The trainer at the gym hands you a 25-lb. weight for what's called the one-hand suitcase carry— weight of a sack of rice, weight of a squirming toddler, weight of three gallons of water like the ones you somehow carried from the busted main in the park, days after the earthquake in your city. How did you do it, how does anyone manage a new hardship that arrives without warning, without instructions or any period of training, that simply drops at your feet so you have no choice but to learn by carrying? In Middle English, the word lift once meant the air, the atmosphere; the sky, the firmament. A raising up from the ground or soil or mud, or picking up and dusting off to stand upright again. The move is supposed to open up tight shoulders so they align with the natural curve of the spine. Everything, you're told, connects: core, shoulders, upper back, hips, glutes. Your goal is to walk bearing this weight without falling, to work with the resistance that wants to derail your grounding. This kind of suitcase isn't a wheelie; how long and how well can you schlep? What is this instinct to carry, forward and back, once it's in your hands?