted thinking about the appropriate headline for Zainab Salbi’s cover story: Should it be “Take Control of Your Story!” or “Why Share Your Pain?” And so a boulder rolled over my big toe.  Aha! I had lost control of my story and could now share my pain. This was a teaching boulder! The lesson was just beginning. That evening, while watching Netflix, I rolled over and a rib popped out of place—and I felt as if I had been skewered. I couldn’t lie down, couldn’t sleep, and when I finally did—and thus breathed deeply—I woke up with the pain reset to that perfect (expletive deleted) 10. After a few days I became leery of sleep because it meant waking up. Meanwhile, I tried pretty much everything: adjustments, acupuncture, opioids, …

Stephen Kiesling is a former Olympic rower, cocreator of the Nike Cross Training System, and editor at large of Spirituality & Health. A 35th anniversary edition of The Shell Game: Reflections on Rowing and the Pursuit of Excellence has just been published.

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